Hangin’ in the Forest

Hiking the Loree Forest Trails
Hangin' in the forest,
it's where we love to be.
With a couple of our favourite people,
talking to the trees.
Flowers of the Forest
Flowers of the forest floor,
soon they won't be here anymore.
They'll be covered with the winter snow,
awaiting springs warm, sunny glow.
A nice walk in the forest,
breathing the air of the trees.
Treading carefully over roots,
photographing bumblebees.
Paths of rocks.
Paths of roots.
Paths of trees,
with autumn leaves.
People from here.
People from there.
The people are mine,
wherever they are.

Overlooking Georgian Bay
On top of the beautiful hills of the Georgian Peaks Ski Resort,
overlooking the Bay's cool, blue waters.
I skied here a few times,
a long time ago.
Twisted my ankle on a first run,
skied the rest of the day.
Walked with crutches,
the rest of the month.
Up on top of Ontario’s mountain.

National Forest Week

A tree, is so much more than just a 🌳 tree!

This week, September 19th through to September 25th, is National Forest Week.

This year’s theme is “Our Forests, Continually Giving. “

‘A beacon of renewal, resilience, and hope, for the future. ‘

Simcoe County Forests

The top photo demonstrates what our neighbouring Simcoe County forest looked like 40 years ago.

The bottom photo was taken today. It shows the changes that have taken place as the pine trees were harvested, and a deciduous forest allowed to prosper.

Autumn, in the Simcoe County forest.

Simcoe County has been named the Forest Capitol of Canada, for 2022. For the second time.

Back in 1982, the County recieved the award for the first time.

Winter, in the forests of Simcoe County.

Simcoe County is being recognized for the role forests play in socio- economic, and environmental health. Plus it’s sustainable forest management practices.

A great way to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Simcoe County Forests.

Cathedral Grove, MacMillan Provincial Park, BC.

On the way to Tofino, 800 year old trees, 80 feet high, in a bed of ferns and dripping with moss.

Mount Maxwell Provincial Park, Salt Spring Island. BC.

Old growth forests, planted forest, forests like our own little forest that has developed on it’s own. Gradually populating an acre of field with pines, spruce, maple, oaks, and any other tree that wants to call our little plot of land home.

Happy National Forest Week!

A forest, is so much more than just a forest!

Spelunking: Singhampton Lookout and Caves

Sun and shade
Black and white
Shade and sun
Cold,cold rocks
And lots of fun!
Exploring new trails

An amazing trail of root paved paths, winding through the forest. A forest full, of rocks, of caves, and of crevasses.

Shades of white and green
White birch bark
Streams of sunshine
Texture and colour
Birds in rhyme.
Cool and dark

The temperature change, deep in the caves and crevasses, was a welcome cooling, on a warm September day.

Down in….

A wonderful, young couple helped us navigate our way through the maze of crevasses, and rock. They were in the early days of their relationship, and I enjoyed the privilege of taking their first ‘as a couple’ photos; other than the selfies that they themselves had taken.

Reaching the top
Rays of sunshine 
Old,old rocks
Good foot wear
and dry socks.

We met lots of wonderful people today. Most moving twice as fast as we were. But, we were twice as old as they were. So we called it even.

Beautiful rocks
Dark green moss
Cool, dark rocks.
Well marked trails
No hand rails.
A view from the top.
Through the trees,
Behind the leaves,
Lies the beautiful Georgian Bay!

Sooke Potholes Provincial Park

Sooke River, a cool spot, for rest and relaxation, on a warm summer’s day.

We knew it was going to be a perfect day when we stopped by a little Cafe, and a chorus of Bye Bye Miss American Pie, broke out amongst the staff and patrons.

So inviting.

Sooke River, a series of deep, naturally carved and polished rock pools.

Glacial action carved a pathway into the natural bedrock. Huge boulders carried along by rushing waters, carved the infamous potholes of Sooke Potholes Provincial Park.

The beauty of nature.

A narrow staircase was left behind by a developer who decided that a Provincial Park would be more beneficial than a resort.

A perfect place for a summer swim.

A wonderful place for a picnic lunch, hiking, relaxation, and finding that perfect rock.

A perfect way to end a perfect day.

The Beauty of The Butchart Gardens

‘A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in.’ Greek Proverb

In 1904, Jennie Butchart had the idea to beautify the worked-out limestone quarry which had supplied her husband, Robert Pim Butchart’s, nearby cement plant.

As we walked through the gardens, we reminisced about our flower beds back home. Reflecting on the plants gifted and traded for, from friends, and from relatives. I thought about all of the Soul Sister creations, and other pieces of art that adorn the gardens,  pathways, and forest, of our little piece of Eden, a five hour flight away.

Each day
Requires us to receive
Linger long
Under waterfalls of grace
Get saturated,satiated. Author Unknown
Flowers are the music 
Of the ground
From earth's lips
Spoken without sound. Edwin Curran

Brown Bear,
Brown Bear,
What do you see?
Bill Martin Jr/Eric Carle
Advice From a Tree.
Stand tall and proud
Sink your roots into the earth
Be content
With your natural beauty
Go out on a limb
Drink plenty of water
Remember your roots.
Enjoy the view.
Created by your true nature.com

Roses are red, my love
Violets are blue.
Sugar is sweet, my love
But not as sweet as you!
Bobby Vinton
A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it.
It just blooms.
Zen Shin

‘You must be absolutely honest and true in the depicting of a totem for meaning is attached to every line. You must be particular about detail and proportion. ‘ Emily Carr

Be silent my dear, and enjoy the scene
As we walk in this Japanese Garden serene.
The sun is shining in the afternoon sky,
And treeline bamboo catches the eye. Joyce Hensley
'I think that I shall never see, a poem, as lovely as a tree.' Kilmer 1913

A wonderful day on Vancover Island.

Wolves of the Haliburton Forest

A part of the wolf pack at Wolf Lodge, in the forests of beautiful Haliburton.

Housed in a 15 acre enclosure, these very photogenic wolves rested, and played, and lazily responded to the click of my camera.

Such a big mouth!

I remember when, as a young girl, my father calling us to gather at the kitchen window. Together we stood, and watched, as a pack of wolves bounded across a field of hay.

My father referred to them as Timber Wolves. We witnessed wild life at it’s finest on that day. I, sadly, haven’t seen a wolf in the wild since that time.

Still shedding winter coats.

Free to roam 15 acres of natural forest, we were very happy to find the wolves very close by.

So beautiful!

The wolf pack that ran through our fields so many years ago, were viewed through the glass of an old kitchen window.

The wolves of Wolf Lodge were viewed through thick panes of glass.

The Alpha wolf watchs over her pack.

We watched as this wonderful wolf gently encouraged the wolf cubs to move out of the sun, and into the shade of the enclosure’s beautiful trees.

Perfect picnics tables to close a back to nature kind of day!

Ending the day, with good food, and good company.

Life of the Forest – part three of three – The Peaceful Forest.

A home for the birds….
'A hive for the buzzing bees
A nest for birds
There ain't no words
For the beauty, the splendor, the wonder of the.. ' by the Cowsills
Old and new growth

Having read both Finding the Mother Tree, and The Hidden Life of Trees, I have decided to allow the centre of our forest, the little piece untouched by my saw and slippers, to remain as it is.

This small portion of the forest is home to three large oak trees, numerous pine and spruce trees, and a variety of coniferous and decidous saplings. Plus grasses, ferns, wild flowers, and a wide variety of fungi.

A forest where the trees connect with the soil, with the fungi and the mushrooms, communicating through a large underground network.

Red Squirrels have turned this old pile of brush into their home.
From someone else’s forest floor, to our forest floor.

While looking at this part of the forest, I am reminded of a story my father used to tell about his first impressions of this new country, Canada, he and his small family were about to call home.

When stepping off of the train, surrounded by forest, he surveyed the area and thought to himself, ‘it won’t be difficult to find employment in this country, they have yet to trim their trees.’

In the forest the Mother Trees recognizes, and talks to their kin, shaping future generations.

I have always been a tree hugger, but now I hug them for a different reason. Or maybe now I’m realizing the reason.

Life of a Forest- part one – The Planted Forest.

The Forest, through the eyes of a forget-me-not.

I just finished reading The Hidden Life of Trees by Peter Wohlleben, and discovered what trees feel and how they communicate. In Wohlleben’s work, his research follows the science of, Canadian, Suzanne Simard whose story is told in her book, Finding the Mother Tree. These two books have taught me so much about my little forest, which I have separated into three parts. The first being The Planted Forest.

The Planted Forest

This part of our forest was planted. I had brought home a couple of bundles of spruce saplings from a tree nursery where I had seasonal employment. My father stopped by and planted these little spruts in the northeast corner of our property. His work being interrupted as he had to rescue two, adventurous, three year olds. Returning them to their moms, after they had left the backyard and were traveling down the road to visit their dads at work.

He planted these seeding, in straight rows. They bordered on a much taller pine forest that had been planted years earlier by the Ministry of Natural Resources. He planted these trees thirty-five years ago.

Left unattended, these seedlings grew into trees. The forest becoming the beautiful sanctuary it is today. Occasionally they gave one of their own to adorn our living room at Christmas time.

I wonderful place to just sit….

This past year I have spent a lot of time in this part of the forest. I trimmed branches and removed dead trees.

I’ve learned from reading this past week, that forests allowed to develop on their own provide for one another, and communicate with one another.

Trees planted by people remain individuals, growing independently. They will age, but not to the years of those left to naturalize on their own.

I went back into this forest today. I sat on my bench. It is made from the branches of the cedar tree on the opposite side of our property. I contemplated, what would these trees be like if they communicated with one another?

The path leading to The Planted Forest.