Said the 4-year-old. It usually meant, “look what I am doing or have done or what the cats and dogs have done: but this time it was special. “Shh “she said as she motioned us to come quick and be quiet.
It was a beautiful female deer, down by the creek at the back of our property. We had a perfect view of her from the deck. She was quietly munching on rose hips and false Solomon Seal berries. She might be the same doe from last summer, she looks similar. What a treat.
And……. what a treat for the 4-year-old. A year ago she was afraid of the tiniest bugs, creatures, and animals. A clear case of NDD (nature deficit disorder). Today she embraces all. The telling point was when she requested help saving a frog who was hopping through the grass just before a dog training class. We had to help him through the fence, in case he got stepped on, maybe his mom was looking for him. Empathy training doesn’t come any easier.
It was a great hike to the ‘top of the world” at Sun Peaks Mountain. It is actually just a hop skip and a jump as the crow flies from our house. We live at the same elevation as the village and we could drive the back logging roads to Sun Peaks but its much more civilized to take the long way; a drive into town, turn right a drive up the highway and a right turn for a 32km ride up the mountain.
We went to see the alpine meadow flowers. In town there has been a vitriolic conversation and legislation acted on about the cosmetic use of pesticides (including herbicides). The council has banned the use for residential gardens. A moot point because nationally the federal government still allows the product to be sold. I don’t use insecticides or herbicides preferring natural methods (lady bugs for aphid control) or good old-fashioned physical labour. It is a constant war with burdock and thistle. I dig it up and it keeps on growing. I also believe that one mans weed is a another man’s toilet paper. Just think we have 1000’s of tourist coming here to see our wild flowers in their natural setting but don’t let them find any of them in our perfectly manicured front yards.
The dry warm spring and the high heat so far this summer has hastened the flowers growth. Lupines and balsam were finished and asters and paintbrush were coming to their end as well. Still it was a beautiful and adventuresome hike.
Our good friends Krista and Mike came with us and Krista is the best to person to have with you when you are identifying plants. Agrology is her specialty, as well as telling harrowing bear encounter stories.
When she called back to me that a bear was on trail behind me I thought she was kidding. Nope! Big bear.
Arenaria, wouldn’t this make an attractive ground cover.
Sun Peaks, the walk down through a field of Cow Parsley
Being a candidate for knee replacements it’s a long hike for me, especially the down hill. I didn’t bring a walking pole so Mike made me one.
He had his trusty pocket knife out and fashioned one in no time. I left it at the bottom in the bucket of loaner walking poles. Hope the hiker who takes it enjoys!
We are so lucky to live in such a beautiful part of the world. Tourists flock to our natural surroundings and wide open spaces. We need to fight to keep it this way. Education is the key. Make sure your children and grandchildren don’t suffer from NDD (nature deficit disorder). Inform yourself, get involved.
p.s. the marmot insisted on giving us a lecture at the bottom. He thinks we should all get along in nature as well.