Saturday, July 29, 2017

A summer's stroll, a princess, and a strange-looking dragonfly

Friday's hike with my friend Pat took us to Hemer Provincial Park, just south of Nanaimo.  Although the day was very warm, the trail along Holden Lake was shaded and easy, with a light breeze coming from the lake.  There's 11 km of trail here in two large loops with adjoining cross trails, but we didn't cover them all as two of the three dogs (Lexi and Maggie) aren't much into hiking.  Nonetheless, we spent a good couple of hours on the trail that runs alongside the lake, returning the same way.  It was more of a summer's stroll than a hike, but just as enjoyable to be out among nature.

Holden Lake, alongside Hemer Provincial Park

The smaller of Pat's poms, Lexi, has become so resistant to walking that Pat recently purchased a dog stroller so she could still accompany us on easy trails.  This was her first hike with the stroller, and Lexi turned out to be a real princess - she sat up proudly and smiled royally the whole time.

The Princess in her Royal Carriage

Cosmo was just fine with this - he almost seemed to display brotherly affection for his smaller twin's need to ride in style.

Maggie, who also doesn't seem to care for walking much, especially not any distance, thought she might try lying down to see if that would get her a ride too.  (We actually tried putting her in the stroller - without Lexi -  on the way back, but she did not approved and decided she would walk instead!)

If ah lie down, will Mama get me some wheels too?

Along the trail were fluffy purple and gold flowers whose name I've forgotten, and perched atop on of them was a dragonfly.

Here's a closer look - I'm not sure if the slight breeze caused him to cover his head with his wings, or if something else was going on.  I can't find anything online to explain this unusual positioning.

The lake is surrounded by private lands (the park was a gift to the province from previous landowners), and I'm not sure if there is any public access for boats or if the ones we saw were all owned by residents along the shoreline.  Electric motors only, as far as I could tell - this fellow was enjoying trolling for some fish:

Benches along the trail gave us a place to sit for lunch, and clearings gave us lovely views of the water and the foliage in its shallows.

All in all, a lovely place to go on a summer's day - it was quiet, dogs must be on leash (and there were signs up warning that frequent complaints had led to stepped up enforcement and fines), and that made for a stressfree walk with two excitable poms and a timid Maggie.

Cosmo, seeking attention

Pat and the poms

The ever dignified and serious Maggie

(For my blog readers who are not on facebook - once again, I apologize for my absence.  It has been a crazy month - vet visits for both Maggie (followup on her allergies and thyroid and adjustments to her diet) and Allie (who is in kidney failure); laser treatments twice a week on my shoulder plus specialist visits etc; photoshoots and editing hundreds of pictures and then not having the time or energy to post them on the blog;  swimming; hiking; gardening; picking fruit from neighbours' trees and berries from my garden; visits to the piglets at the SPCA to help with their socialization etc; and trying to stay cool in hot dry weather. I shall try to do better at blogging in August!)


Marie said...

Nice to read of another of your hikes and to see the great pictures. Maggie looks quite settled in with her new home, good show! As usual the poms are gorgeous!

Gesine McHarg said...

Wonderful pictures and love those little comments. Missed you