Thursday, September 3, 2009

Conservation area at St Marys Rapids

Now about that trek…….. if we’d planned this to be a trek, I would have been better prepared but noooooooo, didn’t do that ! We did take a bottle of water, I don’t go far without one so that was good. I always have my camera, so that was also good. It is all about the shoes or sandals in this case. It would have been a good idea to wear good walking shoes. We were only going for a short walk but once we saw the locks we thought we would just go a bit further to see the St. Marys Rapids, not realizing how far it was.

We started toward the river, passing many people also using the paths. There were joggers, walkers and just those enjoying the trails. There were nature trails going in a few different directions but not knowing exactly where we were going, we just followed the path that looked like it would take us to the water, not the path that headed way over to the International Bridge in the distance.

Creek off of St Marys River
Whitefish Island was an encampment for native people of the area. It was declared a site of National Historic significance and is a wonderful place to enjoy the natural marshlands of the area. We saw many ducks who are obviously very used to people feeding them. As we stopped aside a pretty pond they were gathered in, some swam towards us. They had no fear. Another spot we stopped at to watch, we saw a mother duck and her babies gobbling up the cereal that had been thrown into the water for them.

Mallard landing on the pond

Just a note on that, it is not a good idea to feed the ducks white bread, sugar cereals or any junk food. If you are going to feed the ducks then bring healthy leftovers. Cereals and bread with lots of grains are ok, as long as you break the bread into small pieces. If this is a favorite pastime for you, pick up some duck feed and give them that.

The Blue Heron

As we walked along the path getting closer to the open river, Keith and his eagle eyes saw a blue heron across the marshland. All I could see was a branch protruding out of the water, but I will take the picture, just in case. We watched for several minutes and there was no movement so I was pretty sure it was not a heron. In the meantime I am taking pictures of the branch….. then the branch moved !! It really was a heron and he was thinking we couldn’t see him…. he was half right. I did get some great shots as I had zoomed the lens, but sure didn’t know it until I got the pictures downloaded !

                                                             A very large beaver dam
There was an abundance of beaver dams on our walk. They were everywhere, which shows that they must have a big population of them. I was hoping we’d see a beaver but weren’t fortunate enough for that. We did see the remnants of a worksite, we may have scared the beaver away.

The beaver's been busy working

Right alongside the path was a mess of branches and the evidence of his work by the style of cuttings. You could see where he dragged other branches across the path and down to the waters edge. They are timid so the chances are not good that we’d see one but was disappointed when we didn’t.

Under the International Bridge

And the International Bridge way over there from our starting point? We were standing underneath it before we turned around and headed back. But I must admit, the sights we got to see on our trek were worth a few blisters.

Visit my Kamloops blog to see more birds who were visiting the Tranquille Wildlife Management Area .


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