It is cherry blossom season again.
Richmond Nature Park
It's been an unusually cool spring this year so when
even passable weather falls on the weekend you want to make the most of
it. I had a few hours free so I decided to go to a park I've
never been to before - The Richmond Nature Park. This is a square
park in the middle of Richmond that shows the boggy terrain Richmond
used to look like. There is large nature house and a number of
trails you can walk around in the bog and keep mostly dry feet.
The park is ringed on all sides by major roads (and a
railroad track) so there isn't much wildlife getting into this park
unless it flies or lives here full time. There was a Coopers Hawk
(or so said the staff - they are almost identical to a sharp-shinned
hawk) hanging out in the park while we were there and the "birders"
(the people with the big lenses) were quite exicted to see this bird.
The park maintains a number of bird feeders around the
nature house so if you are patient there is lots of wildlife to be
seen. I'm not a huge fan of birdfeeder art, but a large number of
wildlife photos are taken very close to man introduced food.
It was a quite a tough walk - exposure was a constant problem and
focusing on birds is never easy. It was hard introduction to a
summer of taking photos.
For a while there it was looking doubtful
there would be any blossoms
this year. Vancouver is a fantastic city for Cherry Blossoms -
there are many streets lined with beautiful trees. This spring
was abnormally cold for a long time so the trees were weeks later than
Bike the Blossoms
Doing something different this year, Helen and
I, Sean and Catherine
decided to do the "Bike the Blossoms". There is a prescribed bike
route and a number of events happening around the city. Slow Food
Vancouver took a lead role in organizing events. Helen was
feeling a bit under the weather, so she drove the "support
vehicle". Our first destination was Commercial Drive and
the a small market showing local farms.
Different vendors supported the events by having samples or
discounts. I'm not sure Terra Breads was associated, but they
were certainly swarmed with bikers doing the route. There were
enough bikes to slow down traffic on many of the bike routes we biked.
finished at Van Dusen Gardens. Van Dusen has many different trees
and they have a few substantial cherry blossom groves. We went
for a walk about looking for photogenic places to be photographed with
Thanks for organizing and a nice bike
Low Tide at Stanley Park
Stanley Park is impressive. Sure, it
forests, large fresh water bodies and many examples of wildlife asking
for handouts. As if there weren't enough bounty, you only have to
walk a few steps off the sea wall to visit the Ocean. Stanley
park has a number of sandy beaches where people like to swim, but my
goal was the rocky beaches with swift current found close to lions gate
Good tide pools aren't easy to find. The best ones like Botanical Beach
on the west
coast of Vancouver Island are worth the drive out to visit. That
said, finding a "pretty good" beach that is close by can be a
treasure. This is my second scouting trip Stanley Park - my first trip
was to beach that turned
out to be too sand and turned into battleground between seagulls and
seastars. This beach was much better - plenty of sea stars and
the mussels they like to feed on.
tide must be a rough time of the day for a sea
star. When low tide coincides with noon, it has to be especially
rough. Sea stars are found hiding under every ledge available at
the low tide zone. The much harder purple stars seems to be okay
with lying exposed but the sunstars can be watched heading for deeper
cover or water. The purple stars don't seem to mind that
the sunstar (which are a predator) are hanging about.
Combining a view of the stars and the bridge is too easy. When
the sun does peak through the contrast can be very high making for
Tags: sea star(13), tide pool(8), Stanley Park(6), Richmond Nature Park(6), cherry blossoms(3), biking(2)
People: Catherine(2), Sean(2), Helen(1), John(1)
From: John Harvey Photo > Blogs for 2020 to 2005 > April 2009
Last Modified Tuesday, June 9th, 2009 at 01:41:58 Edit
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