Saturday, 31 January 2015

Day 62 Okamino and Beyond
Before you start thinking this is either a terrorist's dream undershirt or a policeman's bulletproof vest, this is the Xtreme Monkey commercial weight vest. You may wonder why I'm bothering with this, but our son Marc bought one a few days ago to get a better workout when taking his dog Bob out for his daily stroll. He won't be strolling but grunting when he's added the full 55 pounds!  Each slot holds about 3 pounds and you can start small and work up. In flatland Ottawa, this is a great idea. 

Well, imagine my surprise when we bumped into Superman, I mean, Peter on the  WRT hike today.  We started talking about hiking and getting exercise, something I do with nearly all the people I've talked to recently. He offered that he's been wearing a weight for a few years. I asked to see it, of course.

Might be a good idea to get a lighter version for myself.
 Peter also has a rescue dog named Zach, a name I'm fond of because that was Don's nickname for a while in high school. Why did we need to rename ourselves so much back then?
This whole truck was covered with this realistic image of trees. Amazing. 

Friday, 30 January 2015

Day 61 Okamino and Beyond
Where has the first month of 2015 gone? As humans, we suffer from the phenomenon of time, in which as a young child a day is a very long time and as you grow older, feels like a shorter and shorter period of time. Did I completely confuse you?
A skiff of snow on the grasses on Knox this morning.
 Two more dogs, Jack Russells, Dozer and Tala from Magic Estates who walk their owner into the ground, at least 10 km every day and ready for more. They were really enjoying being petted.
 This is Molly Carroll who the owner says has her own Facebook page (I checked, it's true) and is in 2 movies. Looking sultry in the back seat.
Yikes this photo is so overexposed, but wanted to share a good photo of the master latte maker at Giobeans and it isn't Don.

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Day 60 Okamino and Beyond
They watched me, but didn't move. There's a third one behind the tree. This is the back part of Knox and you can feel far removed from the City. Over zero temperatures have left us with little snow in the valley.

Though not a good photo, I get excited when I see a bald eagle. They were rare in Northern Ontario. Hell, we were glad when we saw the occasional Canada Goose, though that has changed and now people are thinking they are a pest. Funny that.

Met my long time friend Kathy at the Bohemian Bagel Cafe or The Bo as it is more widely known in Kelowna. There's good advice on the wall.  We both were there in different parts of the restaurant waiting for the other. Ha ha This happens a lot with us.

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Day 59 Okamino and Beyond
Sometimes I feel like I'm going to know every dog that hikes Knox with their owner, but I soon realize this is silly. A LOT of people have dogs. I mean a LOT. Please meet Duke, a timid sort, but cute as hell. 
There's almost no snow or ice left on the Apex trail, just a little at the top. The warm weather has practically melted all that snow.
 Don't you love this?

Day 58 Okamino and Beyond

My one year anniversary of going to heArt Fit is coming up in February and I'll have to celebrate somehow, but for now, I/we continue to explore making marks on canvass/wood/paper and enjoying ourselves tremendously. Keith's kick boxing extravaganza is full of motion. 

Renata is not afraid. Her exploration with vividness is very exciting!

The days are getting longer and I didn't get to the WRT hike before 4:00 pm. I brought my light, but even though it got dark, I could manage the downhill well enough. This is looking West and the next looking East. Such different light!

Monday, 26 January 2015

Day 57 Okamino and Beyond
Before, during and after Sunday supper, participants dabbled with paint on a canvass and glued items resulting in this mixed media extravaganza. Don't know what to make of it, other than we all had a good time doing it. the way it is upside down and I don't know how to fix that on the Blog. Looks alright this way too. 

Mighty fog rolling in this morning for my Knox hike. Sure stand in contrast to the painting.

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Day 56 Okamino and Beyond
Shadows mean it is sunny in the woods and the gorgeous interplay of textures here is enough to make you swoon.  It warmed up to 7C this afternoon making for a hot climb in clothes we normally have on in colder weather. 
I don't think he trusts me with a camera. We are both listening to CBC Radio and the Sunday Edition. We used to chat incessantly and still do, but this is an opportunity to learn about the world together. "This is That" does the trick for giggling.
This is Kevin in the first wagon I've seen this year. I know we are going to get colder weather, but I swear the trees down the street seem to be budding.

It has been icy on the hiking trail in these parts because of the thaw/freeze/thaw/freeze cycle we're into.  These handy add-ons to your shoes or boots are called Ice Trekkers and will give you purchase on even the worst surfaces.  As opposed to another brand that usually falls off and gets lost on the trail, these babies firmly grip your soles and stay on. There are other brands which may be cheaper but stay away from them. Other brands also break more often.

Saturday, 24 January 2015

Day 55 Okamino and Beyond

It was Friday night Book Club with the wonderful women with whom I've been discussing books since 1998.  Last night was hotsted by Barb who has been the unofficial organizer since we started has a list of all those books, one a month excepting July and August for all those years.  This is an art installment she put together of miniature books she's made herself. I wish to have more time to study this enchanting work.

Barb's husband George Sanders showed off his Championship Belt for the Ringside World Championship masters featherweight boxing title which he won last summer. The belt is 16 pounds or roughly 12% or his weight. Congratulations for all the hard work George.

Mutual northern and southern Book Club member Kathy, wine maker extraordinaire took a shine to my painting of Penticton's sandstone bluffs and took it home. I'm very happy it found a nice home.

 This is a young black Standard Poodle with a beautiful disposition by the name of Stella we met on our hike in Wilden.

All this warm weather is not helping with the outdoor hockey rink.

Friday, 23 January 2015

Day 54 Okamino and Beyond

Chantal and I met another daily hiker today who said that Knox was our Stanley Park. Nice way to put it Lise. It is such a nice surprise to find a fellow French Canadian. Lise is a photographer and can't understand the concept of a picture a day. She doesn't see how she could limit herself that way. I think I understand.
Those dark grey clouds are from the "pineapple express". For those out east, this is a strong westerly system bringing high winds, warm air and water from the Pacific (Hawaiian Islands sounds more pleasant) making it over the Rockies. 

Day 54 Okamino and Beyond

I've made this observation that travelers connect to each other more easily when abroad, and that when the traveler is alone, that it is that much easier than when you're a couple. By thinking of my daily hikes as an opportunity to travel, albeit sometimes in the same places, it has become easier to meet new folk as I have over the last few months. This has led to some interesting intersections. We all know people who do this automatically and I've been envious of that skill, like our friend Bill, the friendliest guy I know. 

Milan has been in Kelowna since 1971 and farms in east Kelowna. Knox is not his favourite hiking territory; that's in the Rockies east of Revelstoke. Milan is a Serbian name.

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Day 52 Okamino and Beyond
Heavy fog last night created hoarfrost on the WRT hike this morning, so delicate, so uncommon a sight. 
On Ponderosa Pine needles the ice crystals are spectacular. 
 The frost on this tree was not going to last long in the sun, so I hurried to take a photo against the deep blue of the sky. Today's hike confirming my mantra that there is always something new to see, even on hike I've done hundreds of times.

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Day 51 Okamino and Beyond
Some days have more colour in them as today did. At heArt Fit the group participated in doing a series of cooperative progressive paintings where a canvas meandered from each one of us to the other.  

Vreni stated  her collage with cut outs of roads from maps. She added paint. Is she saying something about the roads we find/get lost in/have fun in/take?
 The pieces  to the lefton the easels  are the cooperative ones. Lots of different markings and colour. Keith with the Hawaiian shirt was the fearless leader in this liberating exercise.
There was a lot of energy in this room today.
Renata is zeroing in on smaller elements of each painting, finding gems. An art director at heart and play.
 After lunch there was still time for a walk up Knox in the sun, but unbelievably, there was fog on top. Introduced myself to Veronica who I've seen hiking here many, many times. 
Blue sky and fog. Only in BC.
 I think he said his name was Dale. That's gotta be hard work going up no matter how cool those tires look.

Monday, 19 January 2015

Day 50 Okamino and Beyond
It is with gratefulness I'm hiking today, for my friends and family, my health and well, the sun today. I am not alone on this hike. What I used to think as inelegant mule deer are starting to look more graceful, though they will never equal the white tail deer we knew from Ontario. The deep snow with a couple of hard crusts is hard on them and easier for the yipping coyotes. I've found blood and fur in the last week.  
There it is, reflecting nicely on white snow, making the trees look green, not gray.
There one is, just ahead of me at the top of the knoll, keeping a close eye on me, making sure I don't get too close.

Sunday, 18 January 2015

Day 48 Okamino and Beyond
You find something new everytime! Hadn't walked this trail on the top of Knox this way before and it gave me some perspective of where we were in relation to houses along the water. Beautiful even though it is gray.
 I've heard it said that it is a measure of a culture's progressiveness if there are public washrooms available where people are. If that's the case, Kelowna is very civilized as here we are on the top of Knox by the pavilion and there a porta-potty installed. Made use of it just to let them know it wasn't in vain.
Day 49 Okamino and Beyond
The umbrella was for the rain as we started up Knox, but it soon stopped and glorious sun joined us. It is illogical to think that's it because I had an umbrella that the sun kept on, but there you go, we are human after all.

There it is, the sun, making lights lighter and darks, darker and showing off reds. Yippeee!