Posts Tagged ‘port alberni’

Bigleaf Maple in Macmillan Provincial Park

Bigleaf Maple (Acer macrophyllum) along the riverbed of the Cameron River at Macmillan Provincial Park in Port Alberni, British Columbia, Canada

bigleaf maple near cameron river in macmillan provincial park

Bigleaf Maple (Acer macrophyllum) along the Cameron River (Purchase)

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    The Bigleaf Maple (Acer macrophyllum) in this photograph (left) is a good example of an ecological “edge effect”. In ecology the edge effect refers to the phenomenon that species (and diversity) you would normally see within an area change along the boundary with a different area. This can be the edge of a trail or road, a clear cut, grassland/forest transitions and in this case, the edge of the Cameron River in Macmillan Provincial Park on Vancouver Island. In this particular type of forest, you’ll get Bigleaf Maples, Vine Maples, Red Alder (successional species) and a number of other tree species growing on a newly formed or existing edge. Just inside the edge the majority of the trees are conifers such as Western Red Cedar and Douglas Fir. This was one of the better specimens of mature Bigleaf Maple in Macmillan Provincial Park that I found. The tree on the right hand side of the image is a Red Alder (Alnus rubra) and is also a frequent edge resident.

You can see more of my photos of this area in my Vancouver Island Gallery.

Petroglyphs in Port Alberni

Petroglyphs carved in a rock face on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada

stanley park rose garden cottage

Petroglyphs in Port Alberni

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   These petroglyphs were the first I’d ever seen on Vancouver Island during my trip this spring. Not much is known about these apparently, though as whole they are called “K’ak’awin” by the Hupacasath First Nations people. Not always clear what sort of creatures some of these were depicting, but they were very interesting to look at.

   I photographed one other petroglyph in Port Alberni – this one looks a bit like a sea turtle to me.

Martin Mars (Hawaii Mars) Water bomber

Martin Mars (Hawaii Mars) water bomber floating on Sproat Lake in Port Alberni, British Columbia, Canada

martin mars hawaii water bomber in sproat lake near port alberni british columbia

Hawaii Mars Martin Mars water bomber on Sproat Lake

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   The Martin JRM Mars water bombers are former U.S. Navy planes now re-purposed for civilian use. This is the Hawaii Mars (built in 1946) on Sproat lake near Port Alberni, British Columbia.

Cameron Lake Storm Clouds

A storm rolls in at sunset over Cameron Lake near Port Alberni, British Columbia, Canada

a storm rolls in over cameron lake at sunset - near port alberni bc

Cameron Lake near Port Alberni, BC (Purchase)

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   A few months ago during my trip to Vancouver Island I had a lot of perfectly clear, sunny skies that were not always photogenic. I was lucky on one of my last days there to get a cloudy evening to photograph Cathedral Grove and a few other areas near Port Alberni. I quite enjoyed this scene as a storm rolled in over Cameron Lake near Port Alberni, British Columbia, Canada. Not that colourful, but it was a nice spot to sit by the lake and photograph back in early June. The wind on the lake helped create some interesting images of the waves and branches on the nearby trees as well.

More of my images from Vancouver Island can be found in my Vancouver Island Gallery.

Cathedral Grove Fallen Trees

Fallen trees at Cathedral Grove in Macmillan Provincial Park near Port Alberni, British Columbia, Canada

fallen trees in cathedral grove at macmillan provincial park near port alberni, british columbia

Cathedral Grove Rainforest (Purchase)

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   Macmillan Provincial Park lies to the east of Port Alberni on British Columbia’s Vancouver Island. This photo was made in the Cathedral Grove area of the park, and a shows two fallen, large trees (windstorm casualties) along the trail. While there are many large trees there, it was a challenge to show any of the larger ones in the context of their natural environment (this photo does not fulfill that challenge, obviously). First it is often difficult to give a sense of scale with trees, especially those not surrounded by recognizable foreground elements (or people hugging the trunk). Second, many of the larger trees were rather highly visited by the tourists in the area and were not longer really sitting in a natural setting.

   That said, Cathedral Grove is a great place to stop and stretch your legs (or photograph for 2 hours like I did). It is not the best example of an “old growth” forest that many purport it to be, however. Still, this park receives a lot of visitors each year, indicating that at least some people do have some manner of interest in this kind of nature. Even though this is a bit of a pseudo forest in a way, high interest from the public is a good thing. Genuine old growth forest would likely cease to be as diverse as it should be upon becoming a highly visited tourist destination, so with Cathedral Grove I think a decent balance is found.