Tuesday, 22 December 2015

A View from the Road: Fall in the Peace Country (It’s all about colour)

In late August, sunrise returns to my drive.  As I drive west, in the rear view mirror I get to see the glorious reds/oranges/pinks across the sky as the sun reflects off any wisp of cloud.  Until early November, when I lose the sunrise and begin to drive in the dark, fall is happening in all the colours imaginable.

Not bad for a little point and shoot camera.
The only problem is to figure out how get the camera to see
the colours I do - the sky was black.

The leaves, if we are lucky and the frost happens just right, give a few days of incredible colour to mirror the sunrises.  My drive goes from green to red-orange-yellow-gold made even more lovely by the shadows cast by the sun which is no longer directly overhead.

A bit of a cheat.  This was on the road to Red Earth.  The trees
are Larch (or Tamarack) and although they are
coniferous, they turn colour in the fall.  

The few days of fog that we have in fall are enough to be exciting, but not so often that I get irritated at yet one more day where you can’t see past the hood of the car.  Usually the fog blankets the Peace River valley while it is clear and sunny on top.  Where I took these photos, the river valley is about 20 km away and the river valley falls below that.  It would be tempting to think that what you are seeing is steep hills rising from the farm land.  

This year I was wondering if the leaves along the drive were going to turn colour or just quietly fall off the trees.  One morning I got up to a thick fog with brightly coloured almost fluorescent trees dominating the landscape.  I couldn’t resist stopping to take a series of photos.
These beautiful trees stand just inside the fence
between the pool and the library.

While standing on the edge of the road, this bus passed me.
Its hard to believe that this is in the middle of town
not miles from nowhere.

 As I was driving by, there were two deer on the side of the road.  They waited for me to pass, and as I stopped to take their picture, one carefully crossed to the other side.  I wondered if it was the thick fog that let this fellow feel safe enough to just stand and watch me from a few feet away

What I found fascinating on my travels this year, because I was looking mindfully at what was passing by, is that when the leaves fall there are abandoned homesteads in the trees which I had never noticed before.  Each one has a story that I can only guess at as I am glorying in the textures and colours.

Of course, the obvious thing that is happening in fall is the harvest.  Interesting equipment in the fields, or on the roads.  In the morning, parked in the fields where they finished last night waiting for the dew to lift.  Late into the night the lights of combines and grain trucks rushing to get the harvest in before the first snowfall.

Combine coffee party

This fall there were a number of exciting sky events.  My little camera did a pretty good job of taking photos of both the super moon and the triple conjunction a few weeks later.  The nice thing about fall is that there is enough dark to see stars and moons at a sensible time but it is also warm enough to make the idea of being outside enjoyable.

The morning after the super moon, it was setting in the west.
Daylight changed the colours and meant I didn't use a tripod.

After an incredibly dry summer, of course the rain came during harvest.
Quite a fun photo through my front window.

Triple conjunction from our front driveway.  I backed the
car out of the carport and set up camera on tripod on the roof.

These photos were taken on one of the last truly fall days.  I brought the pots from the front step in early October because they looked terribly bedraggled and planned on throwing them out on the next weekend.  To my surprise, they perked up and even started flowering again – hey, they were tough northern flowers and a bit of frost and snow wasn’t going to get them down.

Fall is my favorite season.  It’s a short and spectacular treat before we settle into the long winter night.

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