Fall in Nova Scotia

14 10 2009

I just can’t believe that we’re into October already. Where has the summer gone? We had a great summer here, apart from a wet July. But once we were into August, the days were hot and the nights hotter.

Now, there is a chill in the air and definitely a feeling of perhaps snow not too far away. The trees are changing colour and everywhere is amazing.

Last Saturday Jeff and I headed to Falls Lake, to really see the trees in all their beauty. We have always loved autumn, but here the colours are much more varied and more vivid.Autumn leaves 2As we set off up the trail, we heard a rustling and were greeted by a wee ruffed partridge.

Partridge

Up close the reds are dramatic.AMapleBut there are loads of trees to turn yet. You’ll notice how dense these woods are, as they are all over Nova Scotia.

Distant trees 2

I must tell you a story about this area. A few weeks ago Jeff took Cameron for this favourite walk of ours. I will now add Jeff’s story as he wrote it to a friend.

Last weekend Cameron and I went for a walk up to a place called Falls Lake. It is a great lake, about ten miles long and surrounded by a massive decidious forest. Onyways, when we got back to where we had parked the car, we saw this guy who had parked alongside us, reversing a quad bike off his trailer. Nothing unusual in that, everyone and his dog seems to have quad bikes over here. What was unsual was this bike was loaded up fore and aft with well stuffed black bin bags. I asked if he was going camping, “No, hunting. Bear hunting”. So what was in the bin bags? “Bait.” Turns out that bears are quite partial to bread, but really go for the old sugar doughnuts, especially at this time of the year when they are trying to put on the pounds before the winter long snooze. So this guy had a bait site about two miles out in the woods that he had been baiting since the Monday before and Saturday was the first day of the bear hunting season, so this was him off to try and bag his one bear that he is allowed to shoot for the year. He had a remote camera at the site and knew that five different bears had visited over the week and knew the times of day they were most likely to appear. One of them was about twelve feet long when standing on rear legs and stretching paws up, weighing about 300 pounds. Now this bloke is about 5’7″, quite well built, but no Sampson, so how does he retrieve a shot 300 pound bear? “Well, I just sort of get under it and push the front over the front of the bike and then haul the rear over the side and if it’s real big I have to sit on it back down the hill.” Now at this stage Cameron and I were thinking this guy was quite a character. Then he tells us he also does bow hunting. “For deer?” we enquired. “Yeah now, but I used to bow hunt bear.”
Well, that was it. That just dropped our jaws to the ground. We knew some of blokes around here were fairly tough and skilled woodsmen, but bears with a bow?

Now, this tale rather shocked me, as up until now we knew there were black bears in Nova Scotia, but didn’t think they were in the areas we walk! So, before we set off on this hike, Jeff headed to the hunting shop and bought a can of bear spray. This is like a pepper spray that you spray into the bear’s eyes, if one ever gets that close to you. I thought it was abit dear at $50 but we reckoned that if we ever have to use it, then it will be worth it. Oh and what do they do with the bears – make them into sausages! I saw a mincer in Canadian Tire, with pictures of deer and bear on the box.

I can happily report that no bears, prints or any other sign of bear was visible and I was not even too nervous about eating our tuna sandwiches where the lake drops down into this little gorge.

B valley

I will add more photos on part 2 of this story.

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One response

16 10 2009
Louise

Fantastic photos, the trees are beautiful!

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