Sunday, March 14, 2010

The Red Deer river canyon

Hey-O to everyone out there in Blog land! It's time I introduce myself and finally blog. I am Avery, one of the interpreters for W.E.E.S. I have had the pleasure of working with them for almost a year now and that's how long it takes me to Blog I guess!

The Red Deer river canyon is an often overlooked asset to our landscape! Formed millions of years ago, this amazing canyon gives us a direct look into the past. The different rock and silt layers are clearly visible in parts and show us what is really under our feet! (all the way down to the Paleocene era Paskapoo sandstone, our bedrock)

The canyon is also home to diverse wildlife like Eagles, Osprey, White Tail and Mule deer as well as coyotes and other scavengers! Both winter and summer the canyon offers amazing vistas (and learning opportunities).

Accessing the canyon can be difficult as trails are hard to come-by and the walls can get quite steep, but there is a better way to see it than by foot:

By Raft!

W.E.E.S will once again be offering raft trips down the Red Deer river during the summer months and would love to accommodate you and/or your group! Float down the river and enjoy the sights and sounds with an Interpreter guiding the way. Please call for more information and prices!

In other wonderful nature news, spring once again provided a surprise to the Rocky Mountains in the last few days, over 60cms dropped all over Rockies and Columbia's with more in the forecast! With this exciting news it is certain that many will head out to enjoy this new snow by ski's, snowshoes and snow-machine but please update yourself with the Avalanche conditions! It is very dangerous with all this new storm snow so please check the Canadian Avalanche Association page for condition updates before you head out into the uncontrolled areas.

Adventure Safely!


Monday, March 08, 2010

Take a Survey - Help us Out

The Nature Centre staff is looking to overhaul the programs offered both onsite at the Nature Centre and offsite in th community and surrounding area.

Please take a moment to hit the link and fill out our on-line survey. It will take less than 10 minutes.


Monday, March 01, 2010

First Critters of Spring

As I was leaving work on Friday I saw a sight that would warm the heart of all those who yearn for the end of winter: A Richardson's Ground Squirrel (commonly and mistakenly known around here as gophers) ran across the parking lot.

Ground squirrels spend most of their year underground hibernating. They pop up in early spring to mate, fight with each other (males), rear their young and store food. This is a reasonably short, yet exceptionally busy period of time. By the end of July the adults will be heading back underground. The juveniles will remain active until around the end of September.

While we spent the first part of February dicussing the pros and cons of the various groundhogs seeing, or not seeing, their shadows the humble Richardson's Ground Squirrel may give us a better indication of when our spring may arrive and what it may look like.

Also, and I think I tweeted this on our Twitter Feed, while enjoying a brisk, late-winter snowshoe with my family on Sunday morning, my daughter said "Listen Daddy, geese." Sure enough, I looked up to see the first V of returning geese this year. Spring must be on its way.