Last Sunday my wife and I drove to our huckleberry spot, which is known for its lavishly abundant crops. This year we had a particularly good growing season. A warm and sunny spring brought out their flowers to be promptly pollinated. Then cool and rainy weather set in to make the berries grow to almost the size of the commercial blueberries. Sunday had been our third and last day of picking. Together we gathered more than 10 pounds of top quality huckleberries, which when frozen will last us throughout the winter. The pretty wildflower greeted us when we entered our favourite picking area. Enjoy.
For our wedding on May 21, 1966, my mother wrote a touching poem, which she also spoke on tape. She was unable to attend the wedding. So Biene and I could at least listen to and enjoy her voice. Chronologically, her message belongs to Book III of the Klopp family chronicle, but her good wishes and heart-felt words are a very fitting conclusion to the trials and tribulations we had to endure before we could finally tie the knot.
Today I start with a recreational theme on hiking. There are many wonderful hiking trails in and around Fauquier that are waiting to be discovered. Also there is no better time to explore the awakening of spring than by a walk through the woods along the rushing waters of a creek. Even if one was blind and could not see the beauty, the fresh aromatic air swirling about one’s face and the melt waters thundering at a distance would be enough to make you feel in tune with Mother Nature.
This afternoon after a heavy rain during the night the sun was shining brightly. So Biene (Gertrud) and I felt like driving down on Applegrove Road to our favorite spot at Taite Creek. We were lucky. We had the lake, the beach, and the campground all to ourselves. After our customary game of bocce and some home-made cake and coffee, which I brewed on our camp stove, I went for a hike, while Biene enjoyed the peace and quiet in the warm sun to do some knitting.
More than ten years ago a sports-minded father created with axe and chainsaw a challenging dirt bike trail for his teenage son. We discovered it by chance and since it had been abandoned by father and son it turned out to be one of our favourite hiking trails.
For the first 500 m it runs parallel to the lake until it reaches the mouth of Taite Creek. Then turning left it follows the creek for about one km before it moves away into dense forest. Old overgrown logging roads crisscross the area creating a veritable maze where you could get easily lost. Luckily the boy’s father had carefully marked the path by tying yellow ribbons onto tree branches. Near the end the trail changes direction and crosses an old growth forest area, where in the fall I find some of the choicest mushrooms for our dinner table.
Everything except for the trail is wild around here. This is perfect wilderness and nature at its best. One must often climb over a tree trunk that a violent storm had blown over across the path. Canada geese nest near the lake. The air is filled with the high-pitched voices of the osprey. And if you are lucky, you might see the king among the birds of prey, the bald eagle, soaring high above in the sky.
The trail ends at the bridge on Applegrove Road. If you are ambitious and don’t want to return to camp by the same route, you can extend your beautiful walk a little by turning it into a full circle tour. From the bridge you walk a few hundred meters in the direction of Fauquier, until you see the campground access road, which will lead you back where you started. There will be more posts on hiking trails in the near future on this blog.
In early July our family gathered on Galiano Island. This was definitely a major highlight in the lives of all family members. In addition to strengthening the bond of our family that is scattered all over Canada and the world, it was also a celebration of Gertrud’s and my golden anniversary. We spent four glorious days with the finest weather on this beautiful Gulf Island. The participants were our son Richard from Montreal with our three grandchildren Mateo, Azure, and Emeline, Anthony and his partner Lisa from Victoria, Michael and his wife Angie from Vernon, Stefan and his partner Laura from Vancouver. Unfortunately, our eldest son Robert could not attend, as he had just started a new engineering job in Germany. The video below will tell the entire story. Enjoy!