Sunday, January 6, 2008

12th Night and the Cable Bay Trail

Today Wife suggested we have a late brunch type breakfast and a good long walk to burn it off. I was happy with this. January 6th for my family is traditionally 12th Night, when all Christmas celebrations should cease and all the decorations should be taken down. It is also the day I generally begin the month long detox that is January to ensure I am in good condition for the rest of the year. No sweeties, little booze, and plenty of healthy exercise to trim the post Christmas bulge back to size. I like a good walk, it clears the mind and lets you think.

We set out and decided to walk to the head of the Cable Bay trail, which is only a couple of miles from our little corner of British Columbia. Dog fretted on the lead as he always does, and was a total pain until I let him loose when we were safely clear of the road.

On the way we got a good view of the local nesting pairs of Bald Eagles wheeling overhead. Tried to take a photo, but our four year old digital camera wasn't playing ball, so, wildlife photo opportunity failure number one. I was mildly cheesed off, but what the hell, there's always tomorrow morning, which the weatherman says will be sunny like today.

The paths were full of friendly fellow hikers, almost all with a friendly word, which we responded in kind to. Lots of fellow dog walkers, and no sign of the local Black Bear, who was spotted frequenting the woods during fall. All in all, a nice easy walk, if a little steep in places. We even took the Joan Park section of the walk along the waters edge to the throat of the Dodds Narows. En route we saw the first of the migrating sea lions pushing up current against the tide. See below for an empty piece of sea where one had just dived for cover.
Other hikers told us that there was a whale in the channel, but I reckon it was one of the Sea Lions blowing. If you blink, it's very easy to mistake one from the other, although Humpback Whales are not unknown in these waters.

We walked all the way down to Joan point at the top of Dodds Narrows to watch the choppy tide race through the narrows and promptly lost Dog, who had gotten bored and wandered off. He finally responded to my calls and sat down at my side while Wife caught up with us, his customary "Sorry Boss" look on his face. She wagged a finger at him for worrying us to death before we set off home.

Going up the trail head is harder than the walk to the waters edge because it is rather steep in a couple of places, and our home made walking staves were put through their paces. The paths do have the odd skid pan, and a trip or fall would get either or both of us in trouble, despite serious travel insurance cover. By the time we reached the inland end of the trail again, we were tired and looking for a nice hot cup of tea, which according to that sage of sages, Douglas Adams, is the cure for all ills and civilisations troubles. "Whose idea was this?" I asked when Wife complained that we still had a couple of miles to go. "Mine." She replied, unabashed, but slightly puffed out.

Half an hour later we were home, and I was stripped off in the shower washing both myself and Dog, lest either of us be cast into the outer darkness for tramping mud all through the house. Dog was so knackered he lay down in the shower and let me wash him thoroughly without fussing like he normally does. He acted up a bit when I turned Wife's hair dryer on him, but since this afternoon has been flaked out with Wife while watching 'House' on the DVD player. As soon as this is posted, it's a large Jamesons for me and a nice early night. So long as Wife isn't feeling randy, I should sleep the sleep of the blessed.

Busy week ahead.