Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Prairie Dog

Something new
A new way to go
Not a trail, not a bicycle or wheelbarrow
Not a canoe, kayak or boat
Not a Kubota, a Ford or a Subaru
I took to the skies
In a Boeing
Bound for a small prairie town

Something new
Not a mountain
Not a waterfall or marmot
It was a big place
With lots of room to breathe the entire sky
And things blowing far off on the horizon
And people and pups
Love, Laughter, Family
I belonged there
With them all

A prairie dog Christmas.

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Time Parade

The seconds click past, a paper flower on each spoke

Minutes prance along, spangles and tassles tossing
Hours and hours press close, hoping for a glimpse

The days reach and stretch, sweets are at hand

The wiley weeks slip past, a siren sounds

The broom and wheelbarrow escort the months
and the band fades

Monday, 16 September 2013

Harvest Time

The hard little apples are glowing red in their tree. I could be fooled into thinking they are sweet. But I know it is not so. They are crisp and lovely, but so very tart.

Not everyone minds. My neighbour from the forest is teaching her children how to harvest the apples.

Mother watches, listens and smells. She is standing guard over her fawns.

The fawns can safely enjoy the harvest. I'm glad to share this bounty.


Table Mt. Trail
Wells Gray Provincial Park
approx. 670 m gained, 6.5 hrs return

Have patience, this trail climbs through the forest for a long time before rewarding you with it's alpine. After leaving Phillip Creek behind, there is only one place to lap up some water. Be sure to bring a water bottle. There were no other pups or humans on this trail, but there were some squirrels and birds. At the top is a long walk through hot meadows with very little shade on a sunny day. We stopped 150 m/2km from the summit. If you go, remember you will need 8 hours of daylight so you can get down the road before dark.

Battle Mountain, Phillip Mountain and Caribou Meadows

150 meters more to the summit, for another day

This is the big flat table part of Table Mountain.

One pooped pup crosses Phillip Creek on the last stretch before the parking lot.

Monday, 9 September 2013

Joss Mountain Fog

Joss Mountain Trail
Three Valley Gap, BC
about 750 m elevation

This trail winds steeply up and up through a beautiful forest with lots of huckleberries. There are not many places to get water, so be sure to bring some along. There are open meadows for running and rock piles with pikas. At the top there are ptarmigan. If you find these things irresistable, bring your leash. While the humans always celebrate the great views at the destination, I enjoy the journey. When the destination arrives, I can have a nap!

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Lucky Dog Down Time

I consider myself to be the Lucky Dog. And while it is true that I love to go hiking in the mountains and paddling on the lakes, I do enjoy some down time as well. When the last long golden days of summer come silently sneaking into view, you can find me at the cabin, enjoying some down time.

The Sun, the Shade

Raft Peak Trail
Clearwater, BC
approx. 3 hours return

The drive here is an adventure in itself. The hike is very steep through meadows filled with ground squirrels, but the trail is not long. At the rim, you can wander where you like. Watch out, though, because some parts of the trail have slipped off the rim. It's a long ride to the bottom! All day long the sun shines full on this naked mountain. Be sure to take some water. If you have a lot of long shaggy fur, you may want to wait until fall to hike this trail. At the summit, I found a nice cool piece of shade underneath an overhaning rock.

The Long and the Short of It

Long Hill
Wells Gray Provincial Park
about 6 hours return

A huckleberry hike up to the meadows, through a shady forest with streams where you will find a few dogs and their humans. Across the meadows and past Shiela Lake you will hear marmots whistling. The way up Long Hill is steep with rocks and boulders. Try not to be distracted by the ground squirrels!

Wednesday, 14 August 2013


Philip Lake Trail
Wells Grey Provincial Park
up 350 meters then down again
About 2 hours

We started on the road less travelled. It was bumpy, steep and narrow. I usually like to hang my head out the window on this kind of backroad, but not today! Today the shrubby alders were trying to climb in through the windows, slapping my face as we drove past. I tried to look through the front window, but all I could see was the sky. As the truck rocked and rolled on it's slow grind upwards, I laid back my ears and clung to the seat. When we arrived at the trailhead, I was relieved. The hike is pretty and we had the place to ourselves. At the lake I was distracted by a particular scent.

It was hard to place the sweet herby aroma. I continued to explore the shrubby lakeshore.

Eureka! How could I forget? It is huckleberry season.



Tale of Two Trails

Moul Falls Trail
Wells Grey Provincial Park
short and sweet

This trail is an easy 30 minute hike to a pretty waterfall. If you are careful, you can get to the base of the waterfall to enjoy a refreshing mist shower. It is a joyful thing on a sunny summers day!

Clearwater Lake Viewpoint Trail
Wells Gray Provincial Park
steep and sweaty

The trail begins at the boat launch and wanders along the lakeshore before heading uphill to the viewpoint. You can expect to be about 2 hours. After you leave the lake there is no water, so bring some with you.

Cabin Critters

There are plenty of neighbours at the cabin in summer.

A Guest

I have met a new friend. I welcomed her into my home. I entertained her with tennis balls and squeaky toys. I shared a bully stick with her. I offered her a bowl of freah water and some kibble. We played chase and we napped. Her name is Juliete. She is lovely.

"It is the east, and Juliet is the sun"

Wednesday, 24 July 2013


They begin to plan 9 months in advance. There are flights to book, accommodations to secure, sights and activities to prepare for. There are hours and hours spent studying this map and the other map. They have their noses stuck in a book as they read their way through a big stack piled up on the desk, taking up valuable Chili time. How many phone calls and emails? How many websites? Uncountable. They need to get their technology ready. GPS, Smart phone, IPad, sim card, batteries, cables, converters, cords. I detest the technology even more than books! They are absorbed with it all...what about me?

The talk is all about what to take. How many pairs of pants? Which boots? The down jacket or the fleece jacket? Which gloves? Will the hiking poles fit? Insect repellent and sunscreen? They forget to talk about belly rubs, fetch and walks. There is no talk of toys or treats.

They become frenzied. The lawn needs to be mowed, the yard tidied. The laundry needs to be done, fridge needs to be emptied. Piles of gear are stuffed into bags, pulled out, re-stuffed. Papers, books and maps are sorted and stashed. Early mornings and late nights, the pace is frantic. I stand by watching and wondering.

They claim they are going on a vacation.

I have had experience with the vacation and I have learned a good Chili lesson. While the humans jet off on "vacation", I join grandma for treats, walks, fetch, belly rubs, napping, and undivided attention. The Staycation is right for me.

Staycation with Grandma 

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Hide 'n' Seek

Among the bunch grass, camas and larkspur lies a treasure. To find it you will have to follow the trail to the top of the cliffs. Be sure to go on a sunny day in early June. Continue up the shoulder through the open pine forest. Don't forget to smell the fragrant juniper as you pass by. The crickets may try to distract you, but remain steadfast. You must press on past the first breathtaking drop from the rim. Be sure-footed when you pass the gnarly grey grabbing root. That would be your last trip.

You'll know you are near when you feel the scrabbly red rocks beneath your feet.

Before you lies the garden of June.

Revel in it.

Saturday, 11 May 2013

The Heat

Chillin' in the shade. No more shaggy fur!

        Today we hit the trail before the heat. Although we were hiking early, we were not alone. There were a few million mosquitoes looking for breakfast. With a shortage of hikers at that time of day, those mosquiteos were so glad to see us.

       Mount Rose is a friendly, short hike just right for a stretch, with plenty of time leftover for fetch, naps, tug-of-war and an evening stroll.

Friday, 10 May 2013


Have you wondered what is next?
Have you thought of sharing a smile?
Have you noticed how a breeze can tickle?
Have you wondered about mysteries?
Have you thought how great it is to be alive?
Have you noticed how beautiful the world is?

Have you ever felt breathless from existing?

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Volcano Dust

Cedars bough down to greet me
squirrles proclaim my passing
the trail is red

Deadfall tests my endurance
sunshine beats my body
the dust is red

Switchbacks rise to defeat me
my breath is short and fast
my fur is red

Summits are for seekers
the reward earned
my volcano is red

Murtle River, Pyramid Mountain Trail
Wells Gray Provincial Park

Sunday, 28 April 2013

A Spring in My Step

Hello, readers. The snow has retreated up into the mountians, leaving the valleys to be re-born. I'm surrounded by breezes bursting buds and clouds billowing birds. The world is waking up and I have a spring in my step.

The humans have traded in showshoes and skis for hiking boots, lawn mowers and chainsaws. We've travelled some or our favourite trails.

The Murtle River past Majeurs Farm is a butterfly haven.

 The bushes on the Flatiron Trail have been pruned by the moose!
The Enderby Cliffs are breezy and cool.