On and Over the Hills

"Go as far as you can see; when you get there you'll be able to see farther." ~ Thomas Carlyle

Four Seasons in ‘The Hills’

Calendar dates that define the seasons don’t mean a lot here. It’s still winter on March 21st and except for the odd hot day it seldom feels or even really looks like summer until July. We have had dustings of snow in every month of the year and kids must almost always cover their Halloween costumers with their parkas and snowboots.

Contrary to local complaints, we do have four (albeit uneven) seasons on this hill. At 54° latitude, south of accepted ‘northern’ land, the altitude of 1200 metres encourages boreal vegetation to flourish and sends even year-round wildlife residents of lower elevations packing for the winter. To mark the turning of the calendar year and to celebrate the lengthening of the days I’ve made a collection of pictures showing the four seasons in the Swan Hills. I hope you enjoy them.

I wish all who stop here health and contentment in 2011.

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18 comments on “Four Seasons in ‘The Hills’

  1. pixilated2
    December 31, 2010

    Were those May Apples in the second photo or sweet woodruff perhaps? We have May Apples here and I find them interesting. I love your photo of the rocks on the ridge and how the wind has polished them clean of the surrounding snow! As always, your work takes my breath away!

    I’m so glad I found you out there in the infinite realm of the internet. I will enjoy following you too in the year ahead. I am learning so much from your work and writing.

    Happy New Year!
    Lynda

    • missusk76
      December 31, 2010

      Hi Lynda,

      Those plants just bursting through the leaf litter are Galium triflorum or Sweet-scented Bedstraw, so called because when dry the leaves are redolent of a vanilla-like fragrance and were often used to stuff homesteaders’ mattresses. It is a relative of Sweet woodruff, which is not native to North America.

      The rocks on the ridge are unfortunately not naturally placed. A pine forest covered this ridge a few short years ago. First it was logged, revealing the view and then this berm was built to contain any potential spills when the ground was scraped and flattened for a new oil lease. “Reforestation” is more evident in a previous image where lodgepole pine saplings that have been planted for future harvest by the lumber industry.

      I too am very glad to have found you! I have been very pleasantly suprised in the few short months since I started this blog to have found kind and kindred spirits here. I love the sharing of place and experience and, although often frustrated, I am thankful that my ‘real’ life is demanding enough that I can’t submit to the temptation to live vicariously through this rich and gratifying medium.

      All the best in the New Year to you.
      Cindy

  2. Bob Zeller
    December 31, 2010

    Hi Cindy,

    My, my, what a wonderful collection you have put together here. I will be looking forward to more of you great writings and photographs in the coming year. May you have a healthy and prosperous 2011.

    Bob

    • missusk76
      January 1, 2011

      Thank you very much, Bob, the admiration is mutual. Just wish I didn’t have to go back to work so I could spend more time perusing blogs at my leisure. It’s a good think I like my job too.

      • Bob Zeller
        January 1, 2011

        I know what you mean, Cindy. I’ve been sitting here for the past hour just looking at other blogs, and if it means anything, yours is one of my favorites. I never thought I’d get hooked like this. 🙂

  3. photobyholly
    December 31, 2010

    What a beautiful selection of photos!! Have a wonderful New Year!! 😀

    • missusk76
      January 1, 2011

      Thank you, Holly and I wish the same for you.

  4. Michael Mills
    December 31, 2010

    Hi Cindy
    Thanks for the beautiful slide show here, your beautiful photography on Flicker, but also thanks for your kind comments on mine over the past year.

    I’m looking forward to seeing more & wish you a happy & productive 2011.
    Mike

    • missusk76
      January 1, 2011

      You always pick me up with your photos and your great sense of humour. I am grateful that we’ve got to know each other and also look forward to a new year to continue the fun. Thanks for stopping in, Mike.

  5. Nikon S3000 Review
    January 1, 2011

    Seriously you have a great collection. Some amazingly stunning shots that you have here. I look forward to seeing more from you.

  6. photographyfree4all
    January 1, 2011

    Happy New year, Cindy! I love these shots! Most people say we have no seasons here – but, we really do. They’re just different than in places where extreme changes occur! Great job!

    • missusk76
      January 1, 2011

      I’ve heard it said the our seasons go like this…winter, winter, winter, winter, winter, spr, summ, aut, winter, winter, winter, winter. 🙂 In spite of the hassles of winter, I do enjoy it and there is nothing like the feeling of elation you get at the first signs of spring after a long, cold winter. I’ve tried life without that experience and I prefer it this way. (Don’t you think that’s a good atitude to have when you really have no choice?) 🙂

      Thank you for stopping in and for your compliment. Happy New Year to you as well.

  7. themichaellamcollection
    January 3, 2011

    Love those images Cindy!
    Looking forward to your posts this year! I made up mind that I WILL make the time for what I like this year 🙂

    • missusk76
      January 9, 2011

      Thank you Michael. Making time for what I like is not the problem so much for me (although it would be handy not to have a full-time job), it’s more paring down to what I like the most! 🙂

  8. farmhouse stories
    January 4, 2011

    What incredible images, Cindy! There is one that looks so much like a Group of Seven painting to me. A beautiful tribute to your seasons. Thank you for sharing these!

    • missusk76
      January 9, 2011

      That’s quite a compliment, Cait! Thank you very much. If I could succeed with conveying the feeling of place that any of those painters achieved, I would be thrilled. I especially admire Lismer’s ability to evoke mood.

  9. flandrumhill
    January 10, 2011

    What a beautiful name: Swan Hills. All of your images are lovely but the ones with snow are especially so, probably because you’ve managed to capture the blue and periwinkle colored shadows.

  10. B.Held
    January 12, 2011

    Just fantastic work! Wow!

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This entry was posted on December 31, 2010 by in The Journey and tagged , , , , , , , , .
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