Saturday, July 4, 2009

B.C. Trip Part VI

June 17

Caffeine & Cycling Fix

Our morning at the Tara Shanti started as usual, birding and breakfast. Once again our view of the Kokanee Glacier from the deck was amazing. A new bird for the provincial list was observed this morning, an "Audubon's Warbler", the western version of the Yellow-rumped Warbler. A prettier bird, with its additional yellow throat, than the "Myrtle's Warbler" we are use to viewing in Ontario. The female Rufous Hummingbird appeared as it had every morning so far and the Chestnut-backed Chickadee returned to confirm our lifer observation of the previous evening.

Image by Bob

Speaking of lifers folks, Jean spotted a Cassin's Vireo (#272) in the branches of a tall conifer near the deck. We were both able to view through our bins but it was Jean that observed the white spectacles of the bird to seal the i.d. Our morning of birding over, we headed for the ferry for a day in Nelson.

Did I mention the coffee in British Columbia is amazing? If so, let me repeat, the coffee in B.C. is freaking amazing! Arriving in Nelson around noon we found our way to the Oso Negro.

Image by Bob

It was bustling and I thought I better not delay my order as I may be turfed out like Elaine in a famous Seinfeld episode. Though I could not see that happening in B.C., everyone there is so relaxed and easy going. Jean and I enjoyed our Americanos with some righteous desserts (is there a better lunch?). Then a hard decision fell upon us. What beans to purchase? Before leaving with three 1/2 pound bags of beans (Prince of Darkness for my dad for his part in dog sitting) we added 2 species to the B.C. list. The birds were on the patio outside the cafe, looking for any dropped crumbs. Yes, House Sparrow and Rock Pigeon as you might have guessed. That was all for the avian sightings.

Image by Jill (mum)

Strolling the streets of Nelson we encountered many interesting things. Including this piece of graffiti. I don't normally condone graffiti but a bird was involved.

We stumbled across a bike shop. I had some birthday money burning a hole in my pocket so I was left on my own to explore Gerick's bike store. We left Nelson with the car smelling of coffee and a Gerick's cycling jersey tucked into the trunk.

Image by Bob

Leaving Balfour, Jean and I spotted some Common Mergansers near the shore of the harbour as we stood on the upper deck of the Osprey 2000. During the crossing we spotted a lone Ring-billed Gull flying over Kootenay Lake. Unlike Port Dalhousie Harbour in St Catharines many of the harbours on Kootenay Lake have few of these scavengers fighting over tossed french fries.

Image by Bob

A pleasant dinner was enjoyed by all later that evening. It was time to relax with a Kokanee Glacier, for tomorrow there would some serious birding in the home of the Kokanee Glacier Brewery. The city of Creston.

All images by Jean unless stated otherwise.

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