Sunday, May 17, 2015

Kootenay Country

With the election behind us, the sky still blissfully above us and the weather warming I am hopeful of using some of my days off to get out and explore further afield.  I have a couple destinations in mind (okay, more like 5 or 6) for some bird watching trips that I hope to make later this summer that I hope I can pull off.  This all reminded me that I had failed to mention my last little trip to BC which I had actually taken early last year.  I meant to blog about it but the post languished half-written and then faded into obscurity until I came across the photos from it earlier this weekend.

At any rate, time to make good.   I spent 3-4 wonderful days in the Kootenays last February in the small town of Creston.  I didn't really add a whole lot to my birding list but the temperature there was hovering around +2C or so which was a welcome change from the -20's back here.  As an added bonus, I discovered that the Creston Valley also sports a couple of wineries which I tucked away in my memory for future trips.

These grain elevators aren't something you would normally expect to see in BC.  These two must surely be among a select group.

As you can see, it was rather overcast but as I mentioned earlier the air temperature was a pleasant change so I wasn't about to complain.   Here are a few westward views of the Columbia Range taken from across the valley on the east side of the Kootenay River.  The valley itself extends south into the state of Idaho which from this point is about 10 km (6.5 miles) away as the crow flies.

The one thing I wasn't able to do because of time restraints and mucky weather was get down into the flats along the river.  Not only is it important in terms of agriculture but it also serves as an important stop-over for birds.  I suspect though that it was probably a bit too early in the season to see anything interesting but I'd love to re-visit during a warmer time of the year.