The Vacation to PG and Back Home in Four Days

We Went on a four day drive to Prince George, BC, to do some shopping that you cannot do here, and to get a change of scenery too. It was awesome. The weather was great, though a little cool a nights in PG, but the days were warm and sunny. We did good as far as the weather goes. It was worth the trip.

The PG man at the Junction of the HWY 16 and 97 where the Fraser and the Nechakco Rivers meet. It was weird to find out the PG man was made of steel instead of wood, but if your want it last, you build it out of steel.

We took these images around 7:30PM Last Tuesday. You can see how great a day it was there.

We seen a moose on the loose, near  the Hart Hwy North of the PG, and some deer heading back to the Skeena Valley,

These deer were near Toply, BC. munching away on the roadside grass.

Oh yah, while we were in PG, we went to the Museum and saw dinosaur bones on display. It was pretty cool to see that. The place w as loaded with kids, as the tour was kid friendly, very noisy. But a cool place to see, I highly recommend  it.

What was weird about this dinosaurs on display was how small his head was compared to the rest of him. I think these guys lived in the water, and ate grass. He was from Alberta, and stood nearly 10 meters tall! A pain in the neck would be an under statement.

On the way back, seeing the downward side of Hungary Hill.

A long hill indeed.

What is noticeable are how few mountains there are in Price George, BC and back along the way to Terrace, BC. You don not really see them until you enter the Bulky Valley (Smithers, BC).

Seeing Hutsunbay Mountain near Smithers, BC is the first real mountain you see before would hit the Coastal Mountains. You see more or less rolling hills for the longest of time, thinking that you are in the flat lands. it makes the roads more manageable.

Good bye PG, it was awesome bring their for all the shopping the nice Hotel we staid at and the wonderful restaurants we ate at too. It was all good. Back home the rain has come back, so it is grey and wet outside. We need this weather badly, as the river is low and the forest are dry. I give this vacation a B+.

The Sweet Spot Of the Season

OK, to let you all know, I did get the Bank loan, or I should say they qualified me for the amount of money I needed to buy the Trailer, The home, But after looking at it, and seeing all the prepares is needed, I backed out of it seeing that there would be months of work needed to move into it. I did not feel the “home sweet home” feeling you would get when you walk into the home and feel right at home. It was not there. So, I said no, and I will wait for the next opportunity for a awesome home to appear on the market.

Apparently, the Bank had no troubles with me, for this size of loan as I fit nicely within the limits of it. The Stress Test that the Federal government put in place was easily passed, and my monthly income was acquit enough to maintain the payments, so I was surprised becuase it was this step that I failed at the last time I asked them.

So all is good. I’m on vacation now. Have the next week to myself. I just binged watch “The OA” a very twisted story about a lady who can travel within dimensions. And take over her own body, and she is pursued by a mad scientist who also wants to travel through dimensions, but want to to control it. The story had some really weird plots.

Sunny Weather

To describe the last few weeks here on the North Coast of British Columbia, is to say, Nothing but sunshine, and a awesome start to the spring season. The weather has being nothing short of awesome. So, it had been t-shirt and suntan for the last few weeks. Though it will all end this Thursday, when our normal weather kicks in, clouds and rain. but the up side is, we need the rain. It is far too dry around here. However, with all this goodness, come forest fire warnings for the deep summer season, which means everyone is working hard to catch up from winter. Which leads into my work as I am on day ten becuase I worked last weekend. Sleep is hard to catch-up on, thought the pay is nice, but sleep is hard to get now that the days are getting longer and longer, and up here in the North, the Sun stays up longer as we get closer to summer. Even at 5am, I can see the morning dawn lights over the horizon.

All I do now is work. Not a happy mixture of when you want to play outside in the sun. The spring projects are in full swing now, and I’m in the race, as the Round-About at HWY 16 and 37 for way stop need to be completed. The local community will love that. No one here has seen a round-about, this should be interesting.

Tomorrow I go and ask my Bank for a personal load to buy a small home in Terrace. I think I have my bases covered for this. I got the job, with great pay, and a down payment, but the deal might be closed faster than My Bank will say yes, as housing in Terrace, BC, is in the super hot market. Wish me luck tomorrow.  It is a trailer that I am about to buy, a cheap one, that should get me out of the compartment I’m in now in Thornhill, BC. I will be very close to my work and right in town. Fingers crossed.

Well, time for bed. See you all tomorrow, hopefully with awesome news as I start the move. Nest week I take a week off from a short vacation time. Might go to Prince George, BC. and sleep.

Our first Spring hike Along the sand bard North of the Skeena Bridge

Just letting everyone know that I am still dealing with some bugs on the blog. I’m not sure what is going on, but I will never use MS products again, as I believe that is the root of my issues. Importing photos is still a challenge. So I’m going to give it a shot today, and see how this will work out. Not sure where the bottle neck is occurring. But I got it to work yesterday. Need more time with it. So here it goes….

Yeah, it worked! The above shot was from me and Suzette did our first hike of spring, Along the Skeena River, just on the North side of the Bridge on the sand bar. There are no alcoholic beverages at this bar I’m afraid. Only sand, at least 2 hectares of it. Ice still floats on the river at the ice break-up still had not finished. But the day was awesome. About 12C, and clear skies. A wonderful spring day indeed. We saw a couple of people out fishing with small rods, did not see them catch anything. but they seemed like they were having fun.

To our amazement, we found the Spiral Rock sculpture that some made from last year. It is still in its same condition from when we first seen it last year at that spot. I thought last year’s flood wiped it out, but the the water never made it over that part of the sand bar. surprise.

 Suzette says we walked 5100 steps on our hike. When I looked at Google Maps, I think we might have walked over 5 KM, sill  quite a  hike so soon after , so we got our exercise after six months during winter. My legs are still feeling it. OH yeah, finding a place to walk over the little creek without getting wet stumped us for a while. We laughed when we saw bear foot prints in the sand, as someone took off their boots and waked through the creek. Cold, is all I can say, and the value of water proof shoes is worth it weight in gold in these parts. still cool out. Seeing the bear foot prints was funny to see. It is still cool out, and there is ice and snow on grown in some places.

 

The clouds seemed to be moving away, out from our area, up the valley. so the day was getting more sunnyer (if that is a word). It was good to get out in the fresh air.

Skeena Salmon Belly Gravel Burn

Is was a couple of weeks ago, when I first heard about “Salmon Belly Gravel Burn,” a derogatory term about all the all people who live in the the Pacific North Coast of Canada, during the spring season period. It reefers to a guy seeing the women as they dress for the new season and it is said that he is swimming up stream, leaving the plenty of fish in the sea, like the wild salmon, and not being able to get a mate, he then dies, washing up on shore of the river bank. They call this gravel burn.

Gravel burn, is when men say that they are not even going to try starting a relationship. They will stay celibate for the rest of their lives. This means less tax payers for Canada, but “oh well,” they say. “There will always be plenty of tax payers to keep the Government going.” No one worries.

It sounds funny when you hear it for the first time. I laughed before I thought about it, hearing it last week. When ever I see my co-worker, I ask him if he still swimming upstream? “He replies” No, buddy, I went back to the sea, the water it too low here.”

This is one of the more hilarious local colloquialism terms I heard around here so far. Romance and fish go hand in hand, it seems in the Skeena Valley.

First Full day of sping2019

Yes, I am back. I had some issues with my domain name renewal time, as the credit card information I gave them was incorrect. That is all fixed now, so I can once again blog. Plus there was lots of stress issues from my work, as that was dragging my home life down a bit. Everything is back to normal now, and even better, spring is here, as it is not winter. And I drove around the valley, taking photos, celebrating the equinox. as from now on the Days rule the Nights. so happy about that too, as we went through a really weird cold snap of Sunny yet cold weather for a bout five weeks.

I have been getting a lot of emails about where I have been lately. Rest assured that I am OK, and fine. I bought a new TV that is 4k, being that it appears that I might be staying in the compartment for a while longer than I want to in Thornhill, BC. House prices are still way out of reach for me for the moment. So, I’m just saving money for that rainy day when something affordable comes along.

spring started so fast around here that the Pussy willows are not out yet, but the trees are starting to turn. You have to look hard in the low area of the valley to see any remaining snow on the ground. Just a drive up on the bench and the snow is still 30cm deep there. But the air is warm and summer like. It feels so nice.

Motorcycles are out on the roads too. along with the girls wearing their short shorts (Daisy Dukes) and T-shirt. Not quite bikini weather yet for them, but we are close. The yoga pants are the norm around here, even the out of shape wear them. Women love them. The guys are still wearing their winter fashion, in the Sun.

I turned on my A/C today, for the first time this year. It still works. My car sat in the Sun the whole day, so it was really hot inside it. The joys of owning a black coloured car. It is an oven during the summer periods.

Happy fiirst full day of spring!

Ice on Williams Creek and Lakelse Lake

Second day using the new telephoto lens, we headed out to the lake. An extremely sunny day, yet cool…, minus ten Celsius cool, with some wind, making me wish I had long underwear on. With all kinds of light, I was finding the lens not bad, as I was getting some really great photos with it. We followed Williams Creek down to the Lake today, a nice little hike.

One thing with this 800 to 1300mm lens, there was no need to walk in the water to get these shots. I stood on the shore, and aimed the camera, five minutes to focus up the lens, and shoot. I have to shoot in Manual Mode with this lens. And I had to use my bare-fingers, as working with gloves was cumbersome.

The little ice pillars look neat. Williams Creek did completely froze over this year. I guess it flows fast enough, that even in minus 15C weather, the water stays liquid.

This is the area where the creek empties into Lakelse Lake. This is where the newer ice sheet collides with the larger lake ice sheet, making this neat effect with the ice.

And lastly, a neat shot of some small chunks of ice scattered on the snow and ice on Lakelse Lake.

The lens was a little bit better to work with, as it seems to like lots of light, but the focusing was problematic, as it took several turns to reach the right focal plain, then another five minutes to fine-tune it to get the focusing sharp. This is not a sports lens, by any means. The cold seems to an issue with the lens when focusing. I will show more images in my next Post of people and things I photographed on the Lake.

Finally Got Out to Photograph

I was a little laid-up with a sinus cold last week. Going outside in the sub-zero weather was not going to happen, no matter how much was being persuaded then. Today, I felt good enough to at least drive round, and spend a little bit of time outside to shoot things with the newest lens I bought on-line. So, without further ado, here are some of the first shots I took with the new lens:

We drove out to the Thornhill, BC Golf Course, which is very close to Copper Mountain. There was just enough light to get some “alright” photographs, but the light was not that great as the clouds were moving fast, and it was getting back to minus ten Celsius. But basically what you are seeing in the shot, is a very large icicle going down the side of the rocks. It is three-quarters of the length of the face, on the front of the mountain, so it could be 800 metres long chuck of ice–vertical? I could only get the bottom of it in this shot. Remember that these are hand-held shots.

Next, we drove back in to town (Terrace, BC) and I was going to try getting some tower shots on top of Copper Mountain, but the light was going fast. The Sun was already below the horizon, and the wind was getting bitterly cold in the minus ten air. So I took one of the Moon instead, while the sky was still bright out.

This image is not cropped. This is what you see at the top end of the zoom lens, straight from the camera. I can only imagine what kinds of Moon shots I will have when the conditions are better to photograph in. I will need a tripod, for sure, and I would like it to be a little warmer out too; shivering is not nice while taking pictures. Focusing this lens is weird too, as it takes several turns to get it right, and once you find the focus, getting that “sweet spot,” is touchy–really touchy. And I think becuase it was so cold out, the lens felt very tight to turn the focus ring too.

So, more to come. 

 

Happy Valentine’s Day!

As usual, I created another Valentine’s Day graphic for the yearly event, and this year I went with the Steam Punk theme. I put in the standard heart shape, with a bunch of 3D gears and “doo-dads” into the art work, to make it look as cool as I could, using the 3D software. I think it turned out awesome, but that is just me. See for yourself.

So, happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

New Camera Lens: 420 to 800mm Telephoto.

New toy: a 420 to 800mm telephoto lens, for my Sony A77 Camera. And when you factor in the crop-sensor size, the lens becomes a 630 to 1200mm lens, just like that. It was bitterly cold, yet clear out, and as soon as I got the lens home from the Post Office, I just had to try it out. Our first stop was just down the Kalum highway, North of Terrace, where we pulled over to an open field, and I snapped a few shots of the surrounding mountains, while there was enough light. I took about ten shots before I got the focusing figured out on the lens, but once I got it, the results were unexpectedly great.

The very first thing I realized about using this lens is, you have to be very still with it. You need lots of light to shoot with it, as a handheld lens, or everything becomes blurry. The second issue was the focusing ring, it is very tight. You giggle around a lot while turning the ring, and loose the shot. Lastly, the locking ring had too many turns before it would lock the lens, and you needed that locking ring tight, or focusing was next to impossible. The camera has to be put into full Manual Mode, as the lens has no automatic features what so ever, meaning you have no auto anti-shake from the camera’s electronics. So, you are back to old school shooting with it.

A must, with this size lens, is a tripod. Once the light levels drop off, you need a tripod for clean, no shake, shots. This lens, you are between F8.3 to F16, at the fully extended rang. So your shutter speed become longer during darker times of the day. And as I found out, with lots of wind, you really need to weigh the tripod down to avoid camera shake, as this lens is super sensitive to movement. I tried taking some Moon shots out at the airport, and the wind was pushing the lens, so slightly, but it was enough to blur the shot becuase I was at less than 1/4 shutter speed. So, needless to say, I have no good Moon shots for this post. Perhaps tomorrow?

The lens did do very well at the minus nine Celsius mark, as it did not fog up. I could only shoot for five minutes in this weather, but the camera and lens held up the whole time I was outside, except for me–I was freezing.