The best time of year?

By Grant Brown, Founder, Happy Eco News

Bear Creek, East Harrison, BC. A small, high gradient river in full flow conditions. Image: Grant Brown

In BC where I live, we are now fully in the fall. The leaves on the trees are turning colour, the warmth of sunny days transitions quickly to the chill of late afternoon and an early dusk. Despite the cooler weather, autumn might just be my favourite season. As much as I love the summer, I love the fall. I love it despite the shorter, darker days and increased rain, and because of the sheer beauty of the wild places near me at this time of year. I love it for the wild wind storms that showcase mother nature’s fury and strength. I love it for the quiet of the parks and camping areas, and the knowledge that these highly utilized, semi-wild places finally have a break from people, regenerating until the next human onslaught of spring and summer.

Here in the Pacific North West, all our rivers large and small will soon be full of wild salmon, bringing a huge surge of nutrients into the heart of the coastal forests. At higher elevations, the rivers run fast and full, raging down the steep inclines of our Rocky Mountains, to slow in the lower gradient, freestone sections where the salmon splash in the shallows, spawn and then die, their life cycle complete. The coastal forests themselves are dark, quiet, and full of life, even in this cool, slower metabolism season. Creatures of all sizes, from eagles to bears, follow the riverbanks, feeding and dispersing the nutrients from the sea that are contained in the salmon’s very flesh, the elements of which can be found in the plants and animals so far from the ocean.

As the fourth quarter of the year begins, we can finally forget the heat, dryness, and fires of summer. As the days get shorter, we instinctively look to our dry, warm dens for comfort.

In my mind, this comfort is made even better by an exhilarating day outside, in the crisp air of wild places.

 

 

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