And so I decide on some de-stressing time for me and Eddie. Since hurting his cruciate ligament two months ago, he has had a few off leash walks on the smooth paths at Osborne Bay Park or MacAdam Park, and his daily walks around Crofton and along the seawalk, but all hikes on uneven terrain have been on hold. But he's doing well, and his anxious energy is reaching a crescendo, so I bundle him into the van, and we head to Chemainus Lake. The 2.5 km loop trail there is quite good but does contain rocky areas and protruding tree roots, as well as many little semi-cleared side-paths to explore. And the whole park is off leash.
First stop was on the road between Crofton and Chemainus. There is a wonderful view of the estuary, little islands, and the north shore mountains there, which varies as the tide ebbs and flows, and I have been meaning to photograph it for ages. I pass it at least once a week:
|View from Crofton Road|
|North Shore mountains in the distance|
When we got to the lake, around 9 AM, we were the only ones there with the exception of one angler trying his luck from the small fishing dock. Eddie took off like a shot, and I quickly found out his excellent recall was no longer so excellent. Out came the high-value, wonderfully smelly dried salmon treats and the clicker, and we immediately did a refresher course, clicking and treating our way around the first quarter of the lake. He caught on fast.
|I'm comin', mama, I'm comin'!!!!|
By half way around the lake, he was coming as soon as I called. He had also worked off enough energy that he was willing to wait by my side as I took in the scenery - the beautiful reflections in the streams, the steam rising from rotted logs as the sun warmed their moist surfaces, sunlight on fresh spring growth, the little waterfalls where rivulets of runoff cascaded over stones on their way down to the lake.
|Water cascades over rocks|
By three quarters of the way around the lake, he was tired and had slowed down considerably. For every metre I walked, he had walked two - charging ahead and being recalled, charging off on side paths and being recalled, tearing around me checking out every sight and smell. I take a few more photos, give him a few more treats, and we both head home happy and relaxed.