Saturday, October 21, 2017

The Polar Prince

The Polar Prince arrived yesterday afternoon, as forewarned in the Powell River Peak. I'm reasonably sure
a lot of people will make the same mistake I did, but this is not a Coast Guard boat. She used to be though,
and till 1986 she was the CCGS Sir Humphrey Gilbert. The government retired her, and then sold her to a
private concern in 2001. In any case, it isn't often we see an ice breaker in our local waters. Thankfully not
required. For reference, that's our local CCGS Cape Caution tied up alongside, and she's 47 feet long,
so the Polar Prince is a fair size. She left at 11pm, on her way to Nanoose Bay.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Ceramics - III

The two previous posts in this series have been of functional ware, made for everyday use. These pieces by
Gordon Hutchens of Denman Island are decorative ware, or art pottery. They are of crystal-glazed
porcelain, meaning they were fired at high temperatures. Not large, the vase on the left is 7" tall.
Hutchens is very well known, both as potter and teacher, and is currently in charge of the
extensive ceramics program at North Island College in Courtenay, BC.

And if one doesn't recognize a
Hutchens vase by looks, they all carry his signature on the bottom.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Saturday's Market

Saturday was the end of yet another season for the outdoor Farmer's Market and we'll
mark it with a splash of floral colour, photos taken at Marisa Mastrodonato's
flower bouquet market booth, on the day.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

In The News

In recent news there was an article that said yesterday was the last day of business for the Landmark Hotel on
Vancouver's Robson St. The hotel has been a Vancouver icon for 44 years, but it's coming down to make way for 2 
condo towers. These are archive photos, from my last stay, almost 6 years ago to the day, and while
they weren't taken from the top - 42 stories - if I remember correctly this is the view
down and across Robson St from the 12th floor as the sun set on the city.

I definitely won't be able to afford one of those new condos when built, but then I haven't been able to
afford recent rates at the Landmark either.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Canoe Carving

The Hɛhɛwšɩn (the way forward) Reconciliation Canoe Carving project is underway at Willingdon Beach,
and over the next 5-6 weeks a very large log will be turned into a very nice cedar canoe. Here carver
Sherman Pallen takes shavings off what will be the prow.

The carvers will be at the site from 8-4:30, Monday through Friday, and anyone interested is invited
to go down and lend a hand. We will be revisiting from time to time, as progress continues.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Black Oystercatchers

I've featured these before, but as they're one of my favourite shorebirds, and there's a number of them along
the Seawalk the last little while, these are here again. "Oystercatcher" is actually a misnomer as
they don't eat oysters, though they do have a fondness for clams.

The top bird is a juvenile, it doesn't have the full bright orbital eye ring that this adult has, and also
the beak is a duller orange.

Thursday, September 28, 2017


Leucism : a condition in which there is partial loss of pigmentation in an animal resulting in white,
pale, or patchy coloration of the skin, hair, feathers, scales or cuticle, but not the eyes. (Wikipedia)
As in this Northwestern Crow. 

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Ceramics - II

Teapot, 2 cups, a creamer and a sugar bowl by Scott and Garnet Beardsley of Beardsley Pottery
on Denman Island. Their studio has long been a stop on the Denman Island Pottery Studio
Tour held every year in May.
This is the second in an ongoing series featuring ceramics by potters of the west coast.

Monday, September 25, 2017


A photographer capturing a typical late September day at Willingdon Beach - cool, windy, and threatening rain.
These are are archive photos, but the September weather never changes.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Brown-Eyed Susans

Brown-eyed Susans.

Lots of Brown-eyed Susans.

Lots and lots of Brown-eyed Susans.
At the Cranberry Cemetery. 

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Friday, September 22, 2017

End Of The Day?

Tying up his dozer boat and heading to shore in those orange Stihl caulk boots. Though I
have never understood why "caulk" is pronounced "cork", or is it
that "cork" is spelled "caulk"?

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Seeing Double

A domestic bird, somebody on Cranberry Lake must be rearing Muscovy Ducks, a handful
of these were floating around on the lake at the bottom of Drake St., yesterday.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Going Up

Past mid-September and we still have tourists checking out our views. These out-of-towners
were going up the trail to Valentine Mountain, to take in the view at the top.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017


A tea set by Cranberry Pottery. It's been some years now since the potters closed shop
and retired, but after 35 or so years there is an awful lot of their work around our city.

This is the first post in what will be an ongoing series featuring west coast potters and their work for
those coming days when the weather keeps me home - or I'm otherwise indisposed - and need a blog post.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Looking Back

As the weather isn't cooperating I've dug into the archives.
These are photos taken at the outdoor Market/Fall Fair over the last few years.
Above, from 2009, sourdough breads.

Preserves at the 2011 Fall Fair.

This floral arrangement greeted visitors at the entrance to the Fair in 2013.

Chicken-in-a-Basket, taken at the 2014 Fall Fair.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Saturday, September 16, 2017


We're back, with the first photo taken in 4 weeks. This Dahlia is one of the few blooms still
to be found in the Townsite's Triangle Garden.
Summer is gone for another year.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017


I am taking an enforced  medical leave of absence, hopefully not too long, but in any case, I shall return.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Rocky Mountain Raspberry

I do this once every summer. Take the photo that is, my waistline is ample testimony
to the fact that I eat one of these rather too often. My favourite flavour.
At Putters, of course.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Arts Alive In The Park

Arts Alive in the Park was on once again this past Saturday and Sunday. It's a yearly event where "local artists
display their work and present it for sale". And there was a good bit of it to be had.
This was the 16th - or maybe the 17th, they're not quite sure - year of this event at Willingdon Beach.

 Painting, ceramics, textiles, jewellery, photography and much more, was on display.

Gerry Chabot, photographer, and his prints.

 The artist at work.

Musical entertainment performed on the stage ...

.. and Romeo the Fry Guy was one of several food vendors on site. Lots of people, lots of things
to run an eye over, and hopefully lots of wallets got cracked.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Not For Me

Have I ever been up in an ultralight? No
Have I ever had the opportunity? No
Given the chance, would I go? No

This is a Beaver RX550, and as you can see, a 2-seater amphibian. Locally-owned since 2010, though I haven't
spotted it before. It flew by Wednesday. And as noted elsewhere, maybe a bit too light and open for me.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

The Sea Imp XI

For someone like me, who takes a lot of tugboat photos, it's a pleasure to see a new boat in our local waters.
The Sea Imp XI was launched May 27th, so at less than 3 months old she's barely wet her keel.

She was built in Maple Ridge, at the Sylte Shipyard, for Catherwood Towing. They've apparently put her
on the City Transfer drop-trailer barge run, as I've seen her here the last week or 2, with these the first photos
as she leaves the Mill harbour.  A fine looking boat.


Thursday, August 17, 2017

Diving The Malahat

The Malahat is the wreck of a very well know 5-masted schooner that rests in the water just off the breakwater at the Mill
logpond, and she has become a popular dive site. (There's info and a photo at her Wikipedia entry.)

These two young men were preparing to make the dive when I caught them on Tuesday.

As a dive site the Malahat gets great reviews - while there may not be a lot of her left, apparently
the marine life around her is something to see.

Not only is he carrying all that heavy gear, he's carrying an extra 42 pounds of lead weight to
counteract the buoyancy of all that gear once he's in the water. 

One last check on that Nikon in it's waterproof housing.

And off they go to check out the Malahat.