Sunday, November 26, 2006

Some of our neighbours on the road

Today we went out for the first time in a week, to travel into town to get a few groceries and attend our little church, about 100Km or 60miles distance away. It was -22C with the wind chill making it feel like -30C.

The big lake has not frozen over as yet and a mist was rising from it in wisps, because the water is still warmer than the land. I would love to see the moment in time when it freezes, the still water suddenly turning to ice. I think it would be rather wonderful to see. Apparently the Artic ocean does the same thing.

As we ventured down the road we saw several ravens sitting in a single tree, their feathers all ruffled up to conserve body heat. They take turns in flying up and down the road looking for road kill. I guess it conserves energy for one at a time to look for a kill. Ravens are considered to be more intelligent than dogs, I would imagine it is a different kind of intelligence though.

As we rounded the corner we saw four large moose browsing on the willows that border the road, and another moose, who was firmly planted in the middle of the road, staring right at us. We had been told never to hoot a horn at moose, as they take quite severe exception to your rudeness and are likely to attack your vehicle. So we crept closer and eventually it obliged by walking slowly to the side of the road.

Travelling on, we passed the small lake in which we like to do most of our trout fishing. It was frozen solid, probably a foot of ice by now, and strong enough for moose to walk across. The ice fishermen will be out there soon. They drill a hole and sit over the hole and wait. Sometimes they even light a fire out there on the ice.

Further along we drove past the beaver pond that had been built, in the summer, across a small stream that runs near the road. The beavers will be hunkered down in their lodge, in relative warmth, only venturing out under the ice to their refrigerated larder for a snack of willow which they had stored away in fall.

Finally, we arrived at junction of the highway, the sun was so strong on the snow I had to put on sunglasses. While in town we indulged in Kentucky Fried, sharing some with Annie, our dog, who came on the trip with us. In all 100km we saw five moose and two cars, my husband said, "You know you are in the wild when you see more moose than vehicles".

So now we are home again, and I am writing this while my husband has the TV on and he is snoring in front of it.

1 comment:

Jeni said...

Your descriptions of the scenery (woods, water and wildlife) along your drive sounds really beautiful. You paint a very good picture with your words.