Strathcona Wilderness Institute

24 Days of Summer…

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Another spectacular day at the Wilderness Centre – the weather has now been warm & sunny for 24 days straight, with another week of the same predicted. The snow is melting fast – reports from yesterday are that the east trail to Croteau Lake & beyond has just a few snow patches, though the west trail near the Ranger cabin has more snow. The traverse from the old Forbidden ski lodge across the Plateau is also reported to be mostly negotiable with some care required to find the proper trail to the campsite near Douglas/McKenzie Lakes. Check the links on the Strathcona Wilderness Institute website for reference maps.

Water strider (Gerris sp.)

A great hike to Croteau Lake yesterday as well as a fascinating Nature Walk on Insects, thanks to the volunteer guides. Among the valuable info learned on the nature walk: a sprig of artemisia is an effective bug repellant! Donations for the guided outings are greatly appreciated & go towards ongoing operations of the Wilderness Centre.

Birds over the weekend included the ever-present hermit thrush, winter wren, robin, raven, chickadee, chipping sparrow, junco, pine siskin, nuthatch, towhee, Steller’s jay, gray jay, and the appearance of another rufous hummingbird hovering outside the door of the Centre.
Juvenile dark-eyed junco

Sunday morning we saw a doe & fawn at the roadside on top of the hill – a reminder of why it is important to keep your dog a leash – not only to protect the wildlife but to keep your pet safe! (in case you haven’t seen recent Youtube videos of deer protecting their fawns…) Also a reminder that dogs are not allowed to swim in the lakes as they are drinking water sources for campers & hikers.

Visitors yesterday included a group of trail runners, and over 30 cadets & staff from HMCS Quadra, who looked like they had a great hike! There were also visitors from the US, Switzerland, Australia, Serbia & France. Luckily, Linda who volunteered on Sunday is fluent in French! which was appreciated by many of the visitors.

White rhododendron (Rhododendron albiflorum)

Bunchberry (Cornus canadensis)

Mountain arnica (Arnica latifolia)

Subalpine daisy (Erigeron peregrinus)

And finally, a couple more lost & found items:

Lost:
child’s hand-made moccasins
white ball cap

Found:
gray t-shirt

Please contact me if you find missing items, or drop them off in the mailbox at the Wilderness Centre. Thanks to the person who returned the pink dog-collar – soon to be re-united with the owner.

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