Winter Cabin Visit

Today I am sharing a few more images from our February visit to our cabin. I am focusing on the beautiful rural scenery rather the disaster happening inside the actual cabin. Blue sky and snow make for stunning images.

blog lake isle_3921

Trees in the cabin’s backyard.

Winter roads.

Winter roads.

Footprints and trees.

Footprints and trees.

Blue sky and leafless trees.

Blue sky and leafless trees.

The last picture is one of my favorites. It sums up why it is so great sneaking away to this part of the world.

blog lake isle_3902 aPhotography by Debra Hunter.
www.debra-hunter.com

 

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Storm Clouds Over Lake Isle

lake isle, alberta

View from Hoffman Beach.

lake isle, alberta

View from the bridge near Baybridge.

lake isle, alberta

View from Hoffman Beach.

lake isle, alberta

View from Hoffman Beach.

I was glancing through a few images this afternoon looking for some painting inspiration. These pictures are from last weekend when we were up at the cabin and stormy clouds hung over Lake Isle all afternoon. The cool weather this spring has meant few cottagers have been out to their cabins and has made for a very quiet lake. The quiet has been very nice.

Mayflies!

Here is the post everyone has been waiting for!

(Yeah right!)

Every year at our cabin we experience one or two mayfly weekends. A mayfly weekend is pretty hard not to notice. The sides of our cabin are coated with mayflies. There is a constant buzzing and humming as the mayflies swarm. A step onto the grass sets off another swarm, and if you dare open the door to the cabin the little invaders invite themselves in to fly near the house lights all evening long.

Mayflies

Mayflies

We went to the lake and got swarmed. We tried to rake the flowerbeds and got swarmed.

Mayflies on the fence.

Mayflies on the fence.

We went to check out the noise at our neighbours and saw this…….

Mayflies swarm over the roof.

Mayflies swarm over the roof.

Even sneaking into the cabin meant dealing with these flying creatures. We left the light on at the front and went in the back door in the dark hoping to lessen the number of indoor mayflies.

Mayflies by the light over the door.

Mayflies by the light over the door.

Mayfly weekend is definitely something to see, however remember to keep your mouth closed when outside or you’ll have a not-so-tasty flying treat in your mouth!

Cabins and Snow

It seems like this week we have been on the move a lot. We drove back from the coast (close to 24 hours door to door), got everyone settled in work and school, then discovered insurance didn’t cover snow load on the cabin so it was off to the cabin this weekend to sort that out.

As usual we didn’t get going early in the day, so by the time we made the almost 3 hour drive we were starting to see the sun go down. The clear winter sky gave us a beautiful sunset over a frozen Lake Isle (Lac Ste. Anne County, Alberta, Canada).

last turn in the road before the cabinThe last bend in the road before the cabin gave us golden light to admire and then it was time to get down to business.

snowed in cabinThe cabin had definitely seen its fair share of snow. We were able to slog through the thigh high snow however our two youngest that joined us on the trip had a few more problems.

kids navigating snowOnce the snow passed their waists we realized that playing in the snow at the cabin wasn’t exactly working as they were completely stuck. While Mark pulled out the ladder and started clearing the roof I shoveled out a mini road through the snow for the littles so that they could at least walk up and down and play a little. Littles settled, up I went to help Mark on the roof.

clearing snow off the cabin roofclearing snow off the cabin roofThe snow was heavy and thick once we got on the roof. It was much deeper than it appeared from the ground. Mark took one side and I took the other and got to work (and moaned a bit about how much snow there was!). We shoveled until we were out of light and then called it a day.

winter cabin at nightWe managed to get about two feet of snow off the roof before darkness set in . It might not be perfect but a lot of the weight was now off the roof. We took a quick moment to take a look inside the cabin and all was safe and sound exactly how we left it when we put it to bed in October.

cabin interiorcabin fireplaceThe cabin was tempting us to stay, but we were three kids short (they were having dinner with the grandparents) and hadn’t brought water. Now we are thinking “maybe next weekend”. Perhaps this is the year we should open it up early, go for a snowshoe and get a big old fire roaring in the fireplace.

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The cabin, close up, and other things.

cabinAs fall is in full swing, and the temperatures have started to dip at night, we decided it was time to start closing up the cabin for the season.

empty roadThe roads are empty.

lake isle, albertaThe lake is quiet.

fieldfieldThe colors in the field are golden.

stacked woodThe wood is stacked.

last fire of the seasonYet we enjoy one last fire.

kitchenliving room

We tidy the cabin.

bed put to bed beds put to bed

We put the beds to bed.

emptying the bird boxWe empty the bird boxes.

empty chairsThe chairs are empty.

family timeWe treasure the time we had as a family.

I often blog about time at the cabin and I am sure many wonder just where it is. Our cabin area has unfortunately been in the news lately. The train derailment that occurred at Gainford, Alberta this past weekend is just across the lake from our cabin. We hear the 1 a.m. train every weekend and that very same train is the one that derailed and sent fireballs flaring. We were lucky this past weekend, a few kids fighting colds kept us from going up for the final close up. Luckily we avoided the smoke and the traffic problems, which is minor compared to the families that have been evacuated and have had farmland burned to the ground. Hopefully final close up will happen this weekend.

(Warning: today is municipal election day in Alberta. As I watch the numbers roll in this evening I know the scene is building for a very immature post from me tomorrow. Just thought I would throw out the warning!)

Lac Ste. Anne County – Open House Coming Up Saturday September 14th

Lake Isle, Lac Ste. Anne County, Alberta, Canada

I know I have a few residents of Lac Ste. Anne County that pop by the blog on occasion so I thought I would just put up a quick link for the open house coming up this weekend. The details can be found at this link.

This is a great opportunity to see what may be up and coming in the county.

The Open House is on Saturday, September 14th from 6:00 to 9:00 pm at the Sangudo Community Hall.

Paddling on Lake Isle – Lac Ste. Anne County, Alberta

Lake Isle, AlbertaWe finally took the plunge and decided to put the canoe in the lake. It has been ages since we have canoed, years in fact, as we had abandoned canoeing the minute we bought our first kayak. Let’s face it, kayaks are toys. They are fun, and our little 9 footer turns on a dime making our canoe feel like it is plodding through the water. However now that our kayaks are happily living on Pender Island, we decided it was time for the boat that had been sadly leaning against our fence to finally hit the water again.

The other weekend the lake looked good and smelled good so we decided it was a good day for a paddle. I had bad memories of a wobbly canoe and panicky kids from times canoeing in previous years, but none of this came true on this outing. Clearly kayaking in the ocean had made us stronger paddlers, braver paddlers and also made for braver passengers ( our children). I had forgotten how wide a canoe was compared to a kayak and how much space we had, that took a little bit to get used to.

The outing was successful. We never get to paddle very far as we take turns rotating through which children get to ride and which ones get to paddle. It is pretty much like a lakeside fairground ride. We had missed the bloom of the water lilies this year, but we still managed to paddle by all the lily leaves floating on the surface of the lake. We paddled back and forth along the lake’s edge; most of the cabins had not put docks in this year which made this an easy task.

Hopefully this coming long weekend we will get another windless day and be able to put the boat in again. The kids were thrilled to canoe, and we were pretty surprised with how much fun we had.

Lake Isle – Drama in the Sky

Storm over Lake Isle, AlbertaWe were out at the cabin again on the weekend, a nice way to escape the noise and commitments (A.K.A. “laundry”) of the city. We had just finished clearing up dinner on Saturday when I looked out our back window that has a view of fields and trees to see a weird, funky cloud hanging in the air. I looked out our front window and noticed the same cloud hanging over the lake. This appeared to be a photo op and I just had to check it out. I quickly made the 100 meter trek down to the lake, entourage in tow, only to realize I had never seen another cloud like it. It was strange but amazing. I fired off shot after shot as the light shifted and then went.

Storm over Lake Isle, AlbertaStorm over Lake Isle, AlbertaStorm over Lake Isle, AlbertaStorm over Lake Isle, Alberta

After shooting the sky we decided we needed to run out quickly for provisions…..okay, actually something in the form of an “evil” snack containing chocolate. We headed for Darwell and the sky grew darker. The store was closed. We headed for Fallis Store under even darker skies. The store was closed. (Note: we run on a very different time clock to most people, this explains why the stores were closed!) We headed to Darby’s General Store at Seba Beach under ominous skies, and the store was OPEN. RESULT! (….and it was quite busy too, probably due to the fact it also sells “liquid refreshments”!)

We went the slightly longer more scenic route on the way home. This is when the drama in the sky really started. Lightning surrounded us on all sides. Thunder clapped loudly. It was one of those unpredictable storms when you never know where the lightning will flash next. Halfway home we realized we should have taken the quicker route. The storm had all the deer on edge, we had never seen so many jumping out of the ditches and into the road. watching the lightning and watching for deer made for a slow drive home. (We hit a deer once and hope to avoid that situation again. It wasn’t much fun , but even less fun for our vehicle that suffered $15K worth of damage!)

We finally made it back to the cabin and the storm had eased a little. Momentarily. Then it returned. Lightning. Wind. Then the power started to go off periodically. When the power starts going off and on in the cabin we take care of important things first…..we put the kettle on…..seriously. Our philosophy is if you are going to be hanging around reading by candlelight you might as well have a nice hot cup of tea or coffee to drink. It is important to know what one’s top priorities are in life!

The storm eventually eased up and the power stopped going on and off. It was definitely an evening of drama in the sky.

(I had a lot less drama the next day with a lovely little photo shoot along the edge of Lake Isle. If you’d like to take a look, just click here! It’s the same dock in the background but very different weather.)

 

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