It's the middle of February, a time when much of Canada is still covered with snow and many Canadians are still wearing their woolies. And here on Vancouver Island, the flowers are popping up, the birds are nesting, the catkins are falling and tree buds are opening, and I am walking my dogs wearing just a light jacket over my short sleeved shirt.
|Buds opening on bushes and trees|
On Monday, my friend and co-columnist Liz and I took her dog, Sasha, and my dog Eddie for a hike to Crofton Lake and beyond. I hadn't been there for a while, as neither Charley nor Sadie were able to manage the walk the last year or more. Having Eddie to hike with brings a big smile back to my face; hiking on a February morning with the sun shining down and a friend by my side is sheer heaven.
|Liz and Sasha head up the trail|
|C'mon! Let's go!|
|We don't mind a bit of mud, mom!|
Rather than backtrack, we take another trail south to Crofton Lake, and soon catch glimpses of it through the trees.
|Crofton Lake through trees|
Even where the lake is not visible, the light streaming through the trees is magnificent.
The damp earth steams in the warmth of the sun, and in the distance we see two other hikers along the berm by the lake.
We hear the cry of a woodpecker up high in the trees, and spot an eagle at the top of another.
We watch ducks on the water, and breathe in the fresh air, enjoying the solitude, sunshine, and serenity that nature provides.
|Liz and Sasha enjoying the lake|
At one end of the lake, we spot an old canoe. Liz tells me it has been at the lake for ages - a man can at times be seen paddling it around the glassy water amid reeds and lilies and waterfowl. I am envious - I wonder if he would mind if I borrowed it one day?
|Canoe tucked away|
As we slowly descend, I chatter away about trails I want to check out, parks I want to explore. I am high on sunshine, high on spring, high on this beautiful island that I call home.
|Crofton Lake: February 13, 2012|