Monday, September 1, 2014

urban sanctuary

can you believe it is already september?
to finish off my favourite month of august,
 we took our annual walk around swan lake christmas hill nature sanctuary.

before harlow (our dog) came to live with us, 
we use to visit this spot frequently, 
but in order to protect the wildlife, dogs are prohibited in the sanctuary...
so we left harlow at home with his big brother and sister.

this nature sanctuary is just 15 minutes drive from our home, 
located in the heart of saanich, a neighbouring district of victoria.

it includes two ecosystems;  the marshy lowlands surrounding the lake; 
and the rocky, highlands of christmas hill.
the two sections are connected by a picturesque 2.5 kilometre loop trail

it's a fantastic walk, 
especially because the floating boardwalk 
allows you amazing perspectives of the wetland areas

there was so much to see during our trek...
i really like the effect on the water of the bubbling systems
 that were put in place to control mosquitoes in the lake.

look at that shade of green !!!
the sanctuary is home to so many birds and water creatures... 
if you are a birder... this is paradise.

there are plenty of ducks and they love being fed !!!
grain is sold in the nature house to help support programing at the sanctuary.

the christmas hill highlands is remarkably different from the lake's wetlands.
of special interest to visitors are the bedrock formations 
and the garry oak woodland

this urban sanctuary is truly a beautiful gem in the middle of the city.  
it is accessible by bus, or by bike (via the galloping goose trail and lockside trail). 
 there are no admission charges to enter although donations are welcomed.

i found some blackberry patches while on the trail... 
if the kids aren't back to school this week, due to the b.c. teachers' strike,
this might just be our spot for harvesting berries.

happy labour day everyone !!!

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