Photo Blogging Challenge – Outside (September 2013)

I’m scrambling a bit to meet the posting deadline for this challenge. (In fact, I think I’m already a day late.) For some reason, I’m finding it more difficult than usual to catch up with the backlog after being away for a week. Enough excuses…

I had the pleasure of spending a lot of time outside in September, enjoying sunshine, rain and snow (yes, already). Between a few meetings downtown, a couple of hikes and a week at the Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre on the west coast of Vancouver Island, I also managed to photograph cityscapes, landscapes and seascapes. Here are five of my favourites taken over the course of the month:

  1. Beakerhead – From September 11 – 15, Calgary hosted its first annual Beakerhead: a series of public events and activities all of which incorporated a smash-up of art, science and engineering. While my participation was limited to checking out the Raygun Gothic Rocketship and enjoying the festival atmosphere on Stephen Avenue Mall, K attended Sustainival and the final day of the International Engineering Competition, where teams of university engineering students were challenged to create a calculator from a piano and a set of billiard balls.

    Raygun Gothic Rocketship

    The Raygun Gothic Rocketship was set up just outside of Calgary city centre and was open for public access during the five days of Calgary’s first annual Beakerhead event.

  2. Pocaterra Ridge Hike – After Labour Day weekend, Alberta Parks was finally able to open the Highwood Pass area of Kananaskis Country (closed all summer due to flood damage). This is our most favourite part of K-Country and we headed out for a hike the very next weekend: part way along Pocaterra Ridge . The weather was fantastic and – as demonstrated by the purple flea bane flowers and golden trees and grass – we witnessed a mash-up of summer and fall all along the trail.

    Tarn on the way to Pocaterra Ridge

    Tarn on the way to Pocaterra Ridge

  3. Ptarmigan Cirque Hike – Our hike along Pocaterra Ridge turned out to be just a too little early to view the larch in their golden glory, so Mr. GeoK and I hiked Ptarmigan Cirque several days later. This time out, we observed the clash between autumn and winter.

    Highwood Ridge and golden larch at Ptarmigan Cirque

    Highwood Ridge and golden larch at Ptarmigan Cirque

  4. Bamfield – The last week of September, I accompanied 4 teachers, the school principal, 5 other parent volunteers and 98 grade 9 students from the Calgary Science School to the Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre where we took part in four days of labs and outdoor excursions that filled our brains with information, thoughts and lots of follow-up questions about marine environments. My favourite activity was the half-day we spent at Brady’s Beach, exploring the tidal pools. K took a short break from his observations to smile for this photograph.
    K at Brady's Beach

    K at Brady’s Beach

    Bamfield has interesting geography. The hamlet (pop. < 200) consists of east Bamfield (where the BMSC is located) and west Bamfield (accessible only by boat). West Bamfield is quite picturesque, with most buildings finished in red and white. I enjoyed a long walk along the seaside boardwalk to search for a cache hidden near "Penny Lane". This photo of West Bamfield is taken from the BMSC docks, where we pulled up ropes and cables to study the marine life residing there.

    West Bamfield viewed from the BMSC docks

Thanks to P.J. over at a ‘lilhoohaa for hosting this monthly photo blogging challenge. Click here to see P.J.’s photos of “outside” and to access a list of other photo blogging posts for month seven of this challenge.

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16 thoughts on “Photo Blogging Challenge – Outside (September 2013)

    • Someone found one of our geocaches in Kananaskis country this week and they said it was buried under about 30 cm (1 foot) of snow already! The skiers are rubbing their hands together in anticipation of early opening!!

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    • I got lucky in September, spending time in and around our home base in Calgary / Canmore PLUS the bonus of visiting the west coast of Vancouver Island for the first time in my life. That Bamfield added a lot more diversity to my photo set for September.

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    • Thank you – I hope to put up another hiking blog post from this coming weekend. We’re planning a return visit to our favourite “off the beaten path” hike in Kananaskis Country. I expect there will be snow on the ground but have my fingers crossed that there are still some golden needles on the larch trees.

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    • Ha ha!! I think you make that comment about coming west one of these days just about every month. 😉 This is a beautiful part of an amazing country (not that I’m biased or anything). I would actually like to get to the Maritime provinces some time. My brother and his wife just finished a motorhome tour of eastern Canada and can’t stop raving about L’Anse aux Meadows.

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  1. What a great set of photos! And snow already? Yikes! Though it did make for a good image. When hiking out to something like that … and if things change as you go, how do you dress?

    I also love the image from the Pocaterra Ridge hike. What a beautiful shot!

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    • Hi PJ – Great question! We’e learned (the hard way – through first-hand experience) to always pack layers. In fall, my pack usually includes a full set of thermal underwear, my gaiters, a toque and really good gloves. I also pack a few of those hot pocket hand warmer thingies that activate when exposed to air and an emergency fire starter kit (includes fire starter, my supposedly hurricane-proof lighter and waterproof matches). I also have full rain gear along no matter what the weather forecast. Six or seven years ago we got caught in an unexpected blizzard the first weekend of August. Because the temperature was just above freezing, it melted as it hit us and our youngest ended up in the early stages of hypothermia. So we also carry one of those foil emergency bivvy sacks and a camp towel. Oh – and we now carry neoprene gloves, too. Yes, my day pack weights a little more than I’d like it to, but I’d rather be prepared than run into serious problems on the trail due to exposure.

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