Monday, 24 September 2012

return to Vancouver and the Rockies 1984

Well while the weather is not too good I thought I would continue looking at past
Knox mountain on route to  Kelowna provided Townsend's Solitaire and Red Crossbills,while
stalking a juv American Robin I missed the bus and was rescued by some Jehovah witnesses
who took me down the trail to catch our bus.
The following morning in Kelowna park I photographed a Common Flicker and found a Canada
warbler a rarity here with its yellow breast and black necklace on its upper chest.
Next up Mission creek provided Cottonwoods flanking a river here northern waterthrush,red eyed and warbling vireos obliged in the adjacent hayfields bobolinks were at the extreme range of their habitat.Nearby Woodhaven Conservancy  a sharp shinned hawk crashed through the trees and the uncommon Nashville warbler.
On the 19th we left Kelowna  via Rogers pass and photographed  Columbian Ground Squirrels.
Onwards to Hope where we pass through Kicking Horse Pass its named for Sir James Hector a doctor
and Geologist who was badly kicked by his horse in 1858.
Now in Yoho NP taking its name from the Cree indian word meaning It is Beautiful"
Now 530 miles from Vancouver and 20 miles from Lake Louise.

My first view of this opalescent lake,its quite clear  but once the glaciers begin to melt the turquoise
colour develops.
Around the lake tame Gray Jays oblige,a Varied thrush calls its wheeze like call reminds me
of Yellowhammer.We continue climbing the sub alpine zone of note Northern Three toed Woodpecker stands out and on the ground Western Boreal Toad.A fleeting glimpse of
Snow shoe Hare but a Hoary Marmot poses for the camera.
The following morning we take in Vermillion lakes and Johnston Canyon rich birding habitats in
Banff NP.
On the 22nd of June we walk up to the Plain of the Six Glaciers it was a 7 mile walk but I was fairly fit then.
Leaving the Chateau grounds and the noisy Gray Jays,a White winged Scoter flew across
Lake Louise.The conifer lined lake held Golden and Ruby crowned Kinglets,a steady climb
through moraine and avalanche damaged trees held three species of thrush Hermit,Swainsons and
Varied.At the Cedar Tea House we saw a helicopter informing skiers of probable avalanches.
Here while having tea confiding Mountain Chickadees posed while Least Chipmunks investigated
our tea pot  and cke wrappers.
Other birds of note were Clark's Nutcracker named after William Clark who with Meriwether Lewis explorers of note,
and Sacajawea a Shoshone Indian maiden to whom these shining mountains were home.
The following day a pair of Solitary Sandpipers were breeding on Bear Pool.It was our last day in the
Rockies today we took in Moraine creek and trail westwards to Larch Valley we traipsed through thigh high snow in search of Gray crowned Rosy finch eventually we found 4 adults.
I  finally collapsed by Moraine lake  in the afternoon drying my boots out and noting the only Water
Pipt of the trip.The following morning we left Lake Louise and its wonderfull wildlife.

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