Days in Pictures

All these rivers and mountains

Slowly they’ll arise / Before our eyes

The Alouette River was never on my radar before last week. I don’t believe I’d ever even been in the area except for driving through… But then I heard of a rare bird sighting (a Black Phoebe) next to some pumphouse by some canal in some field, so that was our destination for September 9th.

The neat thing about the Alouette River Greenway is that a lot of it almost feels like back country to me. Of course I know it’s not, what with the farms and kayakers and the 15 minutes’ drive to the nearest McD. But for some reason the vibe is more remote than even some spots in Chilliwack I visited, like the Blue Heron Nature Reserve. Maybe it’s the mountains? Do “wide open spaces” and “mountains in the distance” add up to “away from civilisation” in my brain? Does it have to be a certain distance from the highway?

With all that pseudo-back-countryness I was hoping for lots of birds, especially fall migrants. Sadly, that did not happen. I saw a Savannah Sparrow—always welcome!—and a Turkey Vulture soaring far overhead… but aside from that, the pickings were not great.

In fact the Pitt River Dyke Trail, which we visited first, offered us a better bounty in the form of a chickadee and some Common Mergansers. And that’s with being nestled against a big train yard!

The really hilarious thing is that I totally forgot about about that damn Black Phoebe, and we didn’t get near the reported spot. No rarity for me. Boo.

Still, it was a good day. I explored new realms, the scenery was beautiful, and if I flubbed some bird shots, well, I did have the aforementioned scenery. I’m learning too that if I want to chase after rarities, I gotta commit! But also that it’s okay if I get distracted by other stuff.

View of Pitt River from the trail. Close to us is a wide shallow creek with a heron and various ducks
Also there was a Great Blue
The Pitt River rail bridge seen from some distance away on the trail. It is partly obscured by bushes. The river underneath can just about be seen. There are mountains and a blue sky.
I do like a nice rail bridge
The Alouette River, with a grounded and rotting boat on the opposite shore, next to a ruined quay
This stretch of the river is a bit of a dumping ground
Meeting of Pitt River and Alouette River
Meeting of two rivers
A shallower stretch of the Alouette River. The water is shallow and calm, and there is a kayak
A view of the Golden Ears Bridge

And when all else fails… take a deep breath and look up!

Looking straight up at the tops of trees

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