The Lady Slips Into Harbour

I originally shot this July 13th,2008. The Lady Washington was just entering Tofino’s harbour at sunset. She and the “Hawaiian Chieftain” were coming in for a three night stay!
They come every three years to the west coast. They cancelled the return trip in July 2011. I do not know why but suspect it was because of financial concerns? If people are worried about their money…they do not spend. Which means a smaller market. Smaller markets means smaller profits.
I think it was simple economics that scuttled the Lady’s visit last summer.

It rained almost all day today & thats what It looks like for tomorrow as well. Wednesday looks better!
I’m looking forward to getting out! First thing I’m going to do,is go visit the Lions! I want to see what they’ve been up to?
I will have some new shots for you all soon enough!
I’m expecting a call from Mother Nature shortly!


It was raining all day today. So I didn’t get out. The photo opp looks piss poor for the coming week as well!
I’m always hopeful for a small break in the light! I’ll have to be to be glued to the Satellite site! Fingers crossed?

This is a eagle I call “The Daredevil”. He & his mate “Delilah” live down at Tsapee Narrows.
He & Romeo are the only eagles that allow me to get close. Romeo lets me get close when he is on his rock. On the ground! Thats unusual! Wild eagles just do not allow that to happen. It’s taken me many years of visiting my eagle friends for them to trust me!
If I were to go near a eagle that I’ve never seen before, stop my boat,……it would take off!
Which is a good thing! All animals should be fearful of other animals! Especially Homo-Sapiens!

The “Miss Danielle”

I finally was able to get out today! The Winters in Tofino can be a hard place to be if your a lover of the “Great Outdoors”! It looks like only one day this week at best too!
I went down to Cannery to visit with the Lions. The tide was high so I couldn’t find any of them in their normal spots! They were on & by the float! Also on what I am calling “Kenfalls Point”. It’s a point of land near a creek called “Kenfalls”.
This point of land is a spot they hauled out on last year. I noticed that the Lions were not just around the shore edge on this point of land. They actually were inside the forest! I found that strange & reported it to Rod Palm .( a local Whale/animal expert)
He told me that the only other known spot where the Lions haul out into the forest was up in Alaska! I went around the point to see if they were inside the forest and a few were,but mostly around the shore. I suspect that when their numbers increase & space becomes a premium,that there will be more of them on the inside.
Once again I think their numbers are less than what they should be or at least what I’m use to. I have no idea why? They may be further down the Inlet hauled out somewhere? I am going to have to take extra fuel & go check this out!
On the positive side,the float inside Cannery is in the light finally! The earth’s axis is moving enough to the south that the sun is now higher than that mountain to the SW. It has been blocking the sun all Winter!
The wind started kicking up,so I figured I better head back. The Inlet was capping from the NW winds,so I went to the north side of the Inlet where the wind lee was.
On the way back I visited with the Daredevil/Delilah at Tsapee Narrows,as well as Moe/Maggie & Romeo/Juliette. They all seemed to be in good spirits.
Romeo & Juliette were concerned about a neighbor getting too close to their territory however. I was lucky enough to capture the moment they both took off to intercept said Intruder!
Many fishing boats were coming back into the harbour at sunset. The Geo-Duck opening must still be happening.
I didn’t get as much as I hoped,but it was still a great day to be out!

The “Harvest King”

The Harvest King is a cargo boat for Creative Salmon. A local Fish farm company.
The boat was coming from Indian Bay & going over to the Warne Island farm.
This shot shows how expansive the inlet actually is. Tofino Inlet goes several miles further down to Deer Bay.



I have never seen this boat before. He is a Geo-Duck fisherman & was heading to 1st.Dock to unload his catch.
If you look closely in the above shot,you can see Romeo taking off in the background,with Juliette looking on near by!

Intruder ALERT!

This sequence defiantly needs alittle explanation.
You can see both Romeo & Juliette perched in the first shot & their heads are both pointing in the same direction. They were both watching the same thing. Than a second later,Juliette takes off & so does Romeo!
They both were watching another eagle. They think he/she is too close to their territory!
They both took off to escort said interloper to the door! Being an eagle means that you will be spending much of your time chasing away other eagles interested in replacing you!
If you look in the above shot,you can see both Romeo & Juliette flying towards the intruder. The intruder is in the top left.
What’s funny are all the ducks taking off! They think Romeo & Juliette are dropping by for some “take out” KFC! What the ducks don’t realize, is that their location is the problem. They are simply between Romeo/Juliette and the intruder!
The only thing the ducks see from their perspective are two BIG EAGLES screaming in at THEM! They don’t know that it’s a territorial thing & book it!
Sooner or later we are all at the wrong place at the wrong time!

The “Devil’s Racetrack”

Didn’t get out today. Too many clouds! Tomorrow should bring some light?
I thought a shot I took a few years ago in Death Valley would be interesting.
This is the “Devil’s Racetrack”. It is what is called a “Playa”. A flat lake bottom. Very flat! I think Playa’s are the flattest known natural occurring formations!
A unusual event occurs on this Playa. Rocks move! Thats right,rocks move around on their own! You can see the trails left by these moving rocks all over the place!. I saw trails that were hundred’s of meters long & the thing is…………….nobody has ever seen them move!
You also need to know that this location is remote. It takes several hours of driving on very dusty & at times bumpy, roads! So It’s not like anybody is out there to witness this activity!
I even think a rock weighing over 700 lbs was found! They named it (Katie?) There are hundreds of these rocks all over the Playa with distinctive trails left running here & there all over the Playa.
I was told by a park geologist that during the Winter, Death Valley gets these strong rain storms. It almost never rains in the desert but when it does,the water is always damaging!
The Playa gets wet and changes from being very hard, to be very soft & slippery. Come night time,the temperature drops and creates a huge ice rink!
All the stones are lifted up by this thin layer of ice. The final parameter is the wind!
Some of these Winter storms can have very strong winds! So the theory is that the very strong winds push these rocks like “Curling” stones!
The mud does not freeze totally. The mud must remain flexible enough to allow impressions to be left,but still very slippery!
I picked up some soil & spit on it. I rubbed it between my fingers and it became like grease!

I think I would like to see something like this!
I even came up with a crazy idea on how to record this unusual phenomenon!
Put a object that will glide (maybe a metal disc?) on the Playa with a GPS unit on it. Than have several cameras (with infra-red capability) on tall poles at strategic spots around the edges of the Playa. These cameras would require solar cells for power.
Than put a motion sensor on the metal disc. When this sensor detects movement,it sends a RF signal to the cameras to start recording.
It should work,but as always “the devil is always in the details”! (no pun intended)
The Devil’s Racetrack was a fascinating spot to photograph! Very quiet! No wind,no birds,no sounds! I could hear the blood coursing in my ears.
It’s one of those place’s that a person would always remember!

Radar Beach Fly By

The light was terrible today,so I didn’t bring the camera out. A mini high pressure system is suppose to move in tomorrow. So maybe I’ll have something fresh for you guys?

I shot this originally on Oct 4rth/09. I went up in a plane near sunset. I love the long shadows! It gives texture to a otherwise flat looking surface. One of the problems with Aerial photography is that the land tends to flatten out!
Thats why I only go near sunset. I get not only the texture but also get the golden light! A win win in my books!!

This is Radar beach. It is at the base of Radar hill. The trail to the beach is not on the official Park plan,but it is a very popular path for people to take. Another unofficial trail is the one to the crashed Cansol airplane! That crash is on the south side of Radar Hill at the base of the hill.

Psst!…………..”who’s the big turkey”??

I didn’t get out yesterday or today. I would of posted something last night,but a large wind storm took out the power!
Today was clean up day in town.
I didn’t shoot anything today,so I thought I’d put up something funny tonight. I took this last Monday.(Jan 23/12)
We had some snow and I was out looking around for things to shoot. While I was down at 4rth St. dock,I noticed a small murder of Crows with a big old Gull sticking out like a sore thumb! All the birds were on a local Fish Farm company’s fence (Mainstream). They’re always hanging around waiting to gobble up any spilled fish feed.
I laughed when I first saw it. I wondered if anybody else had seen it?
I thought the old saying went……”Birds of a feather flock together”! Someone needs to explain that to our fine feathered friend!
Lets pretend for a moment,that Mr.Gull was somehow brought up by the Crows & has always thought of it’s self as a Crow! Just a bit bigger & whiter! Wouldn’t that make a interesting book? ( anyone takes my idea I want 3% royalty’s!)
I bet the other Gull’s would look down their beaks at him!!

Another Frontal system is upon us, so the light looks poor for tomorrow. If the waves get up & It’s blowing out,I may head out to the beach?
Thursday is the day they are calling for pure sun! First thing I’m doing is heading down to visit the Lion’s! They’ve become my ongoing Winter project.

Adam & Eve

I shot this originally back in 07.As you can tell,It was overcast & rainy here in Tofino today! So I didn’t get out.
It’s during these winter storms that I need to be patient.
This is a Spruce grove on Meares Island. I’d like this spot to stay pristine,so you’ll excuse me if I do not say exactly where on Meares.
I shot this with a medium format film camera. I only shoot my nudes in the forest when it’s overcast.
The clouds diffuse the light so there are no blow outs. A portrait photographer achieves the same affect by using white diffusing umbrellas to reflect the flash off of.
Personally I prefer Mother Natures technique!


I originally shot this last Sunday.
I didn’t get out today because of too much cloud. The next week looks poor for both weather and photo opportunity’s!
I’m always hopeful for small breaks in the clouds however!
Salty was heading east past Ginnard point in Browning Pass when I came across her. I wish I could run into her or for that matter any wolfs more often! She has a great disposition but her mate “Pepper” doesn’t!
Typical male!

Blue Heron

The wind wasn’t as bad today,so I was able to get out in my boat! I was chocked after having to cancel yesterdays shoot due the wind whipping up the waves!
I headed straight down to Cannery bay to check in on the Lions. On the way there I ran into this guy and a “Ballet” of Trumpeters! I stopped for a few shots & than continued on my way to Cannery.
When I arrived at Cannery I was shocked to find no Lions! Yes there were some on the float (which was in shadow) but there were no others!
I have no idea whats going on other than to think that they were out in the Inlet eating Pilchards?
I got a few of the Lions that were available and turned around to go back into town.
I finished my lack luster day paying a visit to Romeo & Juliette at Deadman Island. Unfortunately ……..they weren’t home! I couldn’t believe it! I was seriously striking out today & after yesterdays fiasco getting a bit bothered!
I waited for half a hour and left. The sun looked fantastic ,so I went back just to make sure they weren’t there and saw Romeo coming up to perch from behind!! I was so very happy to see him! Juliette joined him as well a few moments later.
It was good to see them both! I noticed that their new nest has not had any work done to it. I’m not sure what is going on there?
I noticed the other day that Ernie & Ethel were displaying courting behavior,so maybe Romeo & Juliette stepped out to let their feathers down?
All I know is that they saved my butt tonight!
It was cold but worth getting out tonight!


I could only see a few dozen Lions today! That meant that about 300 of them were elsewhere! I have no idea where?
I wish I could radio tag them with GPS units! I could than map out there patterns and find out more delicious info on my furry friends!
I think all the other Lions were out getting a bite myself.


We got some snow last night and I wanted to get out in my boat bad! My heart sank when I saw the wind was already kicking up the water in the harbour! Today was one of those important photo days that just doesn’t come around very often! So I decided to head out and see if I could get out?
The NW wind normally kicks up just the harbour & leaves Browning Pass and Tofino Inlet alone. Meares Island acts as a huge wind break. I did manage to get out but even before I stepped in the boat, my gear got splashed.It was in a sealed pack but I don’t like getting salt water on my gear. It screws up the zippers. Even if you wash it later,it seems to slowly erode the zippers.
I went through the harbour & after seeing how much it was already kicking up down Browning Pass,I said thats too much for me & headed back. I love my photography, but I love life more.Safety first! I can always go out another day!
Didn’t get much today as a result.
This is my 4700 posting on this blog.


The cloud structure was all wrong today. So I decided to stay on land. I went out to the beach to see what was happening?
The ocean was very calm! I could of gone out to the Lighthouse in my boat,……..but why? If you don’t have the light,you don’t have a picture!
Speaking of which,I was fortunate to have a model(Devo) & her furry friend (Bella) pose for me out on Frank Island. They both looked beautiful in golden light.
The light literally lasted a few seconds!
I came back into town and saw Ernie & Ethel on Strawberry Island. The light was poor but they were both together,so I took a few. Ethel took off while I was glassing them. I think she felt me looking at her.
For whatever reason,she doesn’t seem to like me! She always takes off when I come upon the scene!
Thats why I “think” she felt me glassing her. Animals are very sensitive,except for us!

Best Buds!

This is a local with her dog. Devo & Bella. They happened to come out to Frank Island when I was there shooting. I asked if I could take a few shots of them both? She said sure.
The Light was fantastic for only about 30 seconds! The sun came through all that cloud and made them snap,crackle & pop! The snow in the background was the icing to the cake!
When they first came out onto the island,Bella had started barking at me! She must of been at least 500 meters away and just knew that I was trouble!
She later came over and to say hi sheepishly.

Ernie & Ethel

I can’t prove it,but only suspect it,but……………I think I spooked this eagle (Ethel)! She’s always been skittish around me. Animals have a extra sense that is dormant in most of us.
We use to have it when we were “Hunter Gathers”but because of our domestication,that extra sense has become dormant!
What “sense” you ask am I talking about? You know,you just haven’t thought about it.
You ever been walking down the street and all of a sudden you feel someone watching you……you turn quickly and yes you do see someone staring directly at you!
We have this “sense” (as all animals do) to protect us from being preyed upon! It’s good to have that extra sense if you wish to survive!
The thing is that we just do not use it anymore. We’ve had no need. We are living like animals in a very large zoo! We are cocooned in safety. Our environment does not threaten us as much. If we were living out in the bush for several hundred years,our species would most likely revert back & we would regain this “sixth” sense!
I’m not even sure what to call it,but I think we call things like this “Physic”? A general overall description that doesn’t do it justice.
We all have it & yes the “STAR WARS” movies made use of this sense & called it the “FORCE”. It basically means being in touch with your surrounding environment!
So,getting back to my example with Ethel. She’s been sensitive towards me for whatever reason,(she doesn’t seem to like me & theres no accounting for taste obviously) & simply felt me looking directly at her! So she bugged out.
She felt me watching her at least 1 klick away (1/2 mile for you guys in the States).
She does it all the time! I can’t prove it and am not really sure I understand it?
However,I am aware of it & thats half the battle to knowing!

Lions,Eagles & Wolf ….OH MY!

I got out today and immediately headed down the inlet to Cannery Bay.
I ran into “Salty” at Ginnard Point and stayed with her as long as possible. The tide was coming in but the shallows stopped me from getting close & if I hopped out of the boat,she would of high tailed it out of there!
It was great to see her! She was by herself. Not sure where her mate “Pepper” is or the pups? The Pups should be getting big by now!
I was thinking of checking out where I believe their “Den” is. I thought they had moved on.
I do not want to put my scent around their home and spook them off. Think I’ll stay away.
I actually tried something I always wanted to do in this scenario!
Because she was trotting along the shore happily,I went down the shore ahead of her 2 klicks or so and pulled the boat up to shore. I than took my camera and hid behind a large rock on the shore! When she would came by I would be in a excellent shooting position!
I had my binocs as well to keep track of her.
Unfortunately she never appeared! She couldn’t of seen me around the corner put in & I even took off my red jacket so as not to be seen as easily!
It was worth a try.
I said goodbye to her (wherever she was?) & continued on to visit with the Lions.
When I arrived, I was very surprised to find that there were only a few hanging around! It was sunny and they should of been lazing around!
They must of been out grabbing a bite?
I got a few of the ones that were there and headed back into town to visit with my finely feathered friends. I saw Angie & Logan on their perch just before Tsapee Narrows and stopped to shoot a few and say hi.
I continued on to Deadman Island to visit with Romeo & Juliette. They both were active tonight. Even Juliette came over from Deadman to greet me as I arrived! Thats the first time I’ve seen her do that! Romeo does that from time to time but never Juliette.
I got some great shots of them both in their element!
The sun had set and I headed back. I’ve noticed the last few days that the Geo-Duck boats have been unloading at the dock at sunset. Obviously a “opening” is happening at the moment.
Another great day in paradise folks!

A Mistake!

First things first. I apologize for the quality of these shots. I was a distance from this when it happened. I need to explain…….
After the matured eagle flew away with the dead Gull,several other Immature eagles attacked the mature,forcing it to drop it’s prize!
One of the Immatures turned and swooped in to grab the Gull.
Immatures are still in that learning stage and like teenagers! They think they can do something,but usually end up biting off more than they can chew!
Thats what happened here. This Immature grabbed the Gull & promptly stumbled into the water! It had to flap it’s way to the shore. If it had of fallen further from shore,I would of been able to go pick it up if I wished! (of course I would never do something like that,but Biologists use this technique to capture,tag,weight etc) They throw out some fish on a fishing line and when the eagle grabs it,they simply pull the line in. Eagles cannot retract their talons like a cat. They need to be on land to do that.
It got to shore,shook off and got the HELL out of dodge! It knew I was coming.
All animals make mistakes……all animals.