No.41 Buy Now The sun sets behind an rogue piece of driftwood
Last Time

After completing the first adventure of our travels (don’t worry, more to come on The West Coast Trail soon), we took off for our Norway road trip.  I had heard amazing things about Norway.  People tend to focus on the scenery which I was particularly looking forward too.  And, of course, everyone laments the cost of everything, which I was not looking forward too.

We had a quick stop in London then it was onto to Oslo.  We flew from Stansted Airport which is horrendous.  Add Ryan Air to the mix and a pleasant experience is not the result.  Everyone is grumpy and I mean everyone.  The check in staff look like they could throttle anyone at any moment.  The security staff are walking round with red faces and steam coming out their ears.  One security lady remarked to another “You can’t choose who you f&^%ing work with” after another stormed off in an apparent fit.

We made it through and just put our heads down and dreamed of Norway.  It arrived soon enough and we were treated to a glorious day.  By glorious I mean grey, bleak and full of drizzle.  Which turned to full on rain before we left the airport.  I actually had to check to see if we hadn’t been turned back to London.  The UK would have been proud of such weather.

It was a fairly easy transfer from Oslo airport to downtown where our hotel on St. Olavs plass was. We had a plan to try to keep things on the cheap so tonight’s dinner was crackers, avocado and tomato purchased at a nearby grocery shop.

We awoke the next day to absolute shenanigans.  Apparently we had chosen Norway’s Constitution Day to see Oslo and it was rowdy.  According to one Norwegian, it’s the day of the year when Norwegian’s don’t behave like Norwegians.  Empty bottles of champagne lined the streets by 10am.  Folks of all ages, all dressed immaculately roamed the streets singing, dancing and carrying on.  Many folks wore traditional dress which was impressive.  I am not positive but I am quite sure that every single pastry in Norway gets a flag on this day.

It was an interesting day to be in town for sure.  We missed out on a lot of museums and other sights due to the holiday however it was incredible to see the Norwegians in such a festive mood.  It was definitely a day party though, by 8pm the streets were dead.  After the day, it was almost an eerie feeling wandering the quiet, empty streets.

The next day we picked up our hire car and began the epic six hour drive to Trondheim.  We chose the scenic route, 523km through Lillehammer and the mountains.  It’s a Norway road trip, why not?  We were graced with an utterly uninspiring day.  There really isn’t much to report.  It was a torrential downpour and a thick, thick mist.  If there were views to be seen, I could not tell you.  We saw the odd waterfall and raging rivers.

Fortunately by the time we reached Trondhiem the clouds began to part and the evening was incredible (as you can see by the first photo in the post).  An interesting and varied start to our Norway road trip, exciting nonetheless.  I will leave you with the setting sun near our campground.

No. 42 Norway Road Trip
No.42 Buy Now The sun sets near Trondheim, Norway

Until next time,



Tsusiat Falls
No.38 Buy Now Tsusiat Falls
The Other Day

Imagine tramping through forest, bogs and loose sandy beaches for a day, packs feeling heavy, the legs are weary and suddenly Tsusiat Falls is in front of your eyes.  The sheer energy and force of this powerful waterfall was enough to energize the legs and motivate the mind. Well, sort of.  I think it was more the ice-cold “waterfall shower” that woke me up.  It was still a sight to behold.

We were promised we would be soaked on the West Coast trail.  The forecast appeared quite positive, but you never quite know on the coast.  We were two days in and the weather was nothing short of glorious.

Tsusiat Falls sat at the 25 km mark of our trek.  It was a place to rest and prepare for an epic 18 km hike the next day.  I was excited, it was picturesque, the weather was good and I was carting 15 lbs of camera gear for 75 kms.  It was game time.

I got busy, playing with settings, framing Tsusiat Falls, watching the sunset. Naturally, things didn’t go to plan.  I snapped a couple of shots, as you can see below, then disaster struck.  A disaster of my own making there is no doubt about that.  I suppose I could blame the moon but it won’t do much good.  I forgot about the rising tide and the fact that they actually continue to do just that, rise.

No.39 Buy Now Tsusiat Falls runs into the Pacific Ocean
Pay Attention

So, there I was shooting away.  The sun had only moments left with us on this day.  Suddenly, I noticed some movement out the corner of my eye.  I realized that it was a widespread sheet of water coming straight for me, my camera and my “not fully zipped” camera bag.  Grabbing the tripod in one hand, with the other I snatched my bag.  I slipped, fell knees into the water, holding my camera high.  The bag slipped from my grasped and the water immersed it.  Only for a second, I clasped the bag, yanked it out of the water and crossed my fingers.  There may have been some cursing.

I raced back to camp, hesitantly opened the bag for a look and sighed with relief.  Items were wet, but the new, expensive lens only had a droplet or two.  Ryan saved the day.  He had brought extra paper towel and after some extensive drying everything seemed relatively unharmed.  That ended the shooting for the night.  I wanted to let things dry properly before getting back into it.

It was a magical evening as well.  The full moon was beaming down and scattered clouds made for a surreal, unphotographed experience.

No.40 Buy Now The sun sets behind these enchanting trees

Oh well, we’ll try again tomorrow.

Until then,


British Columbia, Landscapes and Nature

No.37 Buy Now Darling River on the West Coast Trail
The Other Day

I am back, from both the West Coast Trail and a blogging hiatus.  We have also begun our travels, well the West Coast Trail really kicked them off.  Presently we are in a hotel in Oslo, Norway.  More to come on Norway and our European adventures soon.  First things first, the West Coast Trail.

It sure was one heck of a trip.  There is a lot to mention so I will break it up over a couple of posts.  Today, I’ll start with the details.  There was seven of us who embarked on the hike (in our group that is, we joined about 6 million other hikers…apparently that’s early season).  We decided to do the trek from north to south.

We stayed a night in these tiny little shoeboxes in Port Renfrew.  They were about as basic as it gets, but when you are about to sleep on a thin, light air-mattress for 6 nights it’s all you need really.  I won’t bore you with the details but I was sick that day and night.  I hadn’t eaten in about 4 days, I was feeling weak and thoughts crossed my mind of pulling out of the trek.  Fortunately, I woke up on Sunday morning ready and raring to go.

We caught a bus from the southern trail-head to Bamfield at the northern end.  This bus was…well…shit.  No suspension, heat cranked, stuffy and to add to that we got a bumpy, windy road.  Most of the passengers did not feel terrific.  The driver also insisted on driving on the wrong side of the road at all times.  This included around blind corners and blind crests.  The driver gave zero f$%^s!  We survived.

Off the bus we got, and off to the trail we went.  The photo above is from the campsite on day 1.  There should be more photos, but equipment failures and temper tantrums ensured that was not the case.  Stay tuned for more camera debacles.  We camped at Darling river, a campsite 14kms from the trail-head.  It was gorgeous, the sun was out and we were blessed with an amazing sunset.

It was a relatively uneventful first 14kms.  Ben acquired his first blister at kilometre two, but other than that it was mellow.  Day 2 was just around the corner.

Until next time,



British Columbia, Landscapes and Nature, Mountains, Squamish

No.34 Buy Now A Golden Squamish Estuary
The Other Day

We have had so much rain in Sea to Sky Country lately that when the sun began to poke through I had to rush down to the Squamish Estuary.  This place is amazing. It offers a completely different view of the Squamish landscape.  From this spot, all of the famous landmarks are in sight.  Can you see Shannon Falls in the distance? However, the highway is not visible making this feel like a wild and remote area even with Squamish downtown just over to our left.  When the tide is low and the rivers down the mudflats of the estuary almost feel like an apocalyptic wasteland.  When the water is high it shimmers golden (or whatever colour the sky radiates).

Is it possible to tire of a scene like this? I don’t think it is. As a result, Squamish continues to amaze me. Now I just need to get back here on a dark, new moon night to see what I can see.  Looking up, of course, the forest will be dark, eerie and full of the noises of night.

Until next time,
(Jta85 Photography)

No.35 Buy Now The Fog Begins to Rise at the Squamish Estuary
No.36 Buy Now Squamish Estuary Glows Pink & Purple
British Columbia, Landscapes and Nature, Mountains, Whistler Blackcomb

No.32 Buy Now Fissile Mountain watches over the valley
The Other Day

Fissile Mountain

Whilst waiting for patrol sweep on Blackcomb a couple of days ago, the view of Fissile Mountain was breathtaking.  It has been an amazing winter at Whistler Blackcomb this year, as a result, it really has been the winter that keeps on giving.  The snow continues to fall, the skiing continues to be epic.  Spring occasionally pokes through for a day as if to tease us.  As much as I love snow, powder and face shots while skiing, I am ready for some sunshine and spring skiing.  On Monday we received such a tease.  Without a doubt, it was a gorgeous sunny day.  The skiing was amazing and the weather delightful.  As the clouds began to roll in, the shadows on the surrounding mountains were incredible.  This included Fissile Mountain, an epic peak a few ridges over from Whistler Mountain.

We are now back into the midst of yet another storm.

I guess I’ll just have to wait for more of this!

No.33 Buy Now Fissile Mountain

Until next time,

(Jta85 Photography)