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Showing posts with label Canada. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Canada. Show all posts

Monday, 20 September 2021

Horseshoe Falls

Horseshoe Falls at Niagara Falls

Location: Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada
Address: 6650 Niagara Pkwy.
Date: Dec 2003
Website: www.niagaraparks.com

   Niagara Falls is home to some of the most impressive waterfalls in the world.  The largest waterfall is the Horseshoe Falls.  It is named after the curved shape that was caused by erosion due to the six million cubic feet of water that rush over its edge every minute.  The Niagara River flows from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario and when it passes over the falls it is a sight to be seen.  We like to visit every chance we get in order to see the power of nature up close.

American, Bridal Veil And Horseshoe Falls.

  The Niagara River divides as it approaches the falls and some of the water goes over the smaller American and Bridal Veil falls (left hand side of picture above) which are located in New York, USA.  The Horseshoe Falls takes on the majority of the water as it plunges over the edge and drops almost 200 feet into the depths below.  It is located almost entirely in Ontario, Canada.

US Edge Of The Horseshoe Falls

  Only a small portion of the falls are considered to be within the United States of America.

Buildings Rise Up Beside Niagara Falls.

    The Canadian side of the falls draws huge amounts of tourists all year long.  There are hotels, casinos and viewing towers like the Skylon that let them stay for a longer look from a higher vantage point.

Incline Railway Niagara Falls.

  There are many ways to get down to the falls for a closer look from the hotels above.  One of the most fun is an incline railway.

The Upper Edge Of Niagara Falls.

    The closest you can get to the falls is at Table Rock.  You can get very close to the water as it rushes over the edge.  Just be prepared to get wet as the mist that comes up as the water crashes down below can make it seem like it is always raining.  

Rainbows Over Nigara Falls.

  On a warm summer day the mist can be refreshing.  On a colder fall day it can make you regret your clothing choices.  On any sunny day, the mist and sun can treat you to a variety of rainbows.

Annie Taylor & Her Barrel.

    Through the years many daredevils have wanted to get an even closer look at the falls.  Annie Taylor (above) was the first person to go over the Horseshoe Falls in a barrel.  Annie survived her stunt in 1901.  Since then many others have tried with mixed results.

Rapids At The Top Of The Horseshoe Falls.

   We can't imagine venturing into the rapids of the Niagara River.  

Old Power Plant In Niagara Falls.

    The rapidly flowing water of the Niagara River is diverted to be used for electricity by both the United States and Canada.  Above is an older power station that used to be used for this purpose.  Today over a million people get power by harnessing the force of the water.

Maid Of The Mist.

    While we wouldn't get into the water at the top of the falls, we have ventured into the rapids below.  The Maid Of The Mist boats used to take tourists up as close as they could to the crashing water of the falls.  Today, Hornblower boats have taken over the job.

Niagara Falls From Maid Of The Mist.

   From the boats you can look up at the Horseshoe Falls from a very unique angle.  If you are willing to get completely soaked you can experience the weight of the falls crashing down in front of you.

Journey Behind The Falls.

  If a boat is not your thing, you can also do the Journey Behind The Falls.  Here you can get right down near the bottom of the falls while still staying on dry land.  Well, wet land anyways.   There is also a little hallway with a tiny opening at the end where you are actually behind the falls itself.

The Falls At Night.

    Once the sun goes down, the falls are still entertaining.  In the evenings colourful spotlights bring the falls to life in a whole different way.

Fireworks At Niagara Falls.

       On summer weekends and during special events, fireworks light up the sky over the falls.

Table Rock Frozen In Winter Niagara Falls.

       The falls are still worth seeing in the winter months as the mist rises and freezes wherever it lands.

Niagara Falls In Winter.

      No matter how cold it gets, the falls have never frozen solid.  Even in the coldest winter the water still flows.  There is always something to see at the Horseshoe Falls all year long.  We recommend you visit Niagara Falls at least once in your life.  We try to do it at least once in a year.


Map of Our World
Horseshoe Falls


Post # 303

Friday, 20 August 2021

Clover Hill Park

Primrose The Donkey Clover Hill Park Toronto

Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Address: 50 St. Joseph Street,
Date: June 2021

    Primrose the donkey was born prematurely in England in 2012.  She needed to wear casts on her front legs until they grew stronger.  A nice pair of pink casts were made for her.  Now Toronto, Canada has a statue of Primrose in its Clover Hill Park.

Primrose The Donkey With Pink Casts Toronto

   When we saw some photos of the Primrose sculpture, we couldn't resist to go down and say hello for ourselves.

Rabbits And Snails Clover Hill Park

    Primrose is not alone.  There is a group of wooden sculptures sitting on the other side of the park.  There is a small colony of rabbits and a couple of snails.

Wooden Raccoon Clover Hill Park Toronto

  Not that Toronto needs more of them, but there is also a wooden raccoon sculpture.  We were happy to visit all of Primrose's little friends.

Mushroom Seats In Clover Hill Park Toronto

  To add even a little more magic to the park, there is also a cluster of mushroom seats.  You could even perch up on top of one like the caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland if you wanted.

Primrose Donkey Sculpture Toronto

  The real Primrose is all grown up now and no longer needs her casts.  If you want to see her at her cutest you can visit Clover Hill Park on Bay Street where she will forever remain that little preemie donkey.


Map of Our World
Primrose , Clover Hill Park

Post # 302

Tuesday, 20 April 2021

Assiniboine Park

Assiniboine Park Zoo Entrance

Location: Assiniboine Park, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Address: 55 Pavilion Crescent
Date: Oct 2014
Website: www.assiniboinepark.ca

 Assiniboine Park in Winnipeg, Manitoba is more than just a park.  We were in Winnpeg as part of a trip to Churchill, Manitoba to see polar bears. We were in Assiniboine Park to see more polar bears and the other annimals of the Assiniboine Zoo.  Before we even reached the zoo, we soon realized that there were lots of animals to see throughout the park.
 
The Pavilion in Assiniboine Park

    The Pavilion is a beautiful building that operates as an art gallery. Admission was free and we went inside to take a look.  We knew already that the building contained one of the world's most famous bears.
 
Pooh Gallery Assiniboine Park

    The second floor has a gallery dedicated to Winnie the Pooh.  Winnie the Pooh was a black bear cub from Ontario who was rescued by a Canadian Lieutenant called Harry Colebourn.  The bear was named Winnie after Harry's hometown of Winnipeg.

Statue of Winnie The Bear and Harry Colebourn

    Just outside of The Pavilion is a statue dedicated to Winnie and Harry.  Winnie was eventually taken to England and lived in the London Zoo.


Winnie The Pooh dolls Assiniboine Park

  A.A. Milne wrote the famous books about Winnie the Pooh. The stories included his own son, Christopher Robin and his dolls.  The bear doll was named Winnie after visiting the real Winnie at her home in the London Zoo.  Above are some early Winnie the Pooh dolls.

Assiniboine Park Gallery Art
 
    The other floors of the gallery contained art from other artists from Manitoba and highlighted the culture and history of the province.
 
Assiniboine Park Polar Bear Art

    There were more bears of course, such as this polar bear that was part of a collection of nature paintings.  This painting reminded us that we were still headed to the zoo to see some real bears.
 
Serpent Bush Assiniboine Park

  Next to The Pavilion is a Nature Playground.  We found more creatures here all made of wood and plants.  There was a serpent.   

Yak Bush Assiniboine Park
Sheep Bush Assiniboine Park

    There was also a yak bush and a sheep with big googly eyes.

Winnie The Pooh Assiniboine Park

    Just in case you had not yet had your fill of bears or Winnie the Pooh, there was a bear shaped bush.  We had not yet had enough so we headed over to spend the day at the zoo.

Red River Ox Cart Assiniboine Park

   After a long but enjoyable day at the zoo we headed back to our hotel.  As we left the park we saw one last animal.  A giant ox sculpture sits at the entrance to the park.  This ox is pulling a Red River cart which was used for early trade, travel and work in Winnipeg.  One last history lesson that didn't involve bears before we ended our day.


Map of Our World
Nature Playground , Red River Ox Cart 
The Pavilion At Assiniboine Park 

Post # 298

Saturday, 20 March 2021

Winter in Algonquin

 Spruce Bog Trail In Winter.

Location: Algonquin Park, Ontario, Canada
Address: Spruce Bog Trail
Date: Feb 2019
Website: www.algonquinpark.on.ca

 While Algonquin Park is known for moose and bears and wolves, in the winter it is all about the little guys.  We visited the Ontario provincial park with a goal to try and see one little critter who is quite active during the winter months.  We were on the trail of the American Pine Marten.

 Chickadee At Algonquin Park in Winter.

  We started our search on the Spruce Bog Trail as there had been reports of marten spotted here. A chickadee welcomed us as we started the trail. Things looked promising.

 Animal Tracks in Algonquin Park in Winter.

  We came across some small tracks in the snow.  Things looked even more promising.  We are not the best at identifying tracks, but we believe we have marten tracks in the photo above.

Grey Jay in Algonquin Park.

    Next we were greeted by one of the guardians of the forest. A grey jay flew to a nearby branch to watch us on our hike. "Can you show us where the pine marten are hiding?" we asked. The grey jay flew from branch to branch in front of us leading the way. After a short time he flew off. We didn't come across any marten, but we always enjoy a visit from a curious jay all fluffed up for winter.   

A Snow Fly Walking In Winter Algonquin Park.

  As we were scanning the snow looking for marten tracks we noticed something unexpected walking across the snow.  It was a snow fly.  We never expected to see insects during the winter months, but that is when the adult snow flies live.  They have glycerol inside them to prevent their bodies from freezing in the cold weather.

Pine Marten Fur in Algonquin Park.

  When we returned to the parking lot after our hike, we learned that we had just missed a pair of pine marten running around in the snow at the edge of the lot.  While we had been out on the trail they had been putting on a show.  We hung around for a little while just in case. Still we had no luck and decided to see what was going on at the Visitor Centre.

Porcupine In Tree At Algonquin Park.

    At the back of the Algonquin Visitor Centre is a large viewing area that looks out across the valley below.  We noticed a group of photographers interested in something in the distance.  In the center of the photo above is a porcupine at the top of a tree (trust us).  Unfortunately, there are not too many porcupine in Algonquin.  They are preyed upon by the slightly larger relative of the pine marten, the fisher.  Fishers themselves are a rare sighting in the park.
 
Common Redpoll in Algonquin Park.

  There is also a bird feeder behind the Visitor Centre which sometimes attracts martens looking to eat some of the bird seeds. It never disappoints as various birds come and go.  A common redpoll (above) is one frequent winter visitor. 

Pine Grosbeak.
Pine Grosbeak.

    Another bird we had never seen before is the pine grosbeak.  The male is the brighter red coloured one.   We had seen a lot of different things today, but it was still the martens we had our sights on.

Mew Lake Campground.

  We had one last place we wanted to try in our search for the marten.  We headed to Mew Lake Campground where there is an old airfield and of course camping.

A Pine Marten in Algonquin Park.

   No sooner had we pulled the car into a parking spot when we spotted something in the rear-view mirror.  At last!  A pine marten had just climbed over the snow bank and onto the road.

A Pine Marten in Algonquin Park.

   We stepped out of the car and the marten ran back into the woods.  We stayed still and it wasn't long until the marten showed itself again and continued searching through the snow.  A marten is about the size of a small cat but with much shorter legs.

Snow Fleas in Algonquin Park.

   After spending some time with our new forest friend, we started to head back to our car.  We noticed something that looked like pepper in the snow.  Upon closer examination we realized it was snow fleas or springtails.  Another winter insect.  As we watched them we could see the fleas hop off the snow and disappear into the air. 

  Suddenly, something flew near us and at first we thought it was a moth.  We had seen enough insects that day, why not a snow moth?  Something else flew towards us and we realized it was a group of chickadees.  They took turns swooping in and landing or almost landing on us.  They must have thought we wanted to feed them.  As they flew closer to our faces, we decided to take cover and call it a day.   It truly was a day full of small creatures, but the marten was definitely the cutest animal in the forest that day, or some might say any day.


Map of Our World
Algonquin Park (Mew Lake) , Algonquin Park (Spruce Bog)

Post # 297