A flashback to summer camping in Northwest BC and the Yukon. Inspiring region, nice views, do bring a map. Stick around long enough, and the place imposes a certain humility on you. A taste for the abandoned, all ye who enter. And a penchant to instil a little pick-yourself-up-by-your-bootstrap-ness. Do it yourself. Yes, those are trees “planted” upside down. This is a thing in Atlin, BC.
When I was a kid my class went camping. At one point we were split into two groups and led out along two separate roads, running parallel to one another and maybe a mile apart. Then we were divided into pairs, given a compass and a lesson on how to use it, then sent off to find other pairs of kids who, we were told, were headed in our direction from the other road. This was called “orienteering” and apparently […]
small town rituals (a new thing) One. That basic act of communion with the extended back yard, out those tendrils of footpaths and trails and shortcuts and the scratches and nicks that go with them. Traces of all these nonesuch moments – yours and others’, settled in under this year’s brambles and moss. It gets under your skin and digs in and claws you back out there to snoop, stop, wander some more. Site fidelity.
It’s called a rainforest for a reason – it’s slick and mucky and deliciously fecund. The water and wood fibre and soil and moss just meld together. I’m a bit obsessive about tramping through these woods, especially around waterfalls. I know I’ll get soaked anyway, so rain doesn’t really deter me. I find myself clambering up slopes, wedging myself through moss-soaked tangle of forest using trees and roots for handholds. You get familiar with water in a rainforest – what it […]
We decide to spare a turkey this year and go for a hike instead. Fate decides to reward us with a bounty of October berries on a quiet ski hill, a dust of snow just near the top run, otherwise resplendent in oranges and yellows and greens. An owl takes interest and follows along for a while. I have decided that this is kind of omen, not good or bad, just something to be thankful for. A turkey was spared. […]
Muskeg bog day, plenty of berries still and everything soaked through and through. A break in an Northwest October deluge: this is really the time of year for muskeg. Every inch resplendent in dripping detail. Short tromp through the spongy goop to a lake and back again. Get yourself hydrated.
Call me weird. My bucket list includes being devoured by a bloodthirsty monster. Wait, let me explain… in a movie, I mean. Summarily dispatched, an anonymous extra in some B-movie: my demise a gratuitous, horrible and darkly humorous detail. The briefest of moments will do – just enough to announce loudly to fellow movie-goers: “SEE THERE?! THAT’S ME!” If I’m to make it on the silver screen, let it be a senseless and trivial sacrifice. I have no idea where […]
Categories: Art & Literature, Creative Writing, Description, Documentary, Movie, photography, Story, Travel • Tags: abandoned, alaska, film, hiking, horror, humour, mine, mountains, Northwest, Stewart, Trollhunter!
A friend once called me “shaggy”… not a reference to Scooby-doo but more to the neck of woods where I live, work, and play. And it’s a fair statement I guess. The temperate coastal forest boasts a certain… unkempt appeal. Good words to live by, I’d suppose. A few pix from this weekend’s hike up the “Blaine Burn”, a nearby hike I’ve been meaning to do for a few months now. It’s a twisted and well-rooted slog that reminds you […]