Thursday, August 27, 2009

a walk in the 'skeg, DFP 4

Danielle and I went on a full-gear walk around the town's Muskeg Creek Trails. It's a closed loop of about 10 or kms of trail and it's good to walk on because it has ups and downs and is in the forest.

Our packs are about 20 lbs each so it was a work out.

As an added bonus, it rained. That may not seem like a bonus but it was because we tried out the rain resistance of our camera bags, our clothes, our packs and most importantly, ourselves. And we did it, thought it was a lot harder with our packs.

But that's ok, we may have to at some point have to run through the rain uphill to catch a train... or something like that.

Anyway, here are some photos of the adventure.

The trails go near, and may even be maintained by Athabasca University. So there's some nicer parts before it goes into the forest more.

Danielle near the bridge before the path. D40, 10-24 mm. Automatic chose 1/15, f3.5.

Before we got to the trails, the sky was already pretty gnarly, looking like it was ready to rain. But we were more concerned with the looming darkness. Danielle was, I was all like "don't worry." It was dark when we were done. Almost pitch black.

Danielle checking out the cool sky. D40, 10-22mm. Auto chose 1/50, f/3.5
Detail of the cool sky. isn't it cool? D40, 10-22mm. Auto chose1/100, f/5

The path takes you across the University's Aurora Borealis and general near earth magnetism observatory, which is just a little building surrounded by a barbedwire fense. It has some of the standard dome things you'd expect an observatory to have, though not very big.

Cool barbed wire. D40 10-22mm, auto chose 1/50, f/3.5

This was the coolest shot. I purposely left out the observatory because it didn't look as cool with it in it.

Anyway, the coolest part of the walk was that when we first got into the forest, a hawk, or other bird of prey swooped near us and screached. It kind of scared us and we tried to take photos of it, but it just kept flying away.

As we walked through the forest, we'd keep seeing the bird flitter in front of us from tree to tree, just far enough away that we never knew where it was landing. Keep in mind we walked the 5 km trail and it makes that fact pretty cool.

So as it gets darker and darker, it gets to the point where it's almost impossible to see and see the hawk for the last time. As we walk to where we last saw it, we see a white beacon just falling perfectly from the sky. No wind, no spinning, just falling perfectly. We get closer and it's the hawk's feather.

I'm not one to believe in signs, but that's as close to one as I'll ever believe. I'll take it to mean the bird, or Hawkey as Danielle named him, thinks our trip idea is awesome and fully supports it.

I don't have a pic of the feather, which I have, or the bird, but here's another oddity I saw on the trek.

albino berries. D40, 10-22mm. Auto chose 1/6, f/3.5.

Lastly, I'm sure you've noticed, or maybe you haven't, but all these photos we're shot on my wideangle lens, allowing for cool effects. But does that matter? Not really, as long as the pics are awesome.

Anyway, enjoy

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