Archive For The “Skeena River” Category
I had great plans for shooting the super moon and the eclipse blood moon on Sunday night, September 27. Unfortunately the ideal shot of the moon rising over our iconic Mt. Elizabeth (which I have captured in the past) was impossible, there was a storm blowing in, and the overcast was so heavy that dark moon wasn’t even visible.
But today, I captured the related super tide –at low tide–which is the shot, I am sure, no one was looking for. To be honest, I was trying to shoot fall colours on a gloomy day where the Skeena lives up its original in name in the language of the Tsimshian First Nation, K-shian, “water that falls from the clouds,” also translated as “river of mists” and now is colloquially called “the Misty River.”
I was amazed at the Skeena was so flat, and so low at a time when it had been raining for the past couple of days and should have been much higher.
A few hours later when I was driving back from Prince Rupert, in a pounding rain and wind storm, the river was actually higher than I had ever seen it before.
I didn’t realize what I had until I was watching the weather segment on the CBC National, and the Weather Network presenter mentioned there was a super tide. Google checks confirmed that a super tide accompanies a super moon.
Telegraph Point, on the Skeena, taken at 1135 hrs on September 28.
Telegraph Point is about 44 kilometres (27 miles) inland from where the Skeena reaches the Pacific Ocean, and the tides do reach even further inland than that. Low tide at Prince Rupert was at 0811 on Monday. There aren’t tide tables this far inland (not needed for sailors)
As I arrived for an appointment in Prince Rupert, it started to rain. By the time I had completed my appointment and had had lunch, I drove back in a wind driver rain storm. I stopped briefly at Telegraph Point and grabbed some quick shots.
This shot, roughly the same angle as the first low tide shot, was taken at 1457, just after high tide at Prince Rupert at 1426. You can’t see it in a still image, but in the river the water was moving rapidly upstream.
This was taken at 1512 from the same spot as the first low tide shot.
Another angle from Telegraph Point taken during the storm at 1512.
(All images above taken with Sony Alpha 55)
This was one of my first shots of the day, taken about 25 kilometres further upstream at 1101. (taken with Sony Alpha 6000)
Tide tables for two closest points on the Skeena
Current tide for Kwinitsa Creek
Current tide for Khyex Point
Supermoon 2015 to cause highest ‘super tides’ for 19 years (Independent UK)
The falls colours along the Skeena can be fleeting. For a while the cottonwoods are changing, while the alders remain green or begin to change to yellow. A few days later, the time I drove along the Skeena in the middle of October 2013, the tall black cottonwoods have quickly lost their leaves, while the alders (and occasionally birch) along the river banks shine bright yellow in the afternoon sun.
Far from the sea, a seal (front right) swims up the Skeena, Oct. 16, 2013.
Bare black cottonwoods on a beach along the Skeena.
The sunsets on the Skeena near Terrace, BC, Oct. 16, 2013.
On Thursday, October 3, I drove to Prince Rupert for an appointment. With heavy cloud cover on the way into to Rupert I didn’t get much of a chance to shoot the fall colours which are just beginning to peak on some parts of the Skeena (but not everywhere, due to micro-climates you can drive through bright yellows and then a few kilometres further on it’s all still green).
Appointment over and after a hearty seafood lunch at Cow Bay, I headed back to Kitimat, listening on the car radio to the storm warnings and wind warnings from Environment Canada for yet another major early fall storm approaching the BC coast. It was soon apparent from the darkening skies that you didn’t need an Environment Canada weather warning that a storm system was moving in.
Prince Rupert is on the northwest corner of Kaien Island. Highway 16 skirts the the west end of the island until you come to the bridge to the mainland where the highway will either go east to Terrace or south to Port Edward. At the viewpoint just before the bridge, you could see the gathering storm. (By the way there was no rain at all during the time I was driving back and stopping at various points to shoot).
Just a few kilometres further on, despite the dark skies, the Skeena was flat calm. Those pictures in the next blog.
The oolichan, the tiny oil rich fish that sustained the First Nations of British Columbia for millenia come up the rivers in the early spring. At least they come up those rivers where oolichan (Thaleichthys pacificus) still survive. Like the salmon, the oolichan live their adult lives in the ocean and then return to their native streams to spawn and die.
One of the rivers that still sees an oolichan run is the Skeena. Gulls, eagles, ravens, seals all come to feast as the oolichan migrate upstream. The gulls, sensing a feast after a long, harsh winter, are almost in a frenzy, circling and diving over the spot in the river that the oolichan migration has reached.
On Friday, March 8, I was driving to Prince Rupert for an assignment and stopped at the Telegraph Creek rest area. I was lucky, for it was at Telegraph Creek, a great spot for photographs, that the oolichan had reached. There were a few naturalists at Telegraph Creek watching the show. It was an elderly couple who first clued me in to what was going on. Thank you.
Mostly gulls. An eagle flying overhead. Seals or sea lions just upstream.
If I didn’t have that assignment I had to get to in Rupert, I would have stayed at Telegraph Creek most of the day. But as it was, I did manage to get a few shots of the hundreds of gulls circling, wheeling and swimming. I got a couple of not very good shots of an eagle overhead (not very good which is why they’re not here) and the seals or sea lions weren’t anywhere close. So I stayed as long as I could, then it was back in the car for work.
On Friday, February 3, 2012, I was driving to Prince Rupert, BC, to cover the No to Tankers rally the next day for GlobalBC News and Canadian Press The drive (or train trip) along the lower Skeena is always magnificent, the mighty water has come through the mountains and now when the river widens.
The Skeena is known is as the “Misty River.” In the language of the Tshimshian First Nation, the river is the “K-shian,” the river of mists.
On that Friday,a high pressure system was driving off the gloomy winter overcast that had lingered since December, while along banks, the mists still clung to the river banks and hills, As the sun set, the light was magnificent, The problem especially with all the snow piled up along the edge of the highway there were few safe places to stop and shoot except the designated rest areas.
The reverse angle, away from the sun set, shows the mist hugging the mountains along the Skeena at Basalt Creek.