Friday, August 18, 2017

UPPER VANCOUVER ISLAND

Life continues at an interesting pace.  We are parked with Aileen's sister Anne and her husband John at a friend's property.  My brother in law John R has been with us for a week.  He and the other John were school friends so we all have a long history.  We have been doing some ATVing and geocaching and have had lots of awesome meals together.  Every few days we drive into Port McNeill for showers and to replenish our larders.

John and John along the trail to San Josef Bay

I'm in the cave looking out at John taking a photo of John at San Josef Bay

Lots of fireweed blooming in this whole area

Evening light

Our current parking spot

Neurotsos Inlet on the way to a geocache on the distant point

Looking up Neurotsos Inlet

A huge burl on an old log

More Neurotsos  Inlet

And one more Neurotsos  Inlet looking to the west from closer to Port Alice

The lovely Alice Falls, there was a geocache here too

Sandpiper

What road?  John and John are somewhere in front.

Belted Kingfisher


Late afternoon

Coastal flowers

Off road trucks don't leave much road for us

Belted Kingfisher taken with my Canon 5D Mk2 and 100-400 lens

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

ON THE MOVE TO UPPER VANCOUVER ISLAND

Just a short post.  We left Errington this morning and are south of Campbell River tonight visiting Bill.   Tomorrow we will drive up to the Port McNeill - Port Hardy area.  We will be staying at a friend of John and Anne's in a bit of a remote location.  Not sure how the internet will be for us for the next while.  We lucked out and John and Anne were down to Courtenay today so they towed our RZR up there when they went home.  That means we can hook the car on behind the motor home tomorrow instead of Aileen having to drive it while I towed the RZR.

Friday, August 4, 2017

JELLO PLANS CHANGE AGAIN

Yes, good thing we RVers make our plans in jello so we can change as needed.  The planned BBQ party at Bill's in Campbell has been postponed due to the excessive heat so we are staying a bit longer here at Charlie and Sheila's where we are able to run the AC in the afternoons.  We are still planning to go to the upper Island next week.
Received word last evening that my Dad's last brother had passed away.  He was 93 and still has one sister living.  They were from a family of eight as I am.  He was the only one older than me with the same last name although I have four older cousins.
My brother in law John R and I went for a couple of walks yesterday.  We first walked down some trails along the Trent River from the freeway picking up four geocaches.  We then dropped down the steep bank to the river and walked up it to the falls.  We had to climb up a steep trail with ropes for assistance then dropped down another trail back to the riverbed above the falls.  We walked along the riverbed for a couple of kms before stopping for lunch.
We later went to Brown's River to a spot John had heard of called the Medicine Bowls.  It turned out to be a great spot, although very dangerous in certain conditions.  Best to go on a dry day like we did as the drop offs would be very dangerous if the rocks were wet.  There were plaques honoring three young guys who died there.  Two of them were the same day!  All were from jumping in to the pools from the rocks.  Sad!  I took all today's photos with my little Canon SX50 but would like to go back to the Medicine Bowls with my bigger camera and tripod someday.

Trent River reflections

Trent River Falls at low water.  

Trent River, nice walking in low water

The river mostly runs through shale.  I liked the patterns in this piece of shale.

John and I had a nice place for lunch on a warm day

The Medicine Bowls on Brown's River are the rest of the images

The previous photo was taken from where John is standing

Further downstream

Below the last photo

After having the area to ourselves for a while, four young people showed up

A quiet side pool in the rocks

The lower falls and pool

The steep trail up from the lower falls

Thursday, July 27, 2017

WE MOVED AGAIN

We have finished our stint of house sitting at my cousin Neil's and moved back up to my brother Charlie's in Errington.  We enjoyed our two and a half weeks or so there.  Aileen enjoyed the down time and I did quite a bit of geocaching.  I put lots of miles on my bicycle mostly on old railroad grades that have been converted to multi use trails.
I was quite impressed with all the wildlife we saw in the yard at Neil and Carol's.  In addition to the hummingbird pictured below, there were turkey vultures circling overhead often, bald eagles daily, California Quail, rabbits, deer and several different types of bees on the flowers.
Last Saturday, we attended the celebration of life for one of my younger cousins who passed at 55 after a lifetime of health issues.  Rod was a pretty popular guy in his home town of Chemainus so there was a large gathering in his honour.  Quite a few of we cousins were also there.
While we were in Duncan, we made several trips to Victoria to see Richard and family.   One Sunday, we also drove up to Nanoose Bay to attend the annual celiac barbeque.  What a spread the lady puts on and every thing there is gluten free, including beer and wine.  Good thing it is only once a year. Lots of gluten free options are shared among the attendees such as safe restaurants and good recipes.
Our current plan is to stay here another week or so then move up to Bill's in Campbell River for the weekend of August 5-7 then head up to the north Island until early September.  On Labour Day, September 4, we will arrive at Seal Bay RV Park for our Escapees RV Club Chapter rally which will run all week.  Not sure what will be happening after that other than getting organized for our 50th anniversary party on October 7.  We are including a Pickard family reunion as part of the affair so have been reaching out to the extended family.

Hummingbird at Neil & Carol's

Shot with my Canon SX50, still pleased with what I'm able to get with it

While we were house sitting at Neil & Carol's, I polished the motor home.  These are some of Carol's flowers reflected in the black paint on the motor home.  A Monet effect?

While geocaching yesterday I enjoyed these beautiful Arbutus trees.





The peeling bark is a usual occurrence 


Friday, July 14, 2017

HOUSE SITTING AND GEOCACHING OUTINGS

Once again a bit of a gap between posts.  Initially, I had a sore back so didn't do too much of interest.  As the back improved, I got out geocaching and I think that helped it get better faster.  In the past week, in four outings, I have put on 88 kms on my bike and on foot gathering a total of 112 geocaches.  Certainly one way to get some exercise!
Aileen has been looking after ensuring the plants are all watered here where we are looking after things while my cousin and his wife are on vacation.  She continues to work on transcribing my Mom's diary into the computer.  I edit and print her copy but have to admit I am several years behind her.   She also gave me a haircut this morning.  It seems the less hair I have, the more important a haircut becomes.
We have been to Victoria three times since being here in Duncan.  Richard and Robin have bought a house in North Saanich so we got to see it the other day after Georgia's birthday party.
I have also been busy scanning old negs that I brought from storage.  That is a very slow process and is made more difficult by the fact of not having the correct set up for the old off sized negs.   I haven't even gotten into editing and cleaning them up yet.

While sitting outside reading the other day, I was intrigued by the expressive clouds drifting by.

One evening we went for a drive.  As we were heading out Genoa Bay Rd, I spotted this peek a boo view down to Maple Bay.

Returning from Victoria on one of our trips, we managed to get a view over the Saanich Peninsula with Mt Baker in Washington State slightly visible.  The Canadian Gulf Islands are first then the American San Juan Islands lead in to Mt Baker.

On my first geocaching expedition, I spotted this interesting mushroom.  Unfortunately, after much searching, I didn't find the cache hidden nearby.

Georgia had some friends over to help celebrate her 15th birthday with a pool party at her aunt's place.  That's Richard and Aileen on the left.

On my second geocaching trip, I rode both ways over the historic Kinsol Trestle.  It is the tallest wooden trestle standing in North America and was recently rebuilt and is highly popular as a tourist attraction.


A historic photo taken in 1958

Another old photo taken in 1956

In the Shawnigan Lake area where my last three caching trips took place, the Foxgloves are blooming in abundance.