Monday, August 30, 2010

Outlook Saskatchewan

Outlook is only about 30km from Diefenbaker Lake. It is a nice clean little town. Here PJ took a few pictures of Will and I paddling under the bridges.

This old bridge is no longer used for traffic, but Outlook has plans to use the bridge as a tourist attraction.

There we go on down the river. There was a man standing on shore fishing. We rarely see people fishing from shore.

We stopped in Outlook to see the sights. Well one sight really. This is the Trans Canada Trail Pavilion at the walking bridge spanning the South Saskatchewan River.

The longest walking bridge in Canada. It was made from an old train trestle bridge.

Here is a view up river. The two bridges that we canoed under are barely discernible.

Here is a view down river from the top of the walking bridge.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Gardiner Dam

On approach to the Gardiner Dam at the north end of Diefenbaker Lake you can see the Dam's power structures. If you see this you are too far east.

A little way to the west I came across the Dam's water control structure. There is a line of bouys that block the way. It would be a fast ride down the dam.

Further west the canoist will come across a warning sign. Better late than never!

Finally on the north east corner of the lake there is a boat launch at Danielson Provincial Park.

There is PJ waiting at the boat launch to help us around the dam.

Everything is loaded up, ready to portage around the dam.

To get down to the other side, you just go straight across the highway and down a windy road through a hay field. Here Will and I are posing with the canoe. Will has been a great help, especially on Diefenbaker Lake.

The view down river from the top of the dam.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

3 comets at sunset

Here's something you don't see everyday.
Click on this picture and see a larger version.
The sun had just gone down and I went to take a picture of the sunset and saw these three comets.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Sunrise and Sailing

A sunset always makes a beautiful picture, but this sunrise was stunning.

One day, when the wind picked up, I took my little tarp and some driftwood and manufactured this little sail. It was quite nerve racking when the wind would gust. I thought for sure I would end up swimming for shore. The problem is, most of the time I do not have a tail wind, but I have had to fight against the wind an awful lot.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Lots Of Moose

There are mornings on the river when all the wildlife come out to play. I am sure the moose hunters would love to be out on the river on a morning like this, but the tranquility was so serene that I would never tell them.

Two cows grazing in the early morning.

A family of moose on an island. I know the picture is a little dark, but there is a cow and calf and bull in the picture.

A second family of moose. The bull, cow, and calf can more easily be seen in this picture.

A second bull moose was on the same island, only a couple of hundred metres away.

I think this elk was on the same island as the first moose family.

A short distance away, I saw this family of deer swimming across the lake in front of my canoe.

All in all, a very pleasant morning.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Brighter colours to brighten the day

A nice bright yellow flower.

Beautiful aquatic blooms

Rosehips are quite tasty and a great source of vitamin C

Wild Choke Cherries. These berries were growing on a small island, and were very sweet.

Wild grain

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Health Issues

I have been having small lapses in health while I have been out on the River. Mostly a bit of rest and lots of protein has been helping my recovery, but the large amounts of rain recently have been too much for me to handle. I have come home for a few days to dry out and hopefully recover more quickly. A symptom of Alpha 1 Antitrypsin Deficiency is that the body takes a much longer time to recover from illness. I will keep everyone updated for when I am able to head back out on the river. Please follow the Alpha 1 Canada link on the side of the page and donate a few dollars to the Charity. There are many kids out there with Alpha 1 that never even get the chance to experience a canoe trip. Any donation helps move Alpha 1 sufferers move toward a higher quality life.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Wildlife Sightings

An island full of seagulls.

A young moose watching intently from behind the bushes.

A calf watches me, while it's mother is resting.

This tree was just standing alone, so I thought I would take a picture of it.

A buck on shore. This is probably a very popular place in the autumn when hunting season starts.

A deer walking along the shoreline.

Another deer hiding in the bushes. The deer stand very still and are difficult to spot. At times like this, I dream about spending a thousand dollars on a much higher quality digital SLR camera, with a strong zoom lens.

Another beautiful sunset on the South Saskatchewan River.

I tried to take a picture of myself sitting by the campfire, using the timer on the camera, but I can barely be seen. The camera focused more on the few willow branches than on me. On this trip, I should be able to get a lot more practice taking pictures.

Here is a much clearer picture of my campfire. I love sitting by a crackling fire at the end of a day of paddling.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

More Pictures From The South Saskatchewan River

I love this picture. Mother Nature's abstract art!

I came across a fairly large patch of cactus growing on a hillside when trying to get high enough to get cell phone reception. There are lots of cactus growing all along the river, you just have to be cautious when looking for the restroom.

Just thought I would add a bit of flora.

About 500 metres from the ferry there are these bright yellow warning signs on either side of the river. The signs warn of the ferry and also of the underwater cable.

There are a few ferries crossing the western portion of the South Saskatchewan River. So far, they have all looked very similar.

There seems to be many Coyotes along the South Saskatchewan River. They are quite loud at night sometimes, howling back and forth. Here is another young family of Coyotes. A few moments after I took this picture, they ran off into the bush in answer of a distant coyote call.

A nice shot up river.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Some Pictures From The South Saskatchewan River

The sun rising behind an island.

Even with all the rain here in the Prairies, the water level is quite low, with lots of sand bars for the canoe to get hung up on.

A couple of coyote pups watched me from the shore.

A picturesque island.

The Highway 21 Bridge.

I almost stepped on this bullsnake while I was taking a break from paddling and exploring an island. It gave me quite the start. The lighter coloured ones like this look similar to the Western Rattler, but of course there was no rattle and the common diamond pattern was not present. This snake just crawled under a log.

Cell reception fades when the terrain becomes more hilly.