<![CDATA[Travel Photography and Blog - Travel Blog]]>Tue, 06 Feb 2018 19:28:41 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[the Scablands of eastern washington]]>Sun, 26 Feb 2017 21:58:22 GMThttp://daveleephotography.com/travel-blog/the-scablands-of-eastern-washington
Dry Falls
Exploring the Scablands of Washington State.

Dry Falls and Palouse Falls

We are on the road again, from Chilliwack, BC. to the channeled scablands of eastern Washington state. An ice age flood, 12,800 years ago, scoured away the soil and carved massive channels in the basalt volcanic rock of eastern Washington State. We are on our way to Dry falls and Palouse falls to see the damage from the flood for ourselves.

We were inspired to explore the scablands, after reading Graham Hancock’s latest book “Magicians of the Gods”. Published in 2015 the book, explains a new theory about the origin of the Scablands and the Columbia Gorge. Something often inspires our trips, we read a book and we want to see it for ourselves.  Grahman Hancock’s books, are backed by extensive research, by reputable scientists. I have always found his alternate views, of human and world history very credible. (see links for more on Graham Hancock’s Books)

The flood that created the scablands, was caused when the melt water from Glaciers that covered North America roared over the state. The accepted theory for the flood, is that an ice dam broke, that was holding back Lake Missoula. This ice age lake, was the size of lake Michigan. J Harlen Bretz, an experienced field geologist, with a doctorate from the University of Chicago, put forth this explanation in a 1923 paper.  Bretz was laughed at and ridiculed by his fellow geologists, when he proposed the massive flood that occurred was catastrophic event that happened over a short period. Geologists tend to believe that geologic processes occur gradually over a long period, not over a period of weeks. Bretz’s explanation was finally accepted as there was no other explanation at the time that stood up.

 Recently a problem with the lake Missoula theory, was discovered, when modern computer calculations of the water volume in lake Missoula, proved that the volume of water in lake Missoula was not large enough, to do the damage that occurred to the landscape.

The latest theory, is supported by evidence, found in the soil layer, dated to 12,800 years ago. This layer contains Nano diamonds that form under high heat, and pressure, and are recognized as evidence of meteor and comet impacts. It has been accepted by many scientists that comet fragments measured in km, struck the North America and European ice caps. This event is the most likely source of the flood stories that are found in cultures all

over the world. The melting ice caps caused a rise in sea level that covered low lying coastal plains worldwide. There were massive extinctions of mammals and extinctions of human populations that lived the coastal plains.

This event caused worldwide cooling, known as the Younger dras period. This period of sudden cooling period lasted 1000 years due to the material that was thrown up into the atmosphere from the comet impacts.  The sun was blocked and the cold water from the melting ice caps disrupted the ocean currents.

The melt water from Washington drained into the Pacific via the Columbia gorge. The Columbia Gorge is an awe-inspiring wonder of geology, looking from the top of the gorge, you cannot help but wonder how it was formed. No explanation seemed adequate for the formation of the gorge until now. The massive flood left boulders along the slopes leading to the gorge, it is estimated that the water filling the gorge was over 1200 feet deep. This turbulent flow full of Ice bergs containing boulders of all sizes formed a dam, at Wallua gap, a constriction of the Colombia gorge and caused water to back up the river. It built higher and higher, until the pressure pushed it through the gap. This process continued until the flood abated and the last of the water drained out to the Pacific, leaving boulders along the flood route as the ice melted.  Massive channels are eroded in the seabed off the mouth of Columbia river as evidence of the violent flow of water that occurred.

 Dry falls our first stop presents a dramatic eroded basalt escarpment dropping 600 feet to the lake, at the bottom of the gorge. The flood poured over the falls, estimated at six times the size of Niagara. This was the largest waterfall; the world has ever seen.  When you stand at the dry falls lookout, it is hard to imagine, water towering 300 feet over your head. The chaotic scene would have had massive ice bergs, crashing, and flowing with the water and carrying mountain size boulders over the falls. The falls was undercut and the cliff fell into the pool below. Over the few weeks of the flood, the falls eroded backwards, 15 miles from current soap lake to where dry falls is today. We stood in awe at the view, taking photos of dry falls, and contemplating what occurred here. Leaving dry falls, we travel south down grand coulee between the eroded cliffs and past massive eroded buttes and mesas.  The pictures don’t do this place justice, the scale is hard to believe unless you see it.

The Lenore caves are an interesting stop along the road. The caves resulted from the flood and were enlarged by freezing and thawing and further breakdown of the basalt. The caves were used as shelter and food storage caches by native American’s, that lived in the area.

A couple of hours drive over the prairie, past the boulders buried in the ground, left from the flood, we reach the town of Moses Lake. Moses lake was originally a shallow natural lake that was dammed to form a reservoir for irrigation water. The Best Western on the shore of Moses lake was our home for the next couple of days while we explored the area. This peaceful location on the eastern shore of the lake has a beautiful view.( request a waterfront room if you visit). The motel faces west and there is panoramic view from the floor to ceiling windows of the dining room  The sunsets were beautiful, with the rippled lake fading into the aqua blue of the sky and the silhouettes of the hills, trees, and buildings, against the orange of the fading sun.  Moses lake is the largest city in this region with a population of 20,000.
The next day we drove east towards Palouse falls, across the rolling prairie and watched the farms pass by. Boulders, dropped here when the ice bergs got stranded, rise like small islands in the farmer’s fields, with grain planted all around. We pass through the small farm towns; the grain silos are the largest structures in town. 

The landscape driving to Palouse Falls
 We reach Palouse falls after a pleasant drive under blue skies, the white clouds sailing across the prairie cast dark shadows that slide across the golden wheat. Palouse falls, is a remaining remnant of the water that flowed during the flood. it plunges over a basalt rock falls into the foaming aqua green water of the pool below. The rough basalt cliffs line the pool and river gorge, evidence of the massive flood that flowed 12800 years ago.

The park is a quiet place and only a few tourists are walking the trails along the cliff top.  Marmots, living on the edge, of the cliffs in the crevices and rocks came out to warm themselves in the sun. They groom for our photo op and we take the required photos of the cute furry performers.

Marmots Grooming
Palouse Falls
Back on the road we take an alternate route to Moses Lake. The afternoon traffic is sparse and we make good time back to our hotel. After a meal overlooking the lake and our last night’s stay we depart in the morning for home. I marvel at what we have seen and how catastrophic geological events can occur. Extinctions of species can happen, including man but we survive. It makes you think about what other events are in our future, is another undiscovered comet lurking in space, that will drop in unexpectedly.

Links to travel apps -and further information for this story.
Dry Falls

Palouse Falls

This and much more is covered in Grahams books and I urge you have a look at his website if alternate views of human history are of interest to you.

We are members of the Best western Rewards program which we find is one of best. We built up three free nights and about $250 dollars in cash that they had offered as extra incentives over last year. So, part of this trip was free. https://www.bestwestern.com/fr_FR/best-western-rewards.html?iata=00170260&ssob=PSPBM0104G&cid=PSPBM0104G:google:PBMS4%20|%20Rewards%20|%20Exact:best%20western%20rewards

See more here on trip advisor.

We use the Roadtrippers app to plan our overall trips, you can add as many stops as you want and search a certain area either side of the main route for hotels, rv parks etc. It works well to find interesting places, interesting routes and works well in conjunction with google maps for short trips or side trips.

Boulder park - boulders dropped by the Glaciers

<![CDATA[The John day fossil beds of eastern oregon]]>Tue, 08 Jul 2014 21:38:17 GMThttp://daveleephotography.com/travel-blog/the-john-day-fossil-beds-of-easter-oregon
This was the view after we turned off highway 26 before entering the Painted Hill Area - amazing!
PictureEntrance to the painted hills area.
The Painted Hills
We first heard of the Painted hills from a brochure we picked up in Portland, but we didn’t know much about it, except that the scenery looked amazing.  I am a photography enthusiast, and it looked like a great new place to shoot some interesting photos. We found it was much more than great scenery, if you have an interest in geology, paleontology or how our world developed this is an area you want to visit.

The painted hills is only one unit out of three units, of the 14,000 acre John Day National Monument.  
The adventure started on Highway 26 East from Portland to snowcapped Mt Hood dominating the Horizon.  We were late getting out of Portland and Mt Hood was so impressive we decided to stop at Government camp, a typical winter ski town with a couple of bars, small stores, hotels and cabins.

We found a nice Best Western motel built in ski lodge style with lots of wooden beams, and offseason rates which was perfect..The local market and liquor store combination was open and liquor was available even if it was sunday. So after a happy hour cocktail and dinner at a small local restaurant which looked like a 60’s era diner, We visited historic Timberline Lodge and shot some nice photos of the Ski area.

The next morning Highway 26 carried us to the  Journey through Time Scenic Byway with the amazing vistas of lava flows and Volcanos from millions of years ago. The painted hills unit was our next stop, and the scenery with the amazing colors of smooth fossilized volcanic ash hills was incredible. The roads are gravel that lead into the Painted hill overlook, but were in good condition and the short trip is worth the view. There are a number of short trails from the overlook parking area to explore. It was a hot day and we decided they could wait for another time.

We took highway 26 further east to Mitchell http://www.nps.gov/joda/index.htma pioneer town founded in 1863, which still has many of the original buildings from that era. Mitchell is just off the highway in a narrow canyon and some impressive rock formations. This is town that time forgot and is worth a stop for groceries or lodging and to soak up the feeling of the 1800’s.

Driving north on Highway 19, the next stop was the Thomas Condon Paleontology Center, a national park service research facility dedicated to the study of the John Day Fossil beds. The fossils at John Day are from the age of mammals which dates from 55 million years ago. This center is green building powered by wind turbines and solar.  Displays of fossils fill the center and you can view the laboratory through the picture windows to see current projects. Research has been ongoing since the 1860’s and new discoveries are being made today. The amazing array of events, climate change, and mass extinctions reveal clues to to our present and our future. This was a great learning experience and we only touched the surface of the fossil beds and other places to see in eastern Oregon. Visit and enjoy!!!.

Find out more about Mitchell Oregon http://mitchelloregon.us/about-mitchell/history/

The John Day Fossil Beds http://www.nps.gov/joda/index.htm

Scenic Byways. http://traveloregon.com/trip-ideas/scenic-byways/journey-through-time-scenic-byway/

Painted Hills Overlook another view
Paleontology Center Display
Fossil Omnivore - fangs to catch with and molars for grinding.
<![CDATA[Searching for the Palm tree capital of Canada]]>Tue, 24 Jun 2014 02:39:20 GMThttp://daveleephotography.com/travel-blog/searching-for-the-palm-tree-capital-of-canada
Palms at the Hotel In Victoria
The Palm Tree Capital of Canada?

We are cruising along beach drive on Vancouver Island in our search for the Palm tree capital of Canada. Beach drive follows the shoreline of the Sannich peninsula running from down town Victoria to the village of Sidney. On route is the community of Oak Bay which bills itself as the palm tree capital of Canada,  Cue the warm ocean breezes.  Oak Bay started a program to encourage planting Windmill palms to reinforce the Banana belt image of Vancouver Island.  The southern end of Vancouver island has parks, museums, shopping, pubs, and is more British than Britain, so if Palms trees are not your thing then you still won't be disappointed when you visit.

Windmill palms ( Trachycarpus fortunei) are Hardy Palms that originate from the rain forests on the lower slopes of the Himalaya Mountains and have adapted well to Southern Vancouver Island’s temperate climate. Interested purchasers at the annual plant sale, are advised to arrive early to avoid disappointment. They sell Windmill palms, Gary Oak seedlings and Monkey Puzzle trees.

On this sunny June day we are searching for Palm trees on Beach drive. The breeze is a little chilly, but the sky is deep blue, with puffy white clouds and it looks like an island paradise. Victoria boasts an average of 2,183 hours of sunshine yearly, and an eight month frost free season. Although winters are mild and rarely include snow, warmer clothing may be required, even on a June day when a brisk breeze blows off the ocean.

We don’t find windmill palms waving in the breeze on every corner, but we do spot a few, but no monkey puzzle trees.  Conservation groups, were against planting palm trees, and more concerned with saving native Gary oaks. Conservationists prefered protecting and restoring representative patches of the oak ecosystem  which existed before waves of settlement irreversibly altered Victoria’s natural environment from 1843 onward. The Garry Oak Ecosystems claim to contain more diversity than any other terrestrial ecosystem in British Columbia. Beautiful wildflowers, ferns, mosses, insects, birds and mammals, and many endangered species are found in these park-like environments.

The windmill palms we spotted added an exotic flavor to the landscape and were a welcome addition. There are plenty of Gary oak groves, and if  promoting Vancouver Island and the Victoria area as the Palm Tree Capital gets more people to visit, that's great. Visitors won't be disappointed.

Victoria has the reputation as being more British than Britain, with an assortment of pubs where you can grab a cold beer, or if you prefer, afternoon tea, at the stately Empress Hotel is a big attraction. The BC legislature buildings, and the Royal BC museum with the Imax theatre are both worth a few hours of exploration. Walking downtown Victoria is fun, there are dozens of small stories catering to tourists with a distinct Canadian, British feel.

Book a Victoria harbour tour or catch one of the hippo fleet , buses that also double as boats, a very unique experience.  Butchart Gardens has a beautiful display of flowers and the gardens are lighted at night.   

While spending an afternoon walking tour, check out the parks especially Beacon hill park.  The gardens, fountains, petting zoo, and wandering peacocks are perfect for an afternoon outing for the whole family.

Cruise beach drive and keep a lookout for deep sea ships heading out to sea from the Port of Vancouver. Explore the waterfront parks and beaches. On our drive we spotted an eagle eating a fish and great blue herons hunting the shallows off the beach. We finished off a perfect day with ice cold beer, and sandwich at a beach front pub in Sidney.

The Palm Tree Capital is a great destination, so come count the palm trees the next time you visit British Columbia.

Information from tourism BC


Getting there from Vancouver

BC Ferries


Harbour Air


Driveway Palms
Peacock at Beacon Hill Park
Victoria Harbour
Provincial Legislature Buildings
<![CDATA[Winter in the CHILLIWACK RIVER VALLEY]]>Thu, 05 Dec 2013 20:59:25 GMThttp://daveleephotography.com/travel-blog/winter-in-the-chilliwack-river-valleyThe Chilliwack river valley is a popular place for camping, fishing, ATV's and hiking in summer.
Winter comes to the Chilliwack valley sooner than other parts of the Fraser Valley, the valley is surrounded by mountains and once December arrives is in the shadow of the mountains. We took the 40 km drive on the paved road to see what the valley looked like on a -4 degree C December day.  

You will see some amazing views of the peaks and forest along the road, and even when the Chilliwack Lake campground is closed, you can walk the short trail to the lake if the snow is not too deep.

We will add some more photos to the post after our next trip.

Below is the google map for the area.
<![CDATA[eaglefest - The Worlds largest gathering of bald eagles - ]]>Tue, 19 Nov 2013 20:26:03 GMThttp://daveleephotography.com/travel-blog/eaglefest-worlds-largest-gathering-of-bald-eaglesThe worlds largest gathering of Bald Eagles happens in the Fraser valley at the Chehalis Flats where the Chehalis River joins the Harrison River. The eagle count for 2012 was about 10,000 birds. 
 For more information here is the link http://fraservalleybaldeaglefestival.ca/festival/

 The eagles migrate from northern areas when it starts to freeze, the spawned out salmon they feed on are frozen into the ice, and they can't access their main food source. Migration takes a lot of energy and they need to rest and feed when they arrive. They migrate by using thermals to gain altitude and then soar using the winds. Flapping uses so much energy that they would never survive if they had to flap for long distances.

The large gravel beds, formed over 100's of thousands of years at the mouth of the Chehalis River are ideal for spawning salmon, and feeding eagles. The gravel bars are only accessible by boat or hiking, and there is little industrialization or significant agriculture that can disturb the environment. This is also an ideal area for other migrating waterfowl, mallards, swans, snow geese, and Canada geese use the flats.

Taking photos can be a challenge and expensive telephoto lenses are needed to get good close up shots, unless you are in the right place at the right time. Trying to approach the eagles is impossible, because they can see anything on the flats, and they will fly if you get close. Walking the flats can also disturb spawning salmon, and crossing small tributaries can disturb the salmon eggs that have been spawned. The Chehalis flats is slated to become an officially no access area for the time of the year when eagles and salmon are present. It only makes common sense to protect this pristine habitat, so please respect this area and stay off the flats.

There are many eagle nests in the Fraser valley and eagles will be returning to claim  last years nests. in preparation for raising young in March. David Hancock who is an eagle researcher does a talk each year for eaglefest and it is worth attending if you are in the area, to find out the latest research on these wonderful birds.

 See the  link for David Hancocks organization to view eagle cams at nests. http://www.hancockwildlife.org/forum/viewtopic.php?showtopic=114161
<![CDATA[NoRthwest Trek - Washington state road trip]]>Wed, 13 Nov 2013 21:05:50 GMThttp://daveleephotography.com/travel-blog/northwest-trek-washington-state-road-tripPicture

Here is the  map for the layout of Northwest Trek

Northwest Trek  Roadtrip

Heading south Down I-5 in a massive traffic jam stretching from North Seattle to Olympia was not what I had in mind when we decided on a road trip to take a couple of days break from home in Chilliwack, BC. It was Friday afternoon of the Memorial day weekend and it appears everybody got off early, who knew rush hour started at 2:00 pm.

We decided to take a road trip, from our home in Chilliwack, with Northwest Trek in Washington State as the main destination.  We had visited this wildlife park some years ago, and with my new enthusiasm for photography, it was a chance to see what interesting images we could capture. We planned a three day trip so we could visit some favorite restaurants and stores in Washington.

We spent a relaxing night in the Best Western at Tumwater, Washington, much appreciated after the massive traffic jam. They had great rates and very clean rooms with a free breakfast to get the day off to a great start. 

It was overcast as we enjoyed a peaceful drive on the back roads through small towns with historic buildings and arrived at the park for a leisurely day.

Northwest Trek is a 725 acre wildlife  park, their mission statement is they are “ dedicated to conservation, education, and recreation by displaying, interpreting, and researching native northwest wildlife and their habitats” Northwest Trek is located near Eatonville, in Washington state, about 30 miles east of I-5 from Olympia. To get exact directions and more information visit their website at www.nwtrek.org/‎.

The park can be a full day experience with viewing the animals and participating in other activities. It is great for kids, with hands on displays, and has a Zip line/challenge that has a zip line through the trees. It is accessible for all skill and experience levels for ages 6 and up.

There are paved trails from which you can view animals such as bears, cougars, and wolves, from overlooks that provide vantage points so you can watch the interactions between animals. The keepers show off the smaller animals and birds; talk about their habitats and habits at trailside encounters.

The free roaming area covers 435 acres and a naturalist guided tram tour gets you close up and personal with Moose, Bison, Elk, Mountain Sheep, Big Horn sheep, and deer.   When you enter the park you get a reserved time for the tram tour. Then you have time for walking the trails, checking out the restaurant, gift shop and other displays.

There many special events held throughout the year for groups such as educators and photographers. There are special times of the year to watch seasonal activities of the animals. They have family camps which have special activities that families would enjoy in addition to viewing the animals. Check the Northwest Trek website for special event schedules.

 At www.nwtrek.org/‎.

This is fun trip for all ages, with easy trails, rental strollers, and facilities for people with disabilities.

Enjoy our attached slide show of the images we shot. I am looking forward to  taking one of the special trips for photographers in the new year to shoot some more images at this special park.

<![CDATA[Othello Tunnels Provincial Park - The most expensive piece of rail line construction in the World.]]>Sun, 13 Oct 2013 03:33:50 GMThttp://daveleephotography.com/travel-blog/othello-tunnels-provincial-park-the-most-expensive-piece-of-rail-line-construction-in-the-worldPicture
The tunnels cut through solid granite, and are part of the trail system - remember to bring a flashlight - It is pitch black and there is a little water seepage form above.
Othello Tunnels Provincial Park

This park contains a 135 hectare land base. It is a popular tourist attraction for the town of Hope and provides viewing, walking, fishing, and picnicking opportunities. The hiking trail links to the historic Hope-Nicola Cattle Trail. The engineer Andrew McCullough was an avid reader of Shakespearean literature, and used characters such as Lear, Jessica, Portia, Iago, Romeo & Juliet to name stations of the Coquihalla section of the line.

In the early 1900’s, the Canadian Pacific Railway decided to link the Kootenay region with the BC coast by rail. Andrew McCulloch was hired as the chief engineer in May 1910. He had been involved in many CPR projects, including the Spiral Tunnels near Revelstoke.

McCulloch took on the challenging task of building the railway over three major mountain ranges. The Coquihalla subdivision included 38 miles from the Coquihalla Summit to the junction with the CPR mainline across the Fraser River from Hope. This section boasts the most expensive mile of railway track in the world: $300,000 in 1914! The construction was done almost exclusively by hand with the assistance of a few horse drawn scrapers and some black powder. His assistant engineers named the railway “McCulloch’s Wonder”.

The greatest challenge of this route was the Coquihalla gorge, just east of Hope, where the river had cut a 300-foot-deep channel in solid granite. Other engineers had suggested a mile-long tunnel by-passing the gorge, but McCulloch chose to build directly through it. Hanging in the gorge in a wicker basket, McCulloch surveyed the canyon for a straight line of tunnels that could be dug simultaneously. Cliff ladders, suspension bridges and ropes allowed workers to complete what is, to this day, regarded as a spectacular engineering feat.

Many of the passengers on the Coquihalla line came expressly to see and photograph the station boards and to send postcards from the stations’ post offices as a souvenir. This added an ironic touch of gentility to this adventurous journey.

The Kettle Valley Railway was officially opened on July 31, 1916. The line operated both freight and passenger service between Vancouver and Nelson, but the operation was plagued with snow and rock slides. In a two year period in the 1930’s the line operated for only a few weeks.

On November 23, 1959, a washout was reported just north of the tunnels. The 400-foot washout was too large to be filled in one day, and numerous other washouts added to the troubles of the maintenance crews. The line was closed and never reopened; it was officially abandoned in July of 1961. The tunnels and surrounding area became a provincial recreation area in May of 1986.

Much of the modern four lane Coquihalla Highway is built upon the original rail bed of the Kettle Valley Railway. Travelling at modern highway speeds it is difficult to imagine the formidable task of constructing a rail route through this rugged section of BC.

As you drive along the highway, you may notice some small signs in the shape of an old steam locomotive, with Shakespearean names. These signs commemorate the approximate locations of the Kettle Valley Railway stations along the highway.

Coquihalla Gorge - with trees clinging to the side , above the river.
One of the Tunnels cutting through the gorge - Heather Lee standing below the hanging rocks of the cliff face.
Fall on the trails of the Othello Provincial Park- as the last leaves are falling
<![CDATA[Chilliwack - The Great Outdoors]]>Wed, 02 Oct 2013 23:05:23 GMThttp://daveleephotography.com/travel-blog/chilliwack-the-great-outdoorsPicture
View of Cultus lake and Chilliwack Valley from Mt Thom
Submitted to Our Canada Magazine -  Accepted – published Sept 2013 issue

Destination, Chilliwack, British Columbia 

The short trail climbs up the hill between the alder trees at a moderate incline rising about 100 meters. You will find it a moderate climb, but you might need to stop to catch your breath if you haven’t been doing much walking lately.  The amazing view from Mt Thom in Chilliwack BC is worth the effort. You will be greeted by the green corn and hay fields stretching between the mountains that enclose the valley.

I live in Chilliwack, I hike the trails, fish the rivers, sail the lakes, and have enjoyed many exciting adventures since moving here. The Tourism Chilliwack web site is www.thegreatoutside.com which is what you will find in Chilliwack.

Chilliwack is a city with a population of 80,000 in the Fraser valley. This a major dairy and agricultural area in British Columbia, located 100 kilometers east of Vancouver. The area was populated by as many as 40,000 Stolo Indians, 10,000 years ago.  Chilliwack is  still home today to the descendents  of these original inhabitants.

 In 1857 gold was discovered in BC and by 1858 up to 30,000 miners had arrived and travelled to the goldfields by way of steamships , up the Fraser River to Chilliwack. By the 1860’s small farms had been established in the Valley to supply the gold seekers with produce and the township of Chilliwack was incorporated in 1873.

There are dozens of trails in the Chilliwack Area varying from 12km steep mountain hikes to the flat rotary trail along the Chilliwack River.  The Rotary trail is great for viewing the fall run of spawning salmon. You will find trail access is by two wheel drive roads to most trail heads. The Rotary trail which is right in the town of Chilliwack is 15 km, and has multiple access points so you can walk 1 km or 5 km or bike the whole trail. You can pick up trail maps at the Tourism Chilliwack office or on the website.

The trails provide you with opportunities to view, Bald eagles, song birds, ducks, and wood peckers amongst other wildlife.  The Blue Heron Nature preserve trails allow for viewing a nesting site for the great blue Heron. The Herons start nesting in March and can be spotted in the fields, and along the creeks and ponds, hunting for food for the growing chicks.

The world’s largest gathering of bald eagles occurs in the Fraser Valley, you will see eagles perching in trees, along the farm roads in the area.  The eagle fest in Mid-November hosts lectures and events , and you can view  the  1000’s of eagles by taking a boat tour of the Harrison River from Kilby Heritage farm

The eagles are attracted by the five species of Salmon that spawn in the Fraser River and its tributaries.  If you are looking for the thrill of a lifetime book a fishing charter for Sturgeon. Sturgeon reach up to 1000 lbs and 12 feet in length. Hooking one of these giants or just enjoying a day on the secluded areas of the Fraser River is a great adventure you will remember for the rest of your life.

Come check out ”The Great Outside” in Chilliwack

Resources for Chilliwack:

Chilliwack Tourism http://www.tourismchilliwack.com/

Sport Fishing BC – Fraser River Charters -  http://www.bcsportfishinggroup.com/

Hancock Wildlife Foundation – All about Eagles  http://www.hancockwildlife.org/

<![CDATA[Sailing Blogs - recreated from our marine site.]]>Sat, 28 Sep 2013 22:22:02 GMThttp://daveleephotography.com/travel-blog/sailing-blogs-recreated-from-our-marine-sitePicture
A few years ago we purchased a Mcgregor 26x and after a year we sold the boat it was hard to resist making a profit on the boat and sailing for a year for free. These are the posts. 

Nautilus Blog
Nov 27 2009 - Brrrrrrh!
The day dawned with the sunshowing it's face. BC has had a record rainfall for November so this was  a day to take advantage of and get some boat time in. 

I arrived at the Marina at 11 AM and figured on some sailing but again there was very little wind, considering the tempeture was about 6C,that was most likley not a bad thing. So I motored up the lake at 2500 rpm and about 6 knots. The plan was to go a beach area I had not explored about 16 k up the lake. At about 2:00 and still not quite where I planned,the clouds had started to roll in at the south end of the lake where the Marina is, the tempeture was dropping as the sun was being blocked out and it felt like time to turn for home. I decided enought with the 6 knots, lifted the rudders and kicked the Tohatsu up to wide open to drain the ballast and headed for home. It is great to have a Mac or what. Now making 14 knots, it was getting a little chilly to say the least, but the GPS said I had only an hour to endure at this speed. Time to grit your teeth and go for it!!!!!!.
The wind had also picked up and a little spray was coming over the boat. Boy the full enclosure or at least the wide dodger looks like a good option at about that time. Oh well summer will come back and then this would be agreat way to cool off after a long day in the hot sun, keep thinking positive is my moto!
I arrived back in the Marina and got Mac all secured with a number of extra lines and bumpers, prepared for a blow, just in case I don't get out for while. It really is getting a bit cool for this boating thing at his time of year. The old body was feeling a bit numb and stiff by the time this day was out. I plan to use the boat as much as possible and a cold day on the boat still beats hanging out at home!!

Nov 27 2009 - Coool day

November 11/09 - Scout camp bay

This was another overcast November day with the tempeture hovering around 10 C, but not a breath of wind. I started out from the Marina at 11:00 pulled out some lunch from home and motored up the lake. A good day for motoring and some quiet time on the boat. There is a beach about 5 miles up on the west side I have dubbed Scout Camp Bay. The boy scouts have a cabin in the bay they use.

 I always have the fly rod on the boat and anchored and tried a few casts in off the creek that runs into the bay. The only sign of  fish were some salmon spawning on the beach in front of the creek. The salmon are in pretty bad shape after the trip up the Fraser and Harrison River. It is surprising that salmon do continue up the 40 miles of Harrison Lake to the Lillooet River to Spawn.
I also have been reading that there are crayfish in lakes and rivers in BC and they can be caught in prawn traps, so I also gave that a try, but with no luck.

 I decided to try picking up some wind to sail back to the Marina, but it was a lost cause. There was not enought wind to fill the sails and the 1 knot I was making according to the GPS was not cutting it, so it was back to motoring. The sun was dropping behind the snow covered mountains and the tempeture was dropping. A full cockpit enclosure would be nice if I plan to continue to use the boat over the winter. For now I guess picking some days when the sun is showing itself will have to do.
It  was a great day, finished off with a glass of wine tied up at the Marina!!!! 

Salmon Spawning Harrison Lake

MacGregor26x 1998 - New to us.

November 06 2009
This is the first post  to log our sailing trips with our new to us 1998 Macgregor 26 x swingkeel sailboat.
The boat was acquired in Sept of this 2009, after a few months of looking and learning about the boats. The process was a bit frustrating as MacGregors are very popular and every time we found one that looked good it was gone before we even got to see it. We finally found one that was the right price and in not bad condition, and as a bonus the owner had redone the trailer which is in perfect condition after all his work.  The engine is the original 50 hp Tohatsu and seems to run okay and will do for now. The idea was to get the boat earlier in the year and use it over the summer, but that didn't work out. 
We have now had a chance to get the boat out a fair number of times in conditions from flat calm to 20 knot plus winds.  I have had boats of various kinds since I was about 6 years old so I am very familiar with evrything associated with the water. The whole sailing thing is new since I have never had a sailboat, and we are learning as we go. It has been interesting and I think we now have a fairly good handle on what we are doing. 
So now we are starting a blog which will be an online log to track our adventures with the new boat which we see many of the contributors at http://www.macgregorsailors.com/ have done with some very professional looking results so here we go and we look forward to sharing our adventures.

<![CDATA[Rv Rental]]>Sat, 28 Sep 2013 22:03:08 GMThttp://daveleephotography.com/travel-blog/rv-rentalPicture
Canmore- Alberta - Canadream Rental
We rented from Canadream in Calgary,  stayed at our daughters farm in Camrose Alberta, and then travelled Alberta, We  ended up in Canmore, and stayed for two days.  This scenic town, in the foothills of the rockies, surrounded by the mountains, with crystal clear mountain air is truly the most beautiful spot.

The Rv was a perfect place to stay while we were at our daughters farm as she raises Mastiffs and with the all the dogs and people it can get a bit crowded.
Canadream provides a total package, just bring your personal items and you're set for a great holiday.

Renting from Canadream was a great experience from the streamlined sign in and pickup until we delivered the unit back, and it was one of their "Hot Deals" , so the price was really affordable.

We were bit  by the Rv bug after this and are now looking  to buy and go full time . Canadream has some great deals on used rental units. 
More to come on this when we purchase.

Parked on the farm in Camrose, Alberta