The best weather for the weekend
was probably Saturday morning so I decided to go out for a walk at
East Sooke Park. I've been to East Sooke Park lots of times,
but this was my first time at the Silver Spray trail head.
This trail head skips a few km of walk in and out so you are at
the beach within a few minutes of arrival. Not a lot of
parking through so don't tell anyone.
The tide was low so the rocks around the bay had small exposed
pools with interesting things to see.
When I was recently in Hong Kong I saw a probe lens for sale used
(sadly, for an incompatible mount). Doing a bit of research,
I saw lots of wide angle macro photos so I thought I would try a
bit of that today. The blood star below was probably the
most successful, but it's worth remembering there is more than one
way to approach macro.
have a bit of a soft spot for succulents (and I don't think I'm
alone) so I was really happy to see the rock bluffs here covered
in Stonecrop in a wide variety of colors.
the colour is somewhat dependent on how much sunlight the plant
gets, but I don't really know.
Of course stonecrop aren't the only noteworthy plants. I
spotted Chickweed Monkeyflower growing right in the middle of the
trail between some larger rocks. There are ferns growing on
many of the surfaces and salal anywhere with a bit more
soil. In a creek I found the skunk cabbage in full
bloom. The park is quite the garden. Last fall was
unusally warm for an unusually long period of time (salmon
couldn't swim up empty streams) so it was nice to see plants had
survivied and were doing well in the spring.
On the way out, I snapped a photo of the spit in Sooke. I
don't think I have ever walked it - another thing for the bucket
Shaw Centre for the Salish Sea
I have been to the Shaw Center for the Salish Sea before, but
apparently I didn't take photos. Aquariums and Zoos are hard
for me, but I have some rules. I don't attach the species
even though they are often labeled in the exhibits. I don't
take photos of performances. We'll see if I make more rules
in the future.
Aquariums have come a long way in the last decade or
two. It was once about who had the largest animal in
captivity - whales, sharks and other Marine Mammals. Wild
Capture is now mostly frowned upon so many of the animals are now
unreleasable rescues. I'm quite impressed with the smaller
catch and release aquariums like in Tofino or Gibsons. I
didn't ask how the animals here live, but I was happy they
highlight the smaller (and often amazing) animals of the sea.
They had a nice Kelp art exhibit on at the end which matched
nicely with Nara's science fair project. Even better was the
post aquarium shopping! Sidney has a number of stores
selling ecologically themed items so Nara's tiny wardrobe got
A Few Other Walks Outside
The weather turned out to be nicer than the weather prediction
suggested and there were four parents at home so we went out for a
few more short walks.
I went for a brief walk with my
Mom at Swan Lake. I've been to Swan Lake lots of time, but
this was the first time I really noticed the Violet Green
Swallows. The morning I was there, these swallows were the
most common birds around and they were flying over the lake eating
insects. I had my long lens so I tried shooting freehand for
a while. It's more of a "spray and pray" style, but I was
happy with a few of the pictures.
We walked over the floating bridges into the fields and there
wasn't much else about. As we walked to the car we spotted a
large patch of White Fawn Lilies growing under some trees, but
none close enough to take easy photos of.
Another day I got an itch to walk around Uplands Park.
Uplands Park is a spring wildflower hotspot but this year the
flowers are bit late. It was near the end of the day
for light (and I didn't have a tripod) but it was still nice to
The information boards at one of the park entrances mentioned
butterflies at this park. It's nice to know there is yet
another thing to chase in this park.
Another outing - we took the kids to Outerbridge park. This
park is close by so it's really accessible, but it's also good to
get the kids out for a walk. Again, we found white fawn
Last but not least is my favorite thing to do on the ferry if
leaving Swartz bay in the day - walk over and watch the cormorants
on the pilings. The birds don't seam to mind the ferry close
by so you get quite a nice view.
Thanks parents for having us over!
Garry Point Park, Richmond
sunny spring day is a rare occurrence so I decided to go out for a
walk. The kids had projects underway so no one had time to
join me. I wanted a place I hadn't been in a while so I
picked Garry Point Park in Richmond for a walk. I didn't
know when I left the house, but it was low tide.
First I walked around the park proper and spotted a few migrants
taking advantage of the exposed mud.
After a walk around
Garry Point, I decided to walk up the sea wall. I spotted a
muskrat in the reeds.