Saturday, January 1, 2011

Mt. Collins

On the bright and sunny New Years Day we hiked up Mt. Collins behind our house for a beautiful visit to the frozen bluffs. I'll let the photos tell (most of) the story:

Hazel waiting around on the driveway for us to get ready and go: Well... are you ready?? I am being soooo patient, but I am also vibrating from expectation, and might not last much longer...

Ah -- reward. On the first bluff Hazel found an antler to chew.

Markus was invited to the special circus area to watch this show by Rhiannon.

...yes, he did put it back on the rock, after...

Rhiannon just collected the rock.

Pappa and Tal looking out at Killarney Lake.
One of the views we saw. You really need to click this to enlarge it, then use the back button to return to this post. Then check out Rhiannon's most excellent viewpoint, in the video, below:

Just over 9 years ago, Markus and I came up to this top bluff to get our Christmas tree.Taliesin was 6.5 months into his life in utero, at that point, making it an interesting and momentous occasion. This is the little stump from that tree we took, and Tal was happy to sit with the remains of "his" first Christmas tree for a photo!

The unidentified but elegant little mushrooms that Rhiannon found growing in the frosty moss.

Snack break!

Notes from Markus' father: These are ground cones (Boschniakia hookeri), sometimes called "Vancouver ground cone" (as opposed to another species, Northern groundcone). These grew from Arbutus roots; they are parasites on ericaceous plants, more commonly tapping the roots of salal.  When fresh, the flowers are dark wine red or more rarely yellow.

Natural Trampolines.

The view of the mainland and passage island.

Climbing down from the last bluff. You wouldn't perhaps expect (or maybe you would!) that after this perfectly well-executed hike/climb around the bluffs all afternoon, sometimes with the leashed dog attached to me, I would nearly trip while stepping out onto the flat road, afterward, and then, having avoided a fall, try to avoid stepping on the dog leash, and thence trip on the air in front of me and stumble out onto my knees on the road. oops. How embarrassing!

One of many many nice arbutus -- but a rare find in such a nice man.

Such a beautiful sunset to welcome us home!

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