Storm Clouds Over South Surrey

Storm clouds from an incoming thunderstorm darken the sky over farmland in South Surrey, British Columbia, Canada.

dark thunderstorm clouds over south surrey farmland nicomekl river

Thunderstorm Clouds Darken the Sky Over South Surrey Farmland (Purchase)

A few weeks ago I had a few hours to spend at Elgin Heritage Park in Surrey. I was mostly interested in photographing birds, and was not expecting a storm. Previously I’ve found a lot of birds on the marsh areas as well as along the shoreline of the Nicomekl River. At lot of the marsh plants seemed to be flatted by previous high water, so there aren’t as many old stems for the birds to perch in at the moment, but that will change as the foliage grows this spring. After looking for Red-winged Blackbirds and other birds along the shore, the darkening sky to the north and west was of some concern. I could see rain falling not too far across the river at times, so I was wary as to when I might have to head back to the car due to heavy precipitation or lightning. I made the first photograph here from the bank of the Nicomekl and from then on the sky received more of my attention than the birds. Although, I did photograph a Greater Yellowlegs which seemed to occasionally get bogged down in the mud while foraging. The Yellowlegs seemed pretty unconcerned about the potential for rain.

storm clouds over nicomekl river south surrey farmland

Storm Clouds and Rainfall over South Surrey Farmland (Purchase)

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The wide panorama below shows the amount of precipitation that was falling from these clouds at times. At one point the rain was just across the river, and I was pretty sure I could hear it. Only a few drops on the side of Elgin Heritage Park though, which I did not mind. My gear is weather sealed but I generally don’t want to test that!

bands of rain fall from storm clouds south surrey elgin

Wide Panorama of the Bands of rain falling from the storm clouds (Purchase)

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In my most recent post I wrote about not really wanting to photograph Herons anymore and then not only photographed a number of Herons, I posted 4 to that blog post alone. I should point out that while there is a Great Blue Heron in the photo below, it is not a “Heron photo”. It is a stormy cloud photograph that merely happens to have a Heron in it, in my defense. 🙂 There seemed to be some territorial jostling going on with the Herons at the river on that day – they were chasing each other off quite often. Lots of squawking and honking sounds (these are not songbirds) with some physical intimidation can help when attempting to convince a rival to move down the river, apparently.

storm clouds and the nicomekl river with heron

Nicomekl River, Storm Clouds and a Heron (Purchase)

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For more photographs from the City of Surrey visit my Surrey gallery.

Bird Photography at Tsawwassen’s Beach Grove Lagoon

An adult Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) flies overhead at Tsawwassen’s Centennial Beach in Delta, British Columbia, Canada.

bald eagle in flight at boundary bay in delta

Bad Eagle in Flight at Centennial Beach on Boundary Bay (Purchase)

In yet another example of parks I’ve been to, but not fully explored – I ventured out into Boundary Bay Regional Park north of Centennial Beach in mid February. While I was watching some ducks forage along the edge of the tidal zone a woman who was walking by asked a question about my photography (a long lens and a tripod attracts conversation). She pointed out there was a heron just down the way and I said the words that would set the tone for the rest of the evening (and this blog post). I stated that I was mostly done photographing herons at this point as I have too many heron photos. I used Bald Eagles as another example of birds I don’t seek out intentionally unless there is something new and/or interesting about the potential photograph (there are tons of Bald Eagles around Boundary Bay). So naturally a few seconds later I made the photograph above as this adult Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) flew just overhead. I don’t think I have many Eagles in flight photos, so this was something new and also worked out quite well. I should have known what was coming next.

Shortly after the Eagle incident I found this curious American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) hopping along the driftwood logs on the beach. I know Crows aren’t exactly a big target of birders, with some exceptions, but they are often doing interesting things. Previously recognized as a separate species, the Northwestern Crow (Corvus caurinus) was recently renamed the American Crow. As it turned out, via some genetic studies, Northwestern Crows were usually found to be hybrids or actually C. brachyrhynchos anyway. I wish they could have renamed it the North American Crow. This individual did eventually spy a tasty morsel in the sand and flew off to enjoy it with a bit more privacy.

american crow perched on driftwood at boundary bay

American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos) Perched on Driftwood at Boundary Bay (Purchase)

Walking down the trail from Centennial Beach I approached the Beach Grove Lagoon and Spit area of Boundary Bay Regional Park and, as one might have predicted, found some Great Blue Herons (Ardea herodias) in interesting light. As I’ve often seen them do at Blackie Spit in Crescent Beach, there were a number of Herons hanging out in a grassy field near the shore. Some were sleeping and having a nap but others were slightly more active. The warmer sunlight of the evening with the backlighting on the bird attracted me to this particular composition. I photographed this individual Heron as the feathers on its head and neck were nicely lit by the sunlight versus others who were resting in the shade. I guess one attractive thing about photographing these birds is they often tend to sit still and don’t move around a lot unless they are actively hunting. Probably why I have more photos of Herons than Swallows, for example. Despite declaring them a subject I’m less interested, I published 7 Heron photos from this evening, bringing the total in my Image Library to 42. Maybe I should just change my logo to a heron?

great blue heron at beach grove lagoon tsawwassen

Great Blue Heron Resting in a Grassy Field in Tsawwassen (Purchase)

Also at the Beach Grove Lagoon and Spit was this Heron sitting on a piece of driftwood. It seemed to mostly be enjoying nap time like the Herons in the field. Occasionally it would keep a close eye on a Bald Eagle or other larger bird flying nearby. It may have been resting up for the hunt I saw it begin shortly thereafter.

great blue heron perched on driftwood at boundary bay regional park

Great Blue Heron Perched on Driftwood at Beach Grove Lagoon and Spit (Purchase)

Much of Boundary Bay Regional Park is often a great place to spot a variety of shorebirds depending on the time of year. On this day in mid February there were a number of Greater Yellowlegs (Tringa melanoleuca) foraging along the shore. This one was focusing on this one area in the water, perhaps having spied something on its first pass and was hoping to snack on it this time around. When photographing this Yellowlegs I talked to a young man (~14) who was also trying to photograph the shorebirds. When I saw the Yellowlegs I got off the trail and sat down and waited for them to walk past. His tactic was to walk quickly back and forth on the top of the dike, looming in the sky (from the bird’s perspective) which often dictated their direction of movement. I mentioned this to him and that if he stood in one spot, the birds would wander past and be more relaxed while doing so. He agreed, but lamented that he just didn’t have the patience to do that. I probably wouldn’t have had it at 14 either, honestly, and I’ve see grown adults racing up and down the dike at boundary bay chasing birds too. Also of note for this 14 year old was the lens he was using. I’m pretty sure it was a Canon 800mm which retails for around $22,000 here in Canada. Must be nice (but heavy)! My car was cheaper than that when new in 2004!

greater yellowlegs Tringa melanoleuca at boundary bay

Greater Yellowlegs (Tringa melanoleuca) at Beach Grove Lagoon and Spit (Purchase)

After I chatted about wildlife photography and Yellowlegs the Heron I photographed sitting on the driftwood earlier had flown a short distance to the edge of the incoming tidal water from Boundary Bay. I watched it catch several small fish before it flew to the other side of the dike to join those napping in the grass.

great blue heron resting at boundary bay regional park

Great Blue Heron Hunting at Beach Grove Lagoon (Wildlife Area) (Purchase)

On my walk back to the car as the light became dim there were several Herons in various trees either individually or in groups. This particular Heron was perched on top of a dead Birch tree trunk that had clearly rotted to the point of breaking off at some point. There was a Flicker poking around in one of the lower parts of the old trunk, an intrusion the Heron didn’t seem to mind. Granted this was a bit less noisy than when Flickers engage in their favourite spring pastime and bang away on metal chimneys in the early morning.

great blue heron resting at boundary bay regional park

Great Blue Heron Perched in the Evening at Boundary Bay (Purchase)

For more photographs of the Tsawwassen and Boundary Bay area visit my Delta Gallery in the Image Library. I don’t have a dedicated Heron gallery. Yet.

A Snowy Walk at Derby Reach Regional Park

Fresh snow creates an outline on each branch of this thick deciduous forest at Derby Reach Regional Park in Langley, British Columbia, Canada.

snow on the trees at derby reach regional park near the fraser river

Snow Outlines the Branches in a Deciduous Forest (Purchase)

In early January we had a light snowfall overnight here which actually stuck around through the next day. So often even a large dump of snow is a bit slushy the next day, or everything turns to rain, and there aren’t many photography opportunities in those conditions. I can often see snow on the mountains without such conditions down here closer to sea level, but snow covering the trees like in these first two photographs is certainly more elusive. As this was something I’ve been waiting for I actually made a photo from the backyard of a tree across the street that was lit by a street light in case everything was gone by morning! Luckily, that didn’t happen.

As the conditions looked promising I headed out to Williams Park which is a small local park I like to visit, often just for a walk. There is a creek running through the length of it and the sound of water is always a good accompaniment to a 2-3km stroll. It can also be nice with snow around, but the scenes there weren’t speaking to me that day so I headed north to Derby Reach Regional Park. Forest scenes can be a tough subject to find a composition with – so many branches and plants heading in different directions can create quite a mess of sorts. With some snow on the branches, however, it is a bit like a highlighter has been drawn on all the branches and they stand out in a more individual fashion. I photographed the scene above, one I’ve seen a dozen times without really noticing any distinctiveness to the flow of the branches, but the snow changed that. It was pointed out to me that this first photograph would make a good jigsaw puzzle. For those who enjoy a lot of frustration, I suspect.

snow on the trees at derby reach regional park near the fraser river

Fresh snow on branches of a tree at Derby Reach Regional Park (Purchase)

Further down the trail this individual tree grabbed my attention again due to the fringe of snow on each branch that makes the tree (a Red Alder in this case, I think)

snow on the trees at derby reach regional park near the fraser river

Tugboat Towing Barge of Sawdust Down the Fraser River (Purchase)

When I visit Derby Reach Regional Park I tend to frequent an area called Muench Bar which gives a nice view of the Fraser River and on a day of good weather – the Golden Ears Mountains. I tend to photograph these peaks too often frequently, as previous posts in this blog will attest. When I’m along a big river like the Fraser, there is usually some boating activity and I’ll often photograph them as they go past my location. Here I had both subjects available, so I photographed this Ledcor Tugboat towing a barge full of sawdust down the river – with the Golden Ears (Mount Blanshard) in the background. The clouds were frequently obscuring then dissipating from the mountain peaks but I was usually able to wait until they became visible.

snow on golden ears blanshard and ice in the fraser river

The Golden Ears and the Fraser River (with ice!) on A Winter Day (Purchase)

We don’t often have a cold snap long enough to form ice on the Fraser, but this happened a few times this winter. At one point parts of it were frozen over, which isn’t that common. During this cold spell there were again chunks of ice flowing in the river, and I included the pilings in the foreground mostly due to the nest boxes at the top. These nesting boxes are for the Purple Martin (Progne subis) I believe – though they might be used by other species as well.

snowy golden ears mountains at derby reach

Fresh Snow on the Golden Ears and Derby Reach Regional Park in Langley (Purchase)

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As I was heading back to my car from Muench Bar after sunset there were some more interesting blues in the sky and I again made a panorama from my favourite view of Mount Blanshard. I have previously photographed Mount Blanshard from this same spot in the spring. I should try to get a photo like this in every season to complete the series.

For more photographs from this snowy day visit my Langley Township/Langley City Gallery.

Views from Jericho Pier and Locarno Beach

A sailboat sails on English Bay past the West End neighbourhood of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

sailboat english bay west end vancouver

Sailboat on English Bay near the West End of Vancouver (Purchase)

While it was technically the first full day of fall, an evening I spent last September taking in the views from Jericho Pier and Locarno Beach felt like a late summer evening. There were plenty of people enjoying both the beach and the waters of English Bay. I don’t think anyone was swimming but I saw everything from yachts to sailboats down to paddleboards and kayaks all over the water. A lot of my photos from this evening either have sailboats in them or I had to wait a while until they passed. The photograph above was made of the West End and Downtown Vancouver after sunset from Jericho Pier. The two taller towers are the Paradox Hotel (left) which recently has mercifully been renamed from a previously embarrassing moniker, and the tower in the middle is a hotel called Living Shangri-La.

freighters on english bay sunset clouds

A cloud lit by sunset over English Bay (Purchase)

I don’t often find that a sunset is a subject of much interest in itself. The light at that time can be great, but I tend to be facing somewhere other than west when one is occurring. These freighters were among the many ubiquitously anchored in English bay waiting to load or offload. As seen in the photograph below, I was keeping an eye on the mountains the northwest as a good background. When this one strip of cloud lit up from the sunset I walked a bit to line it up with the two freighters. I made this photograph, like many others on that evening, from Jericho Pier. I’d not visited this pier before, but it seemed like an area that would have good views in many directions, and so after walking around Locarno and Jericho beach areas I settled on it as a spot for the later evening photographs. Unfortunately, like Cultus Lake and a few other locations I visited this fall, the storms this past fall and winter were not kind to Jerico Pier. A strong windstorm during a King tide destroyed some of the pier and it has been closed. Much like the damage to White Rock Pier when a dock and sailboats were bashed against it, Jericho wasn’t able to remain intact after high tides and winds battered it with stray logs/trees from English Bay. The pier remains closed, and I’m not sure if there are plans to repair it.

learning to sail on english bay

Students from the Jericho Sailing Centre sail on English Bay (Purchase)

As I mentioned earlier there were a lot of sailboats in English Bay on this evening. This group appeared to be a sailing class from the Jericho Sailing Centre nearby. With the Point Atkinson Lighthouse (in West Vancouver’s Lighthouse Park) and the Tetrahedron Range (Panther peak and Tetrahedron peak on the Sunshine Coast) in the background I made a photo quickly before they came into the frame. I then thought I should try one including them and I like both results.

west end of vancouver panorama english bay evening

West End and Downtown Vancouver skyline in the early evening (Purchase)

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I do enjoy making photographs of downtown Vancouver and that subject is often one that calls (to me) for a panorama. This photograph shows the buildings of the West End and Downtown areas of the City of Vancouver as viewed from Jericho Pier. On the left you can just spot the Inukshuk at English Bay Beach with Kits Point on the right. I don’t find this skyline nearly as interesting as the view of downtown from Stanley Park but with tall new buildings going up all the time the character is likely to change.

sunset downtown west end vancouver

Sunset at English Bay (Purchase)

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This is an example of a typical sunset photograph of mine – facing east! The light from sunset made a great, warm, glow on the buildings of Vancouver. You can just see the “Golden Ears” of Mount Blanshard and Blanshard Needle peeking out above Eagle Mountain in the background.

For more photographs from this evening and the City of Vancouver visit the Vancouver Gallery in my Image Library.

Salt Spring Island Miscellaneous

There was great leaf foliage colour this past fall and I was able to take advantage of a lull in the Covid situation to visit some friends on Salt Spring Island. Before my trip I looked through the photographs I had already made on Salt Spring and tried to think of the kind of photographs that represented the area. That question is probably better answered by someone who lives there but from my perspective, farms, ocean scenes, boats, beaches, and nature in areas like the provincial parks came to mind. At least from within the range of photographs I usually make – I’m sure there are interesting street scenes and photos with people in them to be made around the market but that isn’t usually my thing. My fall trip was like most of my Salt Spring trips – I tend to bring the rain with me. I did visit two provincial parks while there, and even spent about 20 minutes at Ruckle Provincial Park which is the only visit I’ve made there without rain falling. I hope to visit that park again on my next visit.

Burgoyne Bay Provincial Park

Burgoyne Bay Provincial Park is an area I visit on every trip to Salt Spring Island. It is easy to access and it is a favourite of mine as it has a view of Mount Maxwell as well. I’ve already shared one photograph I made of Mount Maxwell in my Top 10 Photographs of 2021 (#3) post late last year and have included it again below.

I’ve developed an affinity for photographing old barns and buildings and these two old farm structures are ones I enjoy at Burgoyne. This time I was able to improve on older photographs as the fall leaves on the Bigleaf Maples (Acer macrophyllum) in the area were nearly at peak colour. This barrel-roof shed in the photo below was built by Richard Maxwell between 1900 and 1910 on his farm near Burgoyne Bay. The Maxwell Farm, later becoming the Larsen Farm, is now part of Burgoyne Bay Provincial Park. The shed was built for storage of large farm equipment and has two access doors on the Burgoyne Bay Road side of the building.

historic farm building at burgoyne bay on salt spring island

Barrel-Roof Shed built my Richard Maxwell between 1900 and 1910 at Burgoyne Bay (Purchase)

The Root Cellar is also right next to Burgoyne Bay Road and was built by Maxwell in 1901. The Root Cellar was used for storage of crops such as such as apples, carrots, turnips, potatoes, and squash. I always stop to take a look, and much prefer this photograph with the nice fall leaves versus an older one with no leaves on the trees. Maybe some day I’ll get a photograph of this building in the snow.

historic root cellar at burgoyne bay on salt spring island

Root Cellar (built 1901) at Burgoyne Bay on Salt Spring Island (Purchase)

I photographed this houseboat anchored in Burgoyne Bay while the rain poured down. There were not many boats anchored in the bay when I visited in October, likely owing to the season. Living there you would wake up to beautiful views. Being the fall season I was mostly drawn to the backdrop of Bigleaf Maple trees and the houseboat made a good main subject in front of them.

historic root cellar at burgoyne bay on salt spring island

Houseboat in the rain at Burgoyne Bay on Salt Spring Island (Purchase)

One of the many reasons to enjoy Burgoyne Bay are are views of Mount Maxwell (Hwmet’atsum). The clouds cleared around the mountain when I was walking a trail to the bay, and were rather dynamic which required some patience. Of the many exposures I made of various cloud positions I like this one the best as the character of the peak shows through with a border of clouds around it.

clouds around mount maxwell on salt spring island

Mount Maxwell in the Clouds (Purchase)

Fernwood Dock

When visiting Salt Spring Island I often drive North Beach Road and Walkers Hook Road along the northeast side of the island. It is a nice drive with many ocean views of the Houston Passage and Wallace Island as well as Galiano Island in the Trincomali Channel. At Fernwood Point there is the 122m (400 ft) long Fernwood Dock which extends 400 feet from the shore. The rocky beach on either side of the dock is a great spot to see anenomes and other intertidal species in the tide pools.

fernwood dock on salt spring island

Fernwood Dock on Salt Spring Island (Purchase)

Cranberry Valley

Cranberry Valley is an area of Salt Spring Island with a lot of small farms and acreages. I photographed these sheep taking shelter from some heavy rain with a nice backdrop of Bigleaf Maples behind them.

sheep on a small farm at cranberry valley on salt spring island

Cranberry Valley Sheep on Salt Spring Island (Purchase)

You can view more photographs of the island in my Salt Spring Island Gallery.

Maple Bay Day Use Area at Cultus Lake

Black Cottonwood (Populus trichocarpa) trees provide some bright autumn leaf color at Maple Bay Day Use Area in Cultus Lake Provincial Park in Chilliwack, British Columbia, Canada.

beautiful fall foliage at cultus lake

Fall Foliage at Cultus Lake’s Maple Bay (Purchase)

Cultus Lake Provincial Park is an area I enjoy visiting in spring and fall. I tend to avoid the area in the summer as it is one of the more popular Fraser Valley provincial parks and can be very crowded. I was at Cultus in late October of 2021 which was the perfect time to visit for a few reasons. First, there was some great fall foliage from the Black Cottonwood (Populus trichocarpa) trees around the lake. Second, this was just about 16 days before a massive atmospheric river dumped roughly 200-300mm of rain in about 36 hours. There were some dramatic outcomes of this storm including large scale destruction of parts of the Trans Canada Highway in the Fraser Canyon (1), the Coquihalla Highway (5), Highway 8, Highway 7 near Hope, and the flooding of Sumas Prairie farms and farmland. Less publicized damage from this and the atmospheric rivers we had in the following weeks were impacts on parks such as Cultus Lake and Coquihalla Canyon (Othello Tunnels) Provincial Parks. There is so much damage around the Othello Tunnels I have to wonder if it will ever reopen.

The Cultus Lake area will probably look a little different when I am able to visit again this winter or spring. Maple Bay specifically had a lot of damage. When I drove on the eastern side of the lake heading towards the Lindell Beach area on the southern end, I noticed the very bright fall leaves on the Cottonwoods at Maple Bay Beach. So I parked on the other side of the campground and walked through to the Maple Bay beach. On the way I followed the creek bed for Watt Creek from the campground to the beach. This was a wide creek bed that was maybe about 2.4 meters (8 feet) deep in some spots, the edges lined with small rocks a bit larger than gravel. At this point in late October there was almost no water flowing in the creek. The photograph below shows the beach area at Maple Bay with some fall leaves lining the Cultus Lake shoreline. These are the rocks I’m referring to, and they make up much of the beach area. You can also see the area where Watt Creek drains into Cultus Lake and has carved a small channel into the beach rocks. The first photograph here shows this view from the opposite direction, and you can see the raised edges of the Watt Creek bed in the green trees behind the colourful Cottonwoods.

fall leaves at maple bay beach on cultus lake

Fall Leaves along Maple Bay Beach on Cultus Lake (Purchase)

All this description of rock is relevant in terms of the damage suffered here after my visit. Apparently so much new rock came down the creek with the rush of water from the mountains above that it filled the creek bed entirely. Watt Creek then had to choose a new path and decided flowing down the path through the picnic area offered the least resistance. After this and subsequent storms there was a lot of damage to the picnic area from erosion by the creek as well as the deposit of roughly 1-1.5m (3-5 ft) of new rocks which in some places covered the picnic tables. I don’t know if they’ll dig it all out or just raise the picnic tables on top of that new rock but either way there is a lot of work to get that part of the park open for visitors again! I feel fortunate to have visited and photographed this area (and quite a few others) just before they were altered by these storms.

I found this video of the damage that shows what the area looks like after the storms. Categorizing this as a slide seems incorrect but it does show the area well. It looks like some excavation has occurred on the Watt Creek bed as I presume they aim to send the creek back into its old path.

fall leaves cottonwood trees

Fall Foliage on Black Cottonwood (Purchase)

These very large Black Cottonwood trees are what drew me to the area from the main road. I don’t think many recent years have had this kind of fall leaf color in the Cottonwoods – but it was great this year. After walking through the campground to Maple Bay beach I made the photograph above of the vibrant color of the Cottonwood leaves. While the fall leaves draw more attention, the trunks of these Cottonwoods were very large and interesting as well. I was trying to show how imposing they are in this particular spot (there are 6-7 large trees growing together if I recall correctly) by looking through the gap between two of them to the picnic tables just beyond.

cottonwood tree trunks and picnic tables

Black Cottonwood Trunks and Picnic Tables (Purchase)

One of the views I was not expecting at Maple Bay on Cultus Lake was Mount Cheam (Lhílheqey) – and with some fresh snow on it as an added bonus. If the park reopens I’ll be back here this winter or spring to try to take in this view again, maybe with some better weather. That said, the clouds had the courtesy to not block Cheam while I was photographing that day. The building in the foreground is at the Honeymoon Bay Group Campground which is also part of Cultus Lake Provincial Park.

mount cheam and cultus lake

Mount Cheam and Cultus Lake (Purchase)

While the clouds did not block Mt. Cheam they did bring an interesting rain storm over the Chilliwack area that I viewed from Maple Bay just before I left. The patterns in the clouds were quite interesting and I was fortunate they were not just south of their location or I’d have been quite wet. When I drove back through the area to Chilliwack the rainfall was quite heavy and that is always better to run into after a 20 minute walk back to the car rather than before!

storm clouds over cultus lake

Storm Clouds north of Cultus Lake (Purchase)

For more photographs of Cultus visit my Cultus Lake Provincial Park gallery.

Port Moody’s Shoreline Trail

The Shoreline Trail boardwalk during low tide at the Port Moody Arm of Burrard Inlet in Port Moody, British Columbia, Canada.

shoreline trail in port moody

Shoreline Trail Boardwalk in Port Moody (Purchase)

Another location I visited in search of some fall foliage in 2021 was the Shoreline Trail area of Port Moody. I’d previously visited Port Moody and photographed some nice color in Rocky Point Park to the west. The Shoreline Trail itself runs from Rocky Point Park around the Port Moody Arm of Burrard Inlet all the way to Old Orchard Park on the north side of the inlet. In the first photograph you can see the somewhat iconic view of a park bench on the boardwalk of the Shoreline Trail with some nice fall foliage provided by Black Cottonwood (Populus trichocarpa) trees in the background (with fresh snow on Mount Seymour). I’ve mentioned finding fall foliage during moments of sunshine before, as that is sometimes elusive here at that time of year. This particular afternoon yielded exactly one sunny break which lasted just a few minutes but luckily I was in place already and made the first photograph above. Compared to the photograph below, the colours really light up in the sunshine!

fall leaves at shoreline trail lookout in port moody

Fall at the Shoreline Trail Lookout in Port Moody (Purchase)

The second photograph here shows the wooden viewing area near Old Millsite Park across Burrard Inlet. The pilings in the mudflats are from an old mill site that burned down in 1949. Much like the nearby Barnet Marine Park, this area shows some relics of a more industrial past here and there along the trail. Noons Creek empties into Burrard Inlet near the right side of this photograph and many shorebirds feed on the old bits of salmon and other nutritional items deposited into the inlet by the creek. Consequently, one of the exposures I made of this composition had a bit more of a Seagull element than I’d anticipated!

apartment towers in port moody

Apartment/Condo Towers in Port Moody (Purchase)

After photographing from the south side of Burrard Inlet I headed along the trail to the same viewpoint as above. The apartment/condo tower photo above shows one of the views from that lookout.

For more photographs of the Port Moody area visit my Port Moody Gallery.

A Fall Day at Deer Lake Park in Burnaby

Reflections in Deer Lake on a fall day at Deer Lake Park in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada.

deer lake fall reflections burnaby

Reflections at Deer Lake In Burnaby (Purchase)

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Last year was a great year for fall foliage and there was still some remaining when I visited Deer Lake Park in Burnaby during mid November. This was after the first damaging atmospheric river this part of British Columbia dealt with. Deer Lake itself didn’t suffer much in the way of damage though some trails were initially flooded due to the influx of water. Not much of this was visible when I was there 4 days later although some trees had fallen. I parked at a new (to me) starting point on the west side of the park and walked around the lake. While the sun made on a few short appearances wind stayed quiet so there were some great reflections much of the afternoon. The photograph above shows hints of fading fall leaves in the larger trees such as the Maples and some good foliage in the Willows near the shore of the lake. The building in the background is the Shadbolt Centre for the Arts which sits above the “festival lawn” that is used for festivals and concerts.

two people enjoying the view at deer lake in burnaby

Enjoying the view at Deer Lake Park (Purchase)

I photographed various people enjoying the view on the newly replaced dock/viewing area on the north side of Deer Lake, but I prefer this wider view of two seniors in this spot flanked by the nice foliage of the Willow trees. All those dark shapes you see on the festival lawn in the background are a rather large flock of Canada Goose manure spreaders roaming the area and occasionally making a racket.

hart house at deer lake park in burnaby

Hart House (1921) vs. New “City of Lougheed” Towers (Purchase)

The Lougheed Mall area in Burnaby is undergoing a huge transition due to increased transit and with that comes a lot of new development and condo towers. It has certainly changed a lot since I lived nearby in the late 1990’s. Every time I visit Deer Lake or Burnaby Lake it bugs me a bit I didn’t visit at all when I lived fairly close! I liked the contrast in this scene between the historic Hart House (built in 1912 in the Tudor Revival style) and the “City of Lougheed” towers in the background. There are going to be many more towers there in the future but personally I’d rather look at Hart House and the other historic buildings around the edges of Deer Lake Park. Hart House has been home to the Hart House restaurant since 1988.

deer lake reflections metrotown towers

Metrotown Towers and Deer Lake In Burnaby (Purchase)

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The last time I photographed this scene at Deer Lake was the previous autumn, and many of these towers were still being finished an some still had cranes erecting them. A lot of the skyline around Deer Lake Park seems to be changing and I imagine the next time I’m looking at this scene there may very well be another crane in sight.

In September of 2021 I was at Deer Lake for a quick visit while on my way back from Richmond and photographed a few scenes in the gardens and along the shore of Deer Lake. While I was near the dock pictured in the second photograph above, a young couple came down with a dingy and launched into the water near that location. You can see from the photograph above there are a lot of weeds in the water near the shore, and were much thicker during that point in the season. The progress was very very slow getting through that thick weed layer with the dingy. The young lady involved seemed increasingly less impressed with the frequent off colour exclamations and oars flailing about that never yielded the joy of open water. When I left they were still about 15 feet from the edge, it was getting dark, and the audible bickering was ramping up. Hopefully they did not require rescue of any kind, though I did find it rather amusing as did others passing by on the shoreline trails.

More photographs of Deer Lake and other parks in the City of Burnaby can be found in my Burnaby gallery.