A Beautiful Day… Trashed

A Beautiful Day… Trashed

Okay, I may have overstated things slightly in the title of this blog post, but it is really annoying when some people have to be so inconsiderate, especially when they are out in nature. This isn’t something that is specific to this day trip I took, unfortunately it is something that is far too common. Today started out great. It was a clear, albeit frosty, morning, which was a relief from all the rain we have had to start the year. I had decided to go explore an area hadn’t been to before, as well as some of the surrounding area that I was more familiar with.

A Frosty Start to the Day

The half-hour drive to the turnoff went smoothly, but I was certainly glad to be driving a 4×4 vehicle once I was on the, at times, very uneven, rough, gravel road. The great thing about the rough road and the fact that it is a little more remote and rustic area, is that there are less people and vehicles around, so it is easier to make photos in nature than some other areas. As I drove along the road towards my destination, I came across several little waterfalls that I had no idea were there. While there was a lot of branches obscuring them from a clear view, I was able to get a couple images of them and now know they are there so that I can return in the future.

One of the Unnamed Falls Along the Way
Scenes Like This Seemed to be Around Every Corner

I pulled up to my destination, by the Diversion Dam, which was by no means the end of the road, but it was as far as I had planned to explore on this day. A quick look around and the area was beautiful… but it didn’t take long before I saw signs of the kind of people who have to trash a place and so often result in areas being closed to the public or otherwise restricted.

Warning (Sign) Shot

One of the first things I noticed was a yellow warning sign, which had a bullseye target taped to it, and had been shot to hell. Although hard to tell without looking closely, the sign warns that when the siren sounds the water may rise fast, due to operation of the diversion dam. Nearby, there was a large circle of rocks that someone had made for a fire pit, and close to that were several deteriorating boxes of used shotgun shells and other debris. Sadly, this wasn’t the only area along my drive on the backroads that I saw this type of junk, along with other trash.

An Old Campfire Rock Ring and Pile of Shot Shells
The Outdoors is Not a Dumping Ground 😦

As it was still frosty out and the way down to the water and river below the dam was slippery and steep, I decided not to go down there on this occasion, but instead went up to the top for a better view.

The Diversion Dam
A Thin Layer of Ice Still Partly Covers the Surface Beyond the Dam

Having scouted out the area, I started my return journey and stopped for a coffee at the wonderful Cold Shoulder Cafe, in Jordan River.

Jordan River’s Best (and Only) Coffee Shop

Despite the 6°C (43°F) temperature, there were quite a few people in wetsuits on stand-up-paddleboards, surfing & kayaking. The local campground had quite a few people in it as well. While most of those would have been day campers, I had noticed several cars in the area with heavy frost on their windows at a campsite I had passed earlier in the day, so apparently some people are cold weather campers.

Is That How They Surf Down Under???

Thanks for taking the time to check out this post. Please make sure not to be one of “those people” who leaves a mess… better yet, try and take back a little of the litter that others have left there, to leave things a little better than you found them. It’s the least we can do.

Paddling Off Into the Sunset

 

Hiking, Photography and Creating on YouTube

Hiking, Photography and Creating on YouTube

As I recently mentioned, I have started to create videos on YouTube, following along on when I go out photographing on my hikes around (mostly) local areas. With all the time I have spent on creating videos, I have had less to spend on the blog, so I thought I’d give a little recap of some of the recent hikes I’ve been on. Each of the locations mentioned has a hyperlink to the video, and it would be great if you could view some (or all) of them, like those you enjoy, and leave a comment or two on YouTube to let me know that you thought.

My new hiking / photography companion, Cosmo

In my first video, I visited Sheringham Point Lighthouse, at Shirley, BC and I brought my new hiking buddy, Cosmo. He’s since made appearances in several other videos.

lighthouse at Shirley BC with blue sky
A beautiful day at Sheringham Point Lighthouse

Next, I took a quick, exploratory trip up to Mount Washington, to see some snow. My other frequent travelling companion, Henrietta (who you’ve met before) was introduced in this video. I had never been there before and I know I will be returning at some point in the future.

Fresh snowfall on Mount Washington

I then went to Mary Vine Falls, which is in Sooke Potholes Regional Park, and an easy hike from the trailhead. As of this time, it is the most watched and liked video I have published.

January brings lots of volume to Mary Vine Falls

A trip up to Tofino and Uclulet followed, and I visited Amphitrite Lighthouse.

The light shines brightly at the Amphitrite Lighthouse

On the same trip, I stayed at my favourite resort on the beach just outside the town of Tofino. I hiked around the trails at Cox Bay at that time.

Storm watching is always enjoyable at Cox Bay

For my most recent video, I travelled just past Port Renfrew, and visited Fairy Lake, where there is a unique little tree growing from a mostly submerged stump in the middle of the lake.

The Fairy Lake tree is probably the most photographed tree in the region

Most of my excursions are local and not planned long ahead, however I do have two more significant photography trips planned for later this year. One just a little further than I’ve been before on Vancouver Island, and another outside British Columbia, so keep an eye out for my upcoming posts and videos.

As far as my YouTube channel goes, before I started it, I thought I’d start slow, and do one video a month. As soon as I began, I realized that would be too infrequent and I wanted to get some content out there before slowing the pace a bit, so I have been publishing a new video every Sunday morning. Very soon, I will be settling in to two videos a month, coming out on the First and Third Sunday’s of each month. This should allow enough time to get new, interesting content and process it, but hopefully not too infrequent to grow my followers. Thanks for checking out this post, and I hope you were able to watch some videos as well. 🙂

A New Place and an Old Favourite

I recently learned of another park nearby; the Blinkhorn Nature Park, which has a wooded trail surrounding a small lake and today was the perfect day to check it out.  For most of the way around the lake, the trail was far enough away that you could only catch the odd glimpse of the water through the trees.  There was one nice approach to the lake that offered an interesting view, though.

a mirror image photograph of Blinkhorn lake, partially covered in ice

Looking across Blinkhorn Lake

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