A Shot of Terrace, Close Up

It was our day out, getting a coffee to go, then taking our beverages to a place to where we could sit and watch the small town go about its business. We first decided on parking over at the arena, but that was dashed as there was a hockey tournament going on. We decided on heading up the Kalum Bench, the look out park, where you can see town through permanently mounted binoculars. This is a great spot for taking photos. But the point was, getting out and enjoying the day, so this was our starting point.

The day was not to bad weather wise. It was overcast, but the clouds were high, and there was some wind, but not a constant breeze from the North. When it blow, you needed a hoodie over your head, but when it was calm it was nice. In this shot, taken with a 300mm zoom lens, is Terrace, BC. When using a telephoto lens, you get the “compressed” effect, and it turns a three dimensional landscape into a two dimensional one. You would be hard pressed into estimating the distance of the Skeena Mall (Very top of the photo) to the bottom row of houses. I guess two kilometres, or more.

This is our Saturday ritual now, or it seems. We take turns driving, usually starting out at noon, and depending on the weather, we either go window shopping, or do a hike on one of the many walking trails in the valley. Today was a window shopping kind of day, though we could have gone out for a hike. It was great just being together no matter what sort of adventure we embarked upon.

Anyway, the day ended with buying a couple of frozen pizzas at the food market in the old Skeena Mall, then going back to Suzette’s place to watch a movie from off the Internet. In all, an awesome day, all around. I was so late getting home, way past my curfew, I will pay getting all my Sunday stuff done on time. LOL

The Winter Sunset that Brings Winter Back into Perspective

I just got home, about 4:00pm, and the Sun’s light was shinning everywhere at my apartment as the day was ending. Normally this would not be a huge event, but when you are living in an area where the days are a lot shorter, the light becomes important. From where I lived before, the difference of daylight compared to Thornhill is almost 45 minutes less a day during the winter Solstice. So you can see my enthusiasm.

This shot was taken from my bedroom window, as this is only one of two windows that I have that are facing South. But you are asking yourself why I would go and take effort to take this shot? Simple, the Skeena Valley gets very cloudy, especially during the winter months, so when you get a awesome stretch of clear weather, you get out as much as you can to enjoy it. Even though the Sun was low in the sky, everywhere was above freezing, even drying up the dampness outside in some parts.

The greatest attraction of having a wonderful winter day in the Skeena Valley are the mountains that tower at every side of this tiny valley. Seeing the snow covered peaks shine with sunlight is in itself an awesome sight. But when the mountain are bathed in the pink light of the setting Sun, the world changes, as you are surrounded in golden to purple shades of light at ground level. It is like being on a different world in a Science Fiction story. For a half an hour, your world becomes changed; something that a camera cannot capture as you need all your senses to experience it at once. This is what makes winter on the North Coast awesome, but do not tell the Southerners this.

A Quick Turnaround On the Weather To Say the Least

Just like that, the temperature climbed from minus ten Celsius to a blustery zero degree, almost sending a shock to my system, in less than twenty-four hours. Last night we had ice pellets falling from the sky, along with a misty rain, causing some icy sections on the roads, and enough to coast the windows on my car. Driving around was not a problem with the black ice on the roads, my snow-tires were more than enough. As promised, the sky was almost clear, with about a quart cloud cover. In all, this is looking like a great day, as the sunlight pours through my bedroom window.

When I woke this morning, I saw the sunlight hitting the North mountains, casting a brilliant pink colour on their snow covered peaks. My vantage point does allow me to capture great photos, for that means a trip down the road–still a little cool for that. Nonetheless, a great feeling, even with the wind howling out. Yes, did I mention the wind?

Here in “Lower” Thornhill, it is also know as, “The Wind Tunnel” as wind seems unobstructed from the North, and like a wind tunnel, the wind just screams through the flats. Else where, usually are calm, with just the hint of a breeze. But usually those places are much cooler as they tend to be in the shade more often during the day.

So, super nice day. Hopefully I will spend some time in it today. I would love to get more photos of the mountains, but we will see. The days are still short, as we are still a while from saying that we are in the middle of winter yet.

Now Comes Warmer Weather; Me Gets the Snow-Shove Ready

The rumour is, some snow is on the way. Right now, we are in the tail end of an arctic outflow weather pattern that has plunged us back into the deep-freeze, but not as bad as before. Hopefully, by tomorrow, we should start to see it warm up a bit, maybe taking us to just above the freezing mark. We can hope. But sadly, the weather prognosticators say some snow is in the forecast as well, as the next weather system is part of the Pineapple Express that will hit the coast.

Hard to say as what I should do. Get the show shovel ready, or the umbrella. Either way, there is a change coming in the weather pattern, and it could be nasty.

As you can see, I brought Mr Egghead back. It has been nearly six months since I last used him here on the Blog, so I thought it was time to bring him back. Actually, I totally redid him in 3D Blender, becuase most of the files I had before were missing from my last hard drive crash back in November, 2017. He has arms now, and I redid his armature for a more streamlined pose when animating him. I still have a more work to do, but I had some time to kill this afternoon, so I worked on Mr Egghead.

What Keeps You Up All Night On the Lily-Pad

For the last four days, sleeping has been a bit of a challenge. Mostly, I wake up in the middle of the night, usually around 3:00am, then drift off around 4:00am, then an hour and a half later, it is time to get up for the work day. This is stress induced from mostly from my work, as inventory is this week, and partly from the weather, as it is freezing out, and very dry. So, add these all up, and sleeping becomes impossible.

I envy the Sleeping Mermaid I bought a few weeks ago, she sleeps through anything. She does not care about anything, as she sleeps on her lily-pad, so peaceful and happy. To sleep like that, I can only dream about it, well maybe not dream, but I envy her nonetheless.

Anyway, hopefully after Friday, it was all change, and my life will go back to normal, and I can sleep again without any stress. Most of my paperwork is finished, and to my knowledge, most of the outstanding issues are corrected at my work. And for the record, almost all of these corrections are what I inherited when I took on this job.

The best part of the week was when I had dinner out with Suzette. We went out yesterday for dinner, and of course, I took her out, but we went in her car. Nonetheless, it was awesome to spend an evening with her, not worrying about anything else in the world, including the dishes. We did Chinese, stuffing ourselves full, and believe it or not, I was still full the next morning. Must be the weather.

Maybe I need my own lily-pad to sleep on…

Let There Be Warmth

Now that we are back to “normal,” as in were I live is back above the freezing mark, and it is liquid water instead of that solid type you have to shovel, falling from the sky. Life is good once again. It appears that the deep-freeze we were in is now gone. We sat in the midst of an arctic out flow weather system for over two weeks, which gave us well below freezing temperature, and in some cases we went as low as minus twenty for a bit, but all it good again as the weather patterns seem to be back to normal again.

The weather changed around Thursday, so this is “day number two” with our day-time highs above the freezing. It is a nice change, but during our cold spell, the days were filled with sunshine and clear nights, so I will miss that. But equally so, I do not have to warm up the car for ten minutes any more. Now we are getting rain with lots of overcast sky, highs of five to seven Celsius. At least we do not have shovel it.

The weather prognosticators say we might be back into what appears to be more arctic weather come next Tuesday, as the freezing weather system creeps back in, but so far their numbers jump around a lot from day to day. The bright side, the next weather system will not be a cold as the last arctic front was. I am, for now, happy that double digit lows are not in the forecast. Being that climate change has presented us with extreme weather, anything is possible, and it would not surprise me, if we end up getting a cyclone or two before March rolls around. Either way, this is my first North Coast winter in over twenty years, and I am dealing with it nicely.

Mom Says Don’t Eat Yellow Snow. But Multi Coloured Ice?

First of all, HAPPY NEW YEAR! This is technically the first true post of 2018. So as always, in keeping with my Blog format, I just skip all the 2017 reflections and 2018 resolutions. So, with that, let me jump into this post, on multi coloured ice. I first saw this last year, just before New Year’s in fact. It was a no-brainer to wait a bit and get a photo of this. Regrettably, the Sun was blocked from the low overcast sky, but I still think the defuse light made the shots just as good.

 I laughed when I first seen the painted icicles on the rock faces of Terrace Mountain. Obviously, another artist was busy at work creating this. I sort of felt like I was steeling the artist’s work, but this is after all this is in the public domain, so it is fair game for photographers. For the record, I did not add the painted colours on the ice. Please do not accuse me of public vandalism or causing harm to the environment–assuming this is some form of lead based paint, or something toxic–this is someone else’s doing. I am just a bystander with a camera who happened to drive by, and stop, to admire it.

I also took some other shots of the non-coloured ice on the same stretch of road. I am surprised the people, or person, did not squirt paint on all the other ice chunks along this road. Anyway, I hope you like it; I thought it was neat.

What to Do On a Nice Sunny Day In Terrace, BC

Well, what do you do on a nice sunny day in Terrace, BC? Simple, if you are like me, you go on a drive, and take your camera along becuase days like this, when you have it off from work, you go out and enjoy it. Off I went, camera in hand, stopping at very rest area I could, and start shooting. When I was done, and feeling the cold, I headed back home, and started going through them all. I picked these three becuase they best represent the view of the landscape along the highway I saw.

I guess I should point out that for the last week, the North Coast has been under an Arctic Outflow Alert, which is weather speak for, “You will freeze your begonias’ off if you are not dressed for it.” We are hovering around the -10C to -9C mark getting down to -15C during the night. But the days have been nothing but sunshine, so “ya”. OK, the above photo is a classic shot of Thornhill, BC, or as the locals like to call it, “Lower Thornhill.” This is looking North, at the Northern Motor Inn, and the Copper Mountain, that big piece of rock sticking out in the back ground.

This next shot is along the Old Skeena River Bridge, but on the Terrace, BC side, right along Terrace Mountain. These are the little water falls that trickle down the rock faces, but being that it is so cold, they turn into icicles, or just blobs of ice. These ones are small, but the good ones to photograph require me getting out of my car, and hiking up trails to get pass the trees. I stayed very near my car becuase of the cold, so shooting only the small ones near the road was as far as I wanted to go. Nonetheless, they look neat, especially when they are clean, white, rather than full of dirt and yellow.

At the end of my drive, I went back towards the Copper River Subdivision, and took this shot. This is looking North, along the Skeena River, just passed Thornhill. By this time the clouds started to move in, so I headed back home.

In all, I took about seventy shots. Later on I will post some more from this batch because there are some really good shots along the highway going towards Prince Rupert, BC. So the whole trip was, starting in Thornhill, then the Rupert Highway, then back to Thornhill towards the Copper River.

With what little time I have left of this looong weekend, I have to cut it short, and call it a day–it’s late. Sadly, I must head in to work for Wednesday, so tomorrow is the last day off freedom. It has been a wonderful, awesome weekend; a must needed time off–I must enjoy these last twenty-four hours of it, right down to the second.

I had x-mass dinner over at Suzette’s folks’ place, where we had the feast, and then watched a movie. It was really nice. A very action packed day.

A Nice Day for Drive

Another awesome day, minus the cold. Suzette wanted to head up town, so we went in her vehicle. I had the camera in hand, and a small list of shopping that I wanted, so it was perfect. During our time in town I met with an old friend from my younger days went I last lived in Terrace, and then we spent the last light driving up to Rosswood, BC. I wanted to get some mountain shots, as the Sun was setting, but there were some clouds, so it did not go as planned. I got some shots anyway.

The above photo is taken along Curtis Road, in Rosswood, BC, about 2km past the Rosswood General Store. Back in the day, this is where you lived if you wanted to go off the grid, yet you were able to commute into town for work. The grid caught up a few years, and so have the hippies. LOL

Meeting old friends can be a awesome experience, especially if you have not seen them for a very long time. Flip-side to that is change, and with change means someone has passed on, so you will meet them again. I had one such meeting like that in the old mall. I had known about my friend from high school, and his struggle with a disease that eventuality robbed him of his life far to early. So talking to his younger sister was all to unreal. She was awesome too talk to in her own right becuase she knows about half of the people I grew up with. But the one thing we cannot stop is time, and with it, attrition of friends from the old neighbourhood. Since my departure from high school, and a brief stint back in the early ’90s, more names have been added to that list of friends who we have lost. But there was a extremely bright side to all of this: some have multiple like rabbits before they left their mortal lives on this planet. My friends maybe gone, but their children live on.

As for Rosswood, the place looked awesome in the snowy landscape. Even on the coldest day of the year, there is plenty to see and photograph. They had some fresh snow, so the trees looked like someone sprinkled icing sugar on them, and with the cold, the snow is here to stay until the thaw. There was no wind, just calm and silence. It is an eerie feeling if you are not use to it.

As for my place, the wind was horrible. More hissing and rumbling, as the wind kept on with its relentless fury. Lower Thornhill, the land of the wind.

No Doubt it is Winter

Day one of the looong weekend, and already, only twenty-four hours into winter the air tingles with frost, and the wind hisses outside. Ice is forming on my bathroom window, as that is the only single pane window in the apartment–yes I have thermal plastic covering it. Everywhere else in the apartment seems to be holding out well from the deep-freeze. Actually, I cannot complain as it could be much worse than it really is. As the “old timers” say, this cold only lasts for a couple of weeks, then it all thaws again. Great news to hear, but I am dealing with it in good spirits.

The car runs excellent in this cold, and no issues with my apartment either, so I am happy. It looks like the apartment was built very well to handle the arctic out flow weather like this. Actually, as I type this out, I can hear the wind blasting away, making that hissing sound, as it passes through the trees near by. I almost forgot what winter was like, living down South for so long. Oh, we will have a white holiday that is guaranteed.

I did some shopping today. Bought some neat stuff. One of the items I bought was a clay “Sleeping Mermaid” on a water lilly-pad figurine. Very cute. I will post a photo of it in a couple of days.

Well, time to rest and get ready for day number two of my four day weekend. Despite the cold, I can say, “this is the life.” I just hope I do not gain too much weight from lazing around for to long.