Gravel and dust – a favourite road

Gravel and dust - a favourite road

Two mornings ago, on 30 June 2019, I woke up earlier than usual. Once I was on my computer, I checked the weather forecast and saw raindrop icons in the forecast for the next week, but the 30th was for sun. I knew what I had to do! Luckily, I had a tank full of gas, so I grabbed both cameras and a snack or two, and headed out the door. I must be the only person who hadn’t been to Kananaskis recently and taken photos of the tiny Pikas (Rock Rabbits), and that was my destination.

This was a long weekend for Canada Day, and my plan had been to keep off the roads, as I was sure they would be busy, making it more difficult to stop whenever I wanted, to take a photo or two. However, when I saw the weather forecast, it changed my mind. Sunshine, blue sky with clouds, made it a perfect day to be out – I’m sure you agreed, Bonnie : )

A day in Kananaskis is always great, but sometimes ‘great’ turns out to be fantastic! Can’t believe how lucky I was, not just in the mountains, but on the journey there and, at the end of the day, calling in at my ‘usual’ area closer to home.

I suspect the Pika is most people’s favourite – around 6 inches long and almost impossible to see against the mountainside of broken rocks that are the same colour as the Pika’s fur. Starting to believe that maybe I was going to be out of luck, the first one appeared, racing in and out and over and between the endless, sharp rocks. Take your eyes off the animal and you stand a good chance of not being able to find it again. Then a second one appeared, a baby. It perched itself on top of a rock and simply stayed there for a few minutes. Several of my photos show the eyes closing slightly. However, eventually it did move, and off it went. When it appeared not too far away, I caught sight of it and thought at first it was a mouse, ha. So tiny!

While I was searching for a Pika, a herd of Bighorn Sheep had come down the massive mountain side and, as they usually do, gathered right in the middle of the road to lick salt left by vehicles. After quite a time, there was an almighty BOOM that startled me and a handful of others. We hadn’t noticed a Park’s truck arrive, armed with ‘bangers’ to make the Sheep move from the road. Once the Park’s person had left, the Sheep returned to the road. There were several young ones along with the females.

It will take me ages to go through my photos, especially having to combine two cameras, but lots of images can wait till winter. More important, to me, is to continue editing and posting the remaining Texas photos, if/when I get time to do so.

Posted by annkelliott on 2019-07-02 21:08:25

Tagged: , Alberta , Canada , SW of Calgary , on way to Kananaskis , landscape , scenery , hills , rolling hills , mountains , foothills , field , farm , road , backroad , gravel , undulating , trees , outdoor , summer , 30 June 2019 , Canon , SX60 , Canon SX60 , Powershot , annkelliott , Anne Elliott