Thursday, May 15, 2014

Walking In the Woods

It was a beautiful warm day today here in B.C., hazy skies with a slight breeze which made it a perfect day to go for a hike with the pups.  Come along with us and see all the wonderful wildflowers that are coming into bloom! (Just a warning, lots of pictures today :O)


These lovely little wild violets are just starting to make their appearance, you have to look hard to find them but it's worth the hunt on hands and knees!


I had shown you the wild clematis the other day but here's a closer view.  It's so hard to see inside these lovely flowers since they hang down from their vines like raindrops.


The Indian Paintbrush is just starting to bud out, soon the ground will be splashed with orange and red bursts of blooms.  The colours are so vibrant against the new spring greenery!


And the wild strawberries are in bloom!  A promise of a sweet treat to come; the wild strawberries are so very tiny but their flavour is impossible to beat.  It would take a very dedicated strawberry picker quite some time to pick enough to make jam, I don't have the patience I'm afraid.  So I reserve them for nibbling as we hike along the trails, delicious!


And here are the Fairy Slippers or Calypso bulbosa orchids as they are officially known.  So very tiny and delicate, I had to lay on my stomach on the ground to get low enough to take these pictures.  It seems impossible that  something this fragile could survive in the wilderness, but they are everywhere in the hills above our home.


They need undisturbed areas to grow and as the hills above us haven't been logged in many years, they are flourishing.


And I got a surprise when I got up onto the hill, the arrowleaf balsamroot is in flower!  These daisy like flowers are actually a member of the sunflower family and all of the plant is apparently edible, although I can't say as I've tried them :O)  Their bright sunshiny blooms scatter the hills around our home in places that most other plants can't tolerate and they are a welcome sight in the early Spring.


I don't know that I've shown you a picture of the area we live in before; this photo was taken at 'The Lookout', as it's known locally, on the hill above our home.  It looks down onto the valley where many small farms are located, we are looking north-northwest here.  Such a pretty view in the Spring when the trees are bursting into leaf.


This is one of my favourite 'wildlife trees' in the hills above us; the pups wouldn't cooperate and sit in front of it to give you some perspective but this old, dead, broken fir must be close to 15 feet in circumference at it's base.  The bark is full of holes where the woodpeckers have been mining for bugs and higher up they have their cavities where they nest.  All manner of wildlife live in the remnants of this majestic fir and I love the texture of the weathered bark and the bright green of the lichens and moss growing on the broken limbs.


But Mother Nature always balances the death of one tree with the new life of another, the aspens and poplars spring up in the open clearings where an evergreen has fallen.  The bright green of the aspen leaves are a promise that this forest will endure.


And with that, our hike is done and a stomp in the creek is definitely in order!  The cool, clear water bubbling over the rocks is a welcome respite after our hike in the hills.  The Delinquent certainly enjoyed her impromptu bath!  Hope you enjoyed our ramble and that you'll come back soon for another and until then, happy hiking!

Deb

13 comments:

  1. Lovely pictures! So nice to see color outside finally. What a cool tree. My dad says dead trees serve a purpose too.

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  2. Looks like you had a great hike. Your area looks a lot like mine....imagine that since we are both north country! Glad to see the flowers are popping out. We have a few weeks to go, but I can see the plants starting to peek their heads up. :)

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  3. That was a great hike Deb. Wish I had really been there to go with you. i LOVE that photo from the lookout but then I'm a mountain girl. Beautiful lady slippers. All your photos are lovely. I have a bunch of flowers to share too. must get the post scheduled.

    Have a great weekend.

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  4. Deb, thanks so much for showing us photos of the amazing flora, and fauna, lol of where you live.

    It's a true valley isn't it? Our's might be a bit wider? Not sure..but yours seems greener.

    There was a clematis growing down by the creek, but I think too many horseback riders have disturbed it.

    Jen

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  5. How beautiful is your green valley. It reminds me of some of the hills and valleys around Kamloops, where I lived until I was 13, then we moved to Prince George. Everything is so lush and green just now and all the woodland flowers in bloom just add to the beauty.

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  6. So many beautiful flowers you are enjoying!
    Things are still pretty brown out here in Southwest Saskatchewan. But I am hopeful that color will arrive soon!
    xo Catherine

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  7. what a beautiful hike! The Fairy Slippers are so fragile an lovely! We have a flower her in Ontario similar, they are a protecteted flower, its illegal to plant or pick, what a beautiful area, its heavenly!

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  8. Don't we live in a magical part of the world, where we can wander through forests, smell the unpolluted air and marvel at Mother Nature and all she offers us... Thanks for the tour and a nudge for me to get busy and head up the road to do the same thing... ;O)

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  9. What a beautiful hike ~ thanks so much for taking us along Deb!!!
    Wow I really love those fairy slippers ~ they remind me of columbine.
    Nothing like a run through the creek ~ our dogs love to do that too!
    Thanks again!
    Prim Blessings
    Robin

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  10. So beautiful Deb, you live in a truly magical place.

    Happy Canada Day and just to let you know you won my Giveaway. I already have you address so I will send it out this week.

    blessings & bliss
    Sue

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  11. Looks like where I live Deb...Don't you just love when mother nature decorates the place?

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  12. I loved rambling with you! Just so sad the wild strawberries aren't ready yet - I do love the wild fruits the best... the view of your valley is stunning - I'm pretty certain we've driven through it but I get confused about exactly where you are in relation to where I am... lol!
    Isn't the weather grand?!?

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  13. What a beautiful place! It was fun going for a walk with you.

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Due to an inordinate number of SPAM comments lately, I've had to turn on comment moderation and will post your comment as soon as I have reviewed it. Thank you so much for your interest in my work! Deb xo