Summer has gone – Fall is Here!

18 10 2010

Yesterday we had to make a trip over to Falls Lake to see the autumn colours.  I think we’ll still have a couple of weeks before the leaves all go, but the drive was beautiful and the hillside beginning to show the variety of colour.

We liked this chipmunk crossing.

There were orange leaves,

yellows

and reds.

These lichen always amaze me.

From the lake you look down the valley. This is a holding tank for the Hydro electric turbines further down.

I always think this is a Scottish Highland Glen.

The colours are just a feast for the eyes.

Can you spot the bald eagle sitting in this tree?

Each turn in the path seemed to produce another blast of colour.

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On the way home I took these photos at a different lake. What a great location for a cottage!

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We’ll walk at Falls Lake over the winter, but it will be a very different walk without the fall colours.

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Blomidon Provincial Park, Nova Scotia

3 11 2009

We finally made it across to Blomidon Provincial Park, another of our favourite places, especially in the fall. The park closes at Labour Day week-end in September, but that just means you can’t take your car right into the park or camp at the sites.

We started out along the Jodrey Trail and took this photo looking back along towards Wolfville.

c iew from prk

There were still some leaves left on the maples, beech and oaks, but a greater number on the ground.c leaves

The holes in this dead tree amazed us, but I have been reading that they were probably made by the pileated woodpecker. That is a bird we haven’t spotted yet. It is large and makes these holes to get at ants and other insects. It then makes its nest in one of the holes. Other birds and animals use the other holes for their nests.

c woodpecker at work

I copied this picture, but hopefully I’ll get my own photograph next year.

pileated-woodpecker

All of the camping sites have their own picnic bench and fire pit, just like the Five Islands Provincial Park we visited in September. When we were there we looked across the Bay of Fundy to Blomidon, this time we looked back to the Five Islands Park.

camping spot 1

These bracket fungi look as if they are little shelves or steps on the trunk. Perhaps even some wonderful sculpture.

bracket fungi

On the way home we passed a bluberry farm and I had to take the bushes with their scarlet leaves.

blueberry fields





Fall in Nova Scotia (Part 2)

18 10 2009

Here are some more of the photos we took last week-end at Falls Lake.

There are lots of different varieties of aster flowers around just now, both purple and white. But the cold weather is hitting them and they are struggling to survive.D Flowers

These lichen look like foam on the water or an early fall of snow.

Lichen 2

These are another variety.

Lichen 3

We think this must be a beaver’s lodge, but we saw no sign of any animals in the water or around it.  Any ideas? (See helpful comment at the bottom.)

Beaver C

We thought this was worth a photograph. This pipe is taking water down from the lake to a turbine. It seems it needs some work.

Water pipe C

The colours of the leaves, the trunks and the bright sky remind me of a wonderful day. We will walk here again during the winter, but it will be another year before we see it in such splendour.

Trunks 1





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.