Snowbound

I’m struggling a bit, at this time of year, to come up with some different locations to hike. Of course, I know many places that I can go, but can I get in? There have been huge strides in the snow melting, over the last few days, and I can’t believe so much is gone now, however not everywhere.

The snow cover in the bush melts at a much slower rate than in clear areas and, the farther north you go, the less the snow has melted. When I got up this morning, I figured that I might take a run up to Mississagi Provincial Park, to do my annual Spring hike in there, before it opens for the season.

IMG_0008

It was a beautiful, sunny, warm day, and I have now shed most of my winter clothing, although I did, wisely, wear my winter boots today.

IMG_0006

This is what I was met with at the gate to the park, not a deal breaker, but not as clear as I had expected.

IMG_0001

I decided to walk in a ways, to assess the situation a bit better.

IMG_0002

The river, coming out of Jim Christ Lake(Christman Lake) flows under the road here….

IMG_0004

….and continues out the other side. I did notice, on the way up here, that many of the smaller ponds along the road were breaking up, and had some open water on them. On the bigger lakes, the ice cover is definitely taking a beating, and is showing signs of imminent failure, although I also saw a number of people out ice fishing on this beautiful day.

IMG_0005

I continued my hike into Mississagi.

So, there ya have it. The hike leader has called off this particular hike for today. Not to worry though, the day will not be wasted.

I noticed that, on the way up, there was no one at the Quirke TMA, and it would be a glorious hike on this kind of sunny day, so the game was afoot.

IMG_0013

Looking back, as I enter the Quirke TMA, you can see that there is some melting on the ponds here too.

IMG_0016

They don’t plow all the roads in this site, and you can see here what a difference that makes, at this time of year. However, I had just been to this site not too long ago, and I didn’t want to do the same route that I did last time, so I chose to do a different route. I was aware that the route I chose to do would involve hiking in some snow, but I felt that those area would be passable, and not too long.

IMG_0020 Panorama

So, off I went, into the beautiful, quiet sunshine.

IMG_0030

Last time I was here, I saw Wolf, and Fox tracks in the snow, but there was no snow on these roads this time.

IMG_0031

Even last years dead weeds seemed to enjoy the warmth of the sun, and it won’t be long until its prodigy spring from the ground to uphold the continuum.

IMG_0032 Panorama

It was about at this point that I headed off in a different direction than I took the last time I was here.

It doesn’t matter to me how many times I come to these place, because I never get tired of them. The wilderness is so vast up here that you can always find areas that you can’t remember seeing before.

IMG_0037 Panorama

Looking back, to make sure the sun is following me. 🙂

IMG_0042 Panorama

I’m heading to the west side of this site now, and the roads go through more bush on that side.

IMG_0052 Panorama

I’m taking pictures looking back here, as I go, because of the way the sun is shining.

IMG_0060 Panorama

I’m starting to use panoramas more and more, because I feel that they better represent what I’m seeing as I hike.

IMG_0070

Yep, I know, not a place you’d want to go swimming, but it does add to the colour of the area.

IMG_0074 Panorama

I didn’t see another person, not even a maintenance worker on this hike today.

IMG_0086

Now I’m going to be heading into some snow cover. These sections were relatively short, and added up to a total of less than a kilometer, but the snow did get up to knee deep in some places. It was almost certainly not as challenging as what I would have faced in Mississagi Provincial Park.

IMG_0087

I noticed, all along the way, that the maintenance workers had done some bush cutting, probably late last fall.

IMG_0089 Panorama

I decided to go right here, since the road to the left looked like it had more snow on it.

IMG_0092

This little tree is probably relieved that the snow is finally melting, so that it can soak up some sunshine, and grow.

IMG_0093

Coming out into the open again.

IMG_0098

Last years life, this years fertilizer, a cycle we are all part of.

IMG_0109

Looking back, to the snow and bush I just came out of.

IMG_0110

That is Evans Lake out there. The picture is a bit dark because I was shooing right into the sun.

IMG_0122 Panorama

I’ll be heading into a long section of snow covered bush road soon.

IMG_0127

Here we have some interesting tracks in the snow. They belong to a pair of Sandhill Cranes, probably just hanging around, waiting for the lake ice to melt.

IMG_0131 Panorama

Actually, Sandhill Cranes don’t ‘wait’ like we humans do, they live in the moment, aren’t thinking about the future. They just know the ice will melt, and they will be there when it does.

IMG_0134

Here we go, through more snow.

IMG_0142 Panorama

Looks like I have a bit of uphill ahead of me too.

IMG_0146

This snow was almost knee deep and, being uphill too, it made for a bit of a slog, but I knew that it would clear, eventually, and then it would be solid ground for the rest of the hike.

IMG_0152

Snowshoe Hare maybe?

IMG_0155

Coming out of the last long section of snow, and I definitely didn’t break any speed limits through there.

IMG_0158 Panorama

The road ahead looks clear, and dry now.

IMG_0199

Crossing over, at the end of the Quirke TMA, for the return trip back up the other side. I won’t be posting as many pictures on this side, because I covered most of this in a recent post. Also, I’m running low on space for pictures on my blog once again, so I will have to purchase more space soon.

IMG_0255 Panorama

Just a few shots on my return trip, back to the gate.

IMG_0037 Panorama

Lots of melting going on here.

IMG_0305 Panorama

The last leg, down the hill to the gate, at the end of this road, where my truck is parked. Another great hike, on another great day.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: