Shortly after I came out to British Columbia in early 2006 I had a case of severely high blood pressure. It wouldn't have been fair to an employer for me to work for them until I got my health situation sorted out. I was on medications to lower the blood pressure and it took until early 2007 to find the cause. I finally went to a naturopath who found that a microscopic parasite was the cause for all this.

While getting my health in order, I took up blogging to share my photography. This way I wasn't wasting time and others got to enjoy the photos, not just me and those close to me.

In May of this year I had a mini-stroke cause again by severely high blood pressure. I may end up gong to the naturopath again since the specialist and other MDs can't seem to find the cause. This has only been a problem out here. Before that in Ontario, the blood pressure was only marginally high, not severely high like in BC.

Knowledge is good because being forewarned is forearmed!

All that said, enjoy this blog and all the photos I share with you.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Spring on Burnaby Mountain

This past Monday (Easter Monday) I was up on the western end of Burnaby Mountain in Burnaby, British Columbia to see how far along the Japanese Cherry Trees were. Well, they are in flower now but will be better this weekend or next. They are likely delayed due to the elevation as the ones in Vancouver are a week or so ahead in flowering. I plan to make another visit this weekend, weather permitting.
While we're on the subject of cherry trees, the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival is in full swing and is presenting its second annual Bike the Blossoms on Saturday (tomorrow) from 10 am till 4 pm. The start is at Vancouver's Van Dusen Botanical Gardens plus a number of other start points. The 23 km circular route is fairly easy and has farmer's markets and eateries along the route. If you live in the Greater Vancouver area, for more information check out their website at for the details and to register.

Bees of all sorts are important pollinators, so bumblebees were busy collecting nectar at the spring heather that blooms in beds near the Horizon Restaurant at the western end of Burnaby Mountain (see centre of photo above).
The view from this end of the mountain is fantastic. The image above shows Capital Hill in the centre, downtown Vancouver and Stanley Park behind that and the Coast Mountains to the right. There is yet another view below.

Above, there is Capital Hill and a better view of the Coast Mountains to the right with a closer view of Capital Hill below. Both Burnaby Mountain and Capital Hill are sedimentary in nature. They were left by the retreating glaciers and so are different in structure from that of the Coast Mountains.

Then the photo below shows a rain shower in progress in North Vancouver as seen from the mountain (centre background).

I also saw a guy trying out his parasail technique on Burnaby Mountain as well. The wind varied and would die suddenly for no reason before building again. It was after watching him for a while that I noticed a Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus) fly overhead east-northeast toward Burrard Inlet and the mountains. There are a lot of updrafts allowing for soaring! I've seen about five eagles so far this year as opposed to 17 of them last year.

The image above shows a close-up view of Hastings Street in Burnaby looking west and the one below shows Metrotown, also in Burnaby.

The photo above and the one below show typical trails on the mountain. The Trans-Canada Trail crosses Burnaby Mountain. I hope you've enjoyed the photos, and if you don't live in the area, perhaps you'll take the time to visit us one day to see all this first-hand.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Vancouver's False Creek - South Shore Part II

With Part II we continue. The weather was great for a walk last Sunday along the south shore of False Creek as the sun and blue skies would indicate. Many people took advantage of the pleasant break in the overcast, rainy weather to walk, ride their bikes or skateboard. The view above is from the east side of the Cambie Street bridge looking east toward Science World and the highrise condos behind. The image below was taken from the same side of the bridge looking toward Yaletown with one of the stadiums behind, one of the sites of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympic games (opening ceremonies I believe). The photo below that shows a view of the Cambie bridge looking north.

There are signs of spring everywhere, including this hill with a forsythia shrub blooming halfway up, and then there is this pond in Charleson Park along the south shore of False Creek. Then there are some early rhododendrons in bloom as well.

The photo above shows a hill on the eastern end of Granville Island and the image below looks east-northeast from near the island. You can see the dome of Science World in the distance.

The flower buds on some trees are thick and ready to open soon. Magnolia trees should be in bloom very soon.

Planters of spring flowers can be seen on Granville Island and elsewhere. Below is a view of the Armory on Burrard Street just south of the Burrard bridge. The Molson Brewery is just behind that between the Armory and False Creek.

Banners are up for the forthcoming Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival. Some of the first cherry trees are already in bloom in Vancouver as seen this week, a week of rainy, overcast weather. Mother Nature gave us an April Fools joke Wednesday (April 1st) with snow most of the day though it didn't stay except in higher altitudes. When taking the SkyTrain into town to work that day, I even saw a bald eagle even with the train as we entered New Westminster station. The mix of rain and snow didn't seem to be a bother. Anyway, check out the website regarding the cherry blossom festival.
The photo above shows the view from the east side of the Burrard bridge and then the images below show views on the Burrard bridge and the street itself.

I thought I'd end the post with a view looking up at one of the major hotel towers in downtown Vancouver. You can see that hotel (the Sheraton on Burrard Street at Nelson) in the photo above and a close view in the image below. I hope you've enjoyed the photos. If you live in the area, perhaps it'll bring back memories or if you don't, perhaps you might want to visit to see the Greater Vancouver area first-hand! Have a great weekend, as this one appears to be better than the last!!! With Easter next weekend, perhaps even better weather is at hand!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Vancouver's False Creek - South Shore Part I

The weather last Sunday (March 29) was sunny and reasonably warm for the season, so while I was in Vancouver for some training connected with work, I decided to take a walk along the south shore of False Creek starting at around Science World. These are some of the photos that resulted from my series of shots taken (part I). The image above shows what looks like a weathervane/artwork of some sort but there also looks to be a camera there as well. Have a close look. That photo was taken outside the dome at Science World. Below is a view of False Creek looking west from Science World. Yaletown is on the right and the winter olympic village on the left.

There is a pigeon resting in the photo above and a closer view of the village in the photo below.

There are some pieces of artwork around the Science World location, such as the wood sculpture above and then a general view of the area in the image below.

Since last taking photos of the olympic complex under construction, a lot of work has been done despite the set-backs that have struck the work. The remainder of the photos will show what progress has been made since last autumn. Part II to follow soon. Meantime, enjoy these photos!