Thursday, December 29, 2016


No, the ripples aren't from a fish, but from the rock I threw. 
Susann and I spent Christmas at our cabin at Horne Lake, and were joined by her family -- Mom and Dad, and her sister Christin and hubby Mikel and daughter Emmelin.

Our family with Emmelin's nicely decorated tree on Christmas Eve

The unseasonably freezing temps not only resulted in us having no running water and in me getting my exercise hauling water, but also in some beautiful ice formations.

I photographed the ice on two occasions, at dusk on the 24th and the morning of the 25th. It was cold on Christmas Eve and there was even more ice Christmas morning. I played around with some of the images, making some monochrome and others warmer or colder. I used a tripod and shot very close-up in most of the photos. Lots of fun!

I liked the frozen maple leaf in this one. 

More petrified leaves. 

I saturated the reds in this one. 

Not much color in this one, so I made it in monochrome. 

I cropped some, like this one, square. No need to shoot in "square" format. Just crop it after. 

I thought some looked better with a colder temperature. 

This old chain captured my eye. 

A close-up accentuated the frost crystals.

I found the leaf made an interesting shape, and I like angles better so shot it that way. 

I angled the crack in the ice diagonally.

A prehistoric looking shape in this one. Again, a close-up. 

Nice shapes in the ice, and I saturated the colors. 

A Canada goose track.

I placed the three cones on the leaf, and made this photo warmer. 

Hair Ice- Hair ice grows outward from the surface of the wood, as super-cooled water emerges from the wood, freezes and adds to the hairs from the base. 

I "made" this still-life by placing the cone on the driftwood.

And I draped the cedar spring on the ice crystals. 

And placed the grass stem on the conglomerate rocks. 

And then it snowed on Boxing Day and the magical ice disappeared!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Christmas Blog for 2016

It's been another great year for us, with lots of outdoor activities, traveling, and family time. Susann retired this fall, too, and she hasn't cramped my style too much, not yet, anyway!

I started off the year with a wonderful climb up nearby Mt. Arrowsmith, in sunshine!

Las Vegas

In February, I joined Mom in Vegas for a 2-week holiday, and Doreen and Susann joined us for part
of the stay. Here we are cruising through one of the casinos.


For Mom's 91st birthday I took her to Death Valley. The temperature here at the visitor center didn't quite match her years.

We also toured nearby "Valley of Fire."

Costa Rica

In March, Susann and I travelled to Costa Rica, and were joined by Doreen and her friend Norma.

We enjoyed the lush jungle with its exotic wildlife.

We also enjoyed the sunshine.

Although I found the sun somewhat intense!

I also led several backpacking trips for the Island Mountain Ramblers this year.

Keeha Bay in May:

A beautiful beach

Wonderful forest

And a happy bunch!

Flores Island in June:

Nootka Island in July:

We took a water taxi from Tahsis to the north end of Nootka Island. 
And upon our arrival at "Third Beach," we had a little time to relax. 
On our second day of hiking, one of our hikers badly sprained her ankle, and it was "SPOT" to the rescue, again! Just 2 hours after we put out our Mayday call, an RCMP helicopter arrived and our friend was transported to the hospital. Free of charge! Oh Canada!
We did have some rain on the trip, resulting in overflowing creeks.
But we managed to get a fire going every night, and ate really well!

We had a lot of hiking along the coast, usually rocky. 

But sometimes we had to take rough trails over headlands.
And through wet salal.
But the sun came out at Maquinna Point.

Fairview Bay on the Sunshine Coast in August:

And Susann and Chica joined me on this one.

Perfect weather and great scenery!

Family Visit

In July, my son Jan, his wife Mary-Ellen, and their three boys visited, all the way from Halifax. We enjoyed their company for a weekend at our cabin at Horne Lake:

Saskatoon in August

In August, I took a short trip to Saskatoon to visit Mom, Doreen, and friends. Susann was still working, so she couldn't go.

I went on a photoshoot with my old friend Frank Roy one day to the east of Saskatoon.

We don't have clouds like this on the west coast!
And on another day I went for a drive with Neil Stein, a younger friend. 


In September, Susann went to Spain with three friends.

While she was in Spain, I did some hiking, some chores around the house, took a photography workshop in Port Renfrew, and went on a whale watching tour.

Port Renfrew Photography Workshop

In October, we loaded up our tent trailer and headed down to the five National Parks in Utah. Wow!

Arches National Park:

Canyonlands National Park:

Capitol Reef National Park:

Bryce Canyon National Park:

Zion National Park:


In December, Susann and I went to Saskatoon for a few days. My son Jan had a work-related appointment at the university, and my brother Ron came up from Texas. A great reunion!

Millstone River, Bowen Park, Nanaimo (Dec. 16, 2016)
Ammonite Falls, Benson Creek Regional Park, Regional District of Nanaimo (Dec. 17, 2016)