Union Bay Coal Hills

Large chunks of black rock on the beach at Union Bay are remnants of the area’s historic use as a coal shipping terminal between 1888 and the 1960s. Pilings are other evidence of historic industrial activity at Union Bay. I’ve lived in the Comox Valley for some time now but have never walked out into the coal waste hills at …

Finding the Source of Nile Creek

One often hears off-hand mentions of interesting locations that other photographers have been to: the name of a small creek, a description of an out of the way waterfall, vague directions to the location. These places are usually a little off the beaten path, but still relatively accessible and well used by locals.  One of the first of many little drops …

Herring Spawn Head’s Up

It’s all in the timing and it’s easy to miss. Last spring I was lucky, and the kids and I witnessed the amazing spectacle that is this country’s largest annual Pacific herring spawn. In other years, I’ve been a day or two late or early. The aquamarine colour of the water is a sure sign that the spawn is on! This …

A Slow Morning Down at Little Qualicum River

The grey days of winter on Vancouver Island can be excellent for photographing rivers and waterfalls. With the cloud cover, the light is even and flat so you don’t get the high zones of contrast between the dark sides of the river bottoms and the sunlit trees on the ridge above. I’ve organized a “Slow Photographers SIG” within the Comox …

Free Spirit Spheres

Guest Post by Rachel Dodds As the wind blows, you gently rock back and forth hearing the whistle of the wind and the rustle of the leaves. Sometimes bears and elk walk underneath – oblivious to you watching. There is something quite surreal to realize you are hanging from a tree! The sensation is like being on a boat but …

Trent River Falls

Last fall when I hiked up the Trent River I met some people who told me about a spectacular waterfall on the downstream side of the Inland Island Highway. At that time I did a bit of research on-line and talked to a couple of friends who had been into the Trent River falls—it sounded like an easy walk (aside …

Herring are Here!

It was such a gorgeous day on Sunday that I packed the kids in the car and headed down to Parksville. Both A and C love the playground on the waterfront, and it was a pretty easy sell to get them moving. Typically, we try to work a nature walk (or two) into any day trip and I figured that …

Kye Bay Beach Walk

I had a couple of hours to myself on Saturday afternoon and thought that I’d walk from Kye Bay through to Air Force Beach and back. It didn’t take too long and the tide was low so I had plenty of beach and tidepools to explore. Water flows from one tide pool on the flats into another, draining as the tide drops. …

Neck Point Nature Walk

We’re not a really a family that enjoys shopping, especially for non food items. I tend to hit my threshold very quickly and can’t remember the last time I spent longer than a hour in a mall looking at clothing. Typically we try to plan our urban consumer experience like a military exercise—clear objectives, get in, get what we need …

Ammonite Falls

I’ve been working on slow exposures and moving water over the last couple of weeks so that was a good excuse to take a side trip out to Ammonite Falls while in Nanaimo running errands. I did a little research on the internet to figure out how to get to this “little visited” water fall that is a bit off …