Spring is . . . for the birds

Rotten snow.  Ice.  Mud.  Bloomin’ willows.  And the occasional spring snowstorm to dump half a foot (now over a foot!) of wet, heavy snow.  Time to put away the skis, snowshoes, ski-doo and snowblower . . . and bring out the rubber boots. The only redeeming quality about Springtime in the Rockies is the annual return of our migratory songbirds.  The Juncos returned about 3 weeks ago, followed closely by the Chipping Sparrows.  Heard, but not yet seen, is a Varied Thrush with his distinctive bell-tone song.  A lone Starling stayed for 3 days before the resident Gray Jays got … Continue reading

In Like a Lion . . .

The first weekend in March was accompanied by a major winter storm across most of central and southern Alberta. According to The Weather Network, a strong low pressure system developed around Rocky Mountain House and sucked in the moisture-laden system from the West Coast that had been pummeling British Columbia with heavy rain. The moisture landed here as snow. A LOT OF SNOW! By the time it quit snowing Sunday evening, we had accumulated almost TWO FEET of new snow. Guests throughout February and the Storm Weekend have enjoyed cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in good snow conditions. Our Australian family … Continue reading

Tumble

I have hesitated writing about Tumble – partly because it may prove to be a long post and not necessarily upbeat . . .and partly because I still tear up every time I think about her life and death. However, I have been reminded several times over the past few months that good friends deserve to be remembered. So, here’s some of Tumble’s story. Two fuzzy, round Border Collies came to the cabins when they were 5 weeks old. Their breeder, a farmer up north in the Peace Country, said the female was too timid to make a good cow … Continue reading

Hectic Holidays . . .

2012 come and gone, and the world didn’t end on the Winter Solstice.  I sat on my rocks overlooking Munn Creek and waited for it . . . rather disappointing, eh? We’ve had a full house at the cabins over the Christmas/New Years holidays, with guests taking time to celebrate at a slower pace up here. Cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, tobogganing/bum-sliding and snow-fort-building have occupied our guests during our short daylight hours.   Spending quality time with one’s family and/or partner, away from other distractions, is what the holidays are all about up here . . . At least, that’s what I think! … Continue reading

CLEARING TRAIL

With gorgeous snow conditions and the premier power saw man (Chris) coming in for the weekend, it was time to tackle clearing the remainder of the “Side-Hill” trail and George’s horse trail down to connect to the Munn Creek Trail.  Chris’ girlfriend, Val, was burdened with homework and had to stay behind – keeping the fires going in the cook house and cabins.  Our repeat guests, Maegan and Anna, opted for much-needed “down time” from their demanding schedules. A cold start to the work on Saturday, but bundled up and hard physical labor soon warmed things up.  Chris and I … Continue reading

Rock Lake Trails Groomed and Track-set

With a couple of inches of new snow yesterday and mild temperatures today, I spent the day re-grooming and track-setting trails down at Rock Lake for cross-country skiing.  It’s 13 km from the cabins down to Rock Lake, with track set down my 3-km road as well as the next 10 km to the Lake.  The ski track is on the far right-hand side of the Rock Lake Road . . . surely (hopefully?) there will be no yahoos in quads or pickups who would deliberately run a tire track down the middle of my ski trail this time! I … Continue reading

Cross-country Skiing at Rock Lake

With guests due in for the weekend, and gorgeous powder snow to work with, I was able to get about 30 km of ski trail groomed and track-set.  Scott and Lauren from Grande Prairie (via the US) and Brian and Tasha from Calgary joined in on a beautiful ski down at Rock Lake . . .AND helped Laura get the pickup out of the ditch. . .     Unfortunately, and all my back-breaking work aside . . .little of the ski track remains intact after two quads were on the trails.  With more snow forecast for the next few … Continue reading

Soft ‘Shoeing, Hard Skiing – LIFE IS GOOD!

We have enough snow to snowshoe, although I didn’t get any trails track-set for cross-country skiing before guests arrived last Saturday for the Remembrance Day long weekend. Chris had come in Friday night to give me a hand getting the ski-doo out and running for the season. Best laid plans . . . Mark and Becci, who have got one of their own missouri cabins back home, opted for a short Saturday afternoon jaunt on snowshoes up the little valley towards the base of the mountain. That trail had been ‘shoed before, so the going was relatively mild. Jon and … Continue reading

First snowshoe of the season

With guests arriving on Friday for a weekend get-away, I made the trip into civilization on Thursday to pick up fresh supplies.  Lots of wildlife were out and about that day, including several grouse, a group of Mule Deer, a few White-tailed Deer and two Golden Eagles slumming with the ravens on a road kill. The temperature was exceptionally mild for the weekend, and Cheryl and Paul were keen to try a short snowshoe trek.  So, down to Rock Lake where the ‘shoeing would be relatively easy, and on to the flat terrain around the Equestrian Overflow, Jackson Creek and … Continue reading

Oh man – do we have SNOW!!

The end of October brought a dump of snow!  Always appreciated and I do love snow . . .but, oh my achin’ back. I’ve been shoveling and blowing snow for the past two days, along with trying to get a snow-track in for our 3-km trail.  The snow blower works just fine . . .until we get above -5C.  Then the blower just pushes snow, and it’s faster to shovel. The Snow Buntings and Pine Grosbeaks are back and delightful to watch (no, these aren’t my photos – courtesy Google Image Search). It’s a town day tomorrow, with guests coming … Continue reading