Monday, October 13, 2008

Three Guardsmen

Oct.11 2008

Saturday afternoon Don and i took the orange van to go to Haines. Past Haines Junction we can see that it has snowed quite a bit,
but all is melting now. We drive into a little side road, where I have been told are red currants earlier in the season.
All ready, i forgot where exactly that road is. Was it before or after the beaver pond? The beaver dam broke by the way, the pond empty, a field of black mud channels,
still some water in it. Well I did find the road, now I have to make a note, next time, where it is. I didn't drive in it very far, it is very muddy, lots of puddles.

We pass Dezeadeash Lake, which is very grey and choppy. The lakes we pass today, none of them totally frozen, actually some still totally open.
But about their colors; Every shade of grey you can imagine, from black to light grey, and the Three Guardsmen Lake a shining silver.

We still see some ducks, definitely some Mallards. And Swans everywhere! The juveniles harder to see, as they have the color of the water today.
Some lakes just have one family, and on one lake we count atleast 24 adults, and while counting, once in a while, depending on the light,
we get a glimpse of the young.

On the Haines road, it is a drive back in the season, Back to Autumn. It is interesting how we come through winterscapes, then green grass, slush, rain, sunshine,
fall colors, back to snow. The willow is an interesting tree (bush) in this changing seasons landscape. Back 2 months ago it seemed the first
tree to change colors, but now lots are reddish brown, some still yellow green, and some barren.

We see a flock of Canada Geese and Don spooked a flock of Ptarmigan, when walking into the buck brush.

I said we came upon some sunlight. Glorious! I'll print a picture of the Tree Guardsmen, one of them peaking through the clouds.

Enjoying the ride as much as our goal, we always stop many times, and it will be dark before we get to Haines.
One place I always enjoy tremendously is right at the treeline, coming towards Haines. The forest here is magical. From the
road there is not much to it, you're on the summit and suddenly you're in the Spruce forest. But at any season I invite to
walk into that world there. One aspect encountered today. Bright blue blueberries on bright red stems, no leaves. Too bad they don't
taste as good as they look, they taste if they've frozen and thawed out a few times, they probably have.

The ascend today beautiful as ever, the big mountains highlighted by the almost full moon.
Still some 33 miles(the name of a settlement)to Haines along the Chilcat, it is dark when we park the van on the beach right outside of Haines, Moose soup out of the thermos is our meal and we retire early. Our matrass the bison hide i dried, it proves to make for a very warm bed.

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