A Sad Day for Strathcona Provincial Park

Bedwell Lake is accessible by fairly good trail from the Buttle Lake corridor of the park (if the suspension bridge at the trail head isn’t damaged). BC Parks turned 100 just over a month ago on March 1st, 2011. On March 11, 2010, the BC Liberal government quietly and radically amended the Master Plan of Strathcona Provincial Park, the first …

A Mountain Tree: Yellow-cedar

Guest Post by Jocie Brooks On a sunny Saturday during the recent cold-snap I took a morning off to do some cross-country skiing at Mt. Washington, gateway to Strathcona Provincial Park. The smooth, creamy-white snow glistened in the morning light, studded with troops of frosted trees. They call this “Paradise Meadows” for a reason; it’s a spectacular place and feels …

Marvelous Mudflat Snails

A couple of weekends ago we enjoyed a sunny trip down island to Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park. This BC Park is a fantastic place for kids and in the winter time the number of people using the trails and beaches are few(er) – note that on a sunny day there are still plenty of people out enjoying the park. The …

Orchids at Little Qualicum Falls

The Upper Falls at Little Qualicum Falls Provincial Park on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. Last week my afternoon destination with the kids was Little Qualicum Falls Provincial Park, just outside of Qualicum Beach, Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The falls are truly spectacular, there’s nothing “little” about them! However, I was also searching for late spring blooming plants and wasn’t disappointed …

Miracle Beach Birdwatching

Miracle Beach Provincial Park on Vancouver Island, British Columbia provides a good place for both forest birds and marine birds. It has a great mix of “old growth” Douglas Fir, Big Leaf Maple, and open, well established Red Alder (in the campsite area) as well as stream habitat alongside Black Creek, productive estuary habitat at the mouth of the creek, …

Guess that Gull

I admit that I struggle with identifying gulls. Not only do you have to deal with four years of different plumages, you have to deal with hybrids as well. It can be extremely challenging and there are many opportunities to second guess yourself. In situations like those, sometimes it’s better to simply close your eyes, wait until the gull is …

Brown Clustered Ear Cup

If you keep your ear to the ground you never know what you might see on your next walk in the woods. The Brown Clustered Ear Cup (Otidea alutacea) looks like delicate ears poking up through the moss. In actuality, it is a cup fungi. Brown Clustered Ear Cup (Otidea alutacea) We found a group of these cup fungi growing …

Lungwort

Lungwort | Lobaria pulmonaria November storms provide an opportunity to look at lichens that are usually a little higher up and out of reach. This week, while walking at Miracle Beach Provincial Park during a lull between squalls we found some beautiful Lungwort (Lobaria pulmonaria) on a branch of Big-leaf Maple that had blown down in the high winds. Lungwort …

Crinoid Country

Imagine being able to travel back in time million years. What would you see? Crinoid stalk – side profile with jackknife for scale (Marble Meadows). Our visit to Karst Creek in early November enabled us to do just that, at least in a figurative sense. The limestone, or karst, landscape of the Karst Creek Trail in Strathcona Provincial Park is …