I didn’t think I was going to be taking any shots today! It started out overcast,but I saw on the Satellite a narrow clearing coming our way!
I got a phone call from Rod Palm that a Brown Pelican was down in the harbour! He knows I’ve been trying to get shots of this Pelican for over a week!
I hurried down to the last reported location & found it on the end of the dock at the Kingfisher condo’s! I approached carefully,trying not to spook it.It was a adolescent,not sure of the sex?
I was able to get within 25 feet! I sat down on the dock finger next to it & waited for the light to come. Some low lying,fast moving clouds were going over top of us. The light came in short bursts,but I managed to get some good shots!
It’s my birthday today & this was a great birthday present!


This high pressure system is still holding,so I made the best of it & got out for another great photo shoot in the wilds of Tofino!
I heard that there was a Brown Pelican around the harbour,or was! I’ve been looking for it,but haven’t been able to find it? Wish I could of gotten a few shots of him/her! I also heard it was friendly too! It probably continued along on his migration?

I found this Heron down beside Weigh West on a piling.I always like to get my first shot of the days shoot under my belt as soon as possible.
I continued on down the Inlet to Cannery Bay for the Lions. I was surprised to find not a one on their normal rocky islet (Lion rock)! They all were on the rocky shore line near by. I say “they all”,but there just the Cali’s! All the Stellers were absent…………except one,Big Ed! He looked rather odd being around just Californian’s, but he’s big enough to do whatever he wants!
Stayed only half a hour or so & decided to go up into Gunner for bears. Gunner didn’t have anyone home,so I went around into Fortune Channel. I found “Li’l Jackie” in the same area I found her yesterday! She’s been busy since I last saw her a month ago or so! She’s gained weight! (I thought it best not to mention that to her). She was in semi good light too! Some Cirrus cloud had moved in & diffused the light considerably. I prefer bright light when shooting bears. They are already so dark that I need that extra light to show detail in their fur. I normally shoot them at ISO 400 but had to bump it up to 800 today & also lower my shutter speed down to 1/200th!
I wasn’t paying attention to the boat while I was taking shots of her,when I noticed she stopped searching for crabs & just stared at me! I put the camera down & realized the tide had drifted me right into the shores edge beside her! She wasn’t afraid but more curious as to what I was doing. I had my headphones on listening to some music & I bet she heard that & was curious as to what the heck that noise was!
I gentle took my paddle & pushed myself away from her. I didn’t want to disturb her. She just watched for a few seconds & than went on with her daily chore of finding food!
I left her & decided to search the rest of Fortunes shore line for more bears. Couldn’t find a one! I returned to Li’l Jackie after half a hour & took just a few more. Said goodnight to her & returned to town. I’ve missed 3 sunsets in a row & was determined not to miss this one!
Mother Nature however had other ideas! That Cirrus cloud had thickened & snuffed the light! I did notice a small break right at the ocean’s edge however! About the thickness of one sun!
I went to visit Romeo & Juliette & wait for it. Vargas island unfortunately blocked most of that great gold light!RATS!
Decided to see if I could head out to the Lighthouse to free my western view of both Vargas & Wickaninnish Islands. The ocean was calm enough,so I went for it! I noticed that my fuel tank by this time was getting low & the tide was going out! So If I ran out of fuel while being out there,the next stop was Japan!
I couldn’t line up the Lighthouse & sun because the sun was too far south! Also a bunch of trees on the Island obscured the Lighthouse on that angle. RATS again!
Took a few token shots while out there & headed back in before I ran out of fuel! I bet I had less than a liter by the time I beached the boat!
All in all,not a bad days shoot considering.


She is the only bear left wandering about! All the others have gone for their Winter nap!
Our bears do not technically hibernate btw. We get no (or very little permanent) snow! Bears & many other animals hibernate because the snow covers all of the food! As your already well aware of,it’s cold in the winter! Which means you burn up more calories keeping warm & thus need more food! If all the food is covered with 5 feet of snow,this presents a BIG problem! So Mother Nature has decided that for animals in these areas to survive this environmental conundrum,they had better go have a sleep & wait for the Spring.
Also,technically bears do not hibernate to begin with! We think they do,but they do not. They go into a deep sleep. I’ve asked those in the know the difference & the best they could explain it to me was that a state of hibernation is simply a deeper level of sleep.
So,because our coast line is almost snow free & their is plenty of food about,our bears do not even go into this long deep sleep! They nap for a few weeks or maybe a month. Get up,go get something to eat & than go back to their Den for another nap.
Repeat as necessary!


This was shot at the mouth of Tranquil Inlet. This is Rankin Rocks.
Rankin Rocks are a favorite spot for the Harbour Seals to hang out at! They try to lift as much of their body up from the cold rock to warm up as much of their body as possible! I call this behavior “chipping”!
WHY?……. because their body profile resembles that of a potato chip!


This is the young bear that was cut loose by it’s mother a few months ago in Gunner Inlet. She seems to be doing just fine!
She also has accepted me into her flight zone,so I can get close to her.She is constantly looking over her shoulder for other animals (namely bigger bears) as a good bear should do I suppose. She hasn’t yet figured out the best spots to turn over rocks for crabs yet. The best spots are on the beaches! These rocks are single & easy to get access at. I find her digging away in areas where there are rocks piled on top of rocks! Much more work required than necessary I think!
She,like all of us on this planet will find her way through this muddle!
She’ll be going for a nap soon enough!


This is always a bitter sweet time for me! When I see the boys arriving (Sea Lions & only the males) for their winter stay,I know my bear friends are about to leave & go have a nap! One comes,one leaves! It’s as if they are tag teaming?
They have arrived several weeks early! I wonder if that means their numbers are going to be greater than last winters? Only a few hundred hung around last year & they didn’t even stay that long really! It all depends on the fish around? If there’s lots of food,they’ll stay!

The weather broke today,so I headed out. I figured I’d go down to Cannery Bay to check & see if the Lions had arrived yet? I was pleasantly surprised to find that they not only had arrived but were in good numbers! Spent about half a hour saying hi to the boys & than went over to Rankin Rocks to see what was happening?
No birds to speak of but the Harbour Seals were hauled out as per normal.
Took a few & continued along on my merry way to Gunner Inlet for bears. Found one & he seemed to not mind me hanging around. Said good bye & took off to go around the corner into Fortune Channel to see if I could find anymore? Only found one & the light on both of them was poor btw.
There were these micro rain storms hanging about & I got caught in one while I was up in fortune. Just grinned & beared it. Got the shivers too!
Headed back for sunset but once again all I could do was watch this fantastic sunset go to waste!! By the time I got back into the harbour,the sunset was history!
Took one anyways when the sunset was great just to show you what I missed.
Went to Deadman Island to visit with bot Romeo/Juliette & they were both home! Romeo as per normal was the only one to come visit me! Took a few shots of him with the moon & that was all she wrote for the night folks!
Had a great day!
As Dorthy said “Lions Tigers & Bears,OH MY”! I did see some Lions & Bears but I guess the Tigers were hiding!
Another great day in paradise!


The Lions are trying to get warm. The water is cold,so they try to stick their flippers out of the water into the sun to warm up!
If there was a geothermal pool beside the water,you can bet that they’d be lazing around it like Hollywood stars on vacation! They LOVE the heat & search for spots that are exposed to the sun. When their numbers increase & all the good real estate has been taken,they do go into the shadows as a last resort but much rather prefer the warm sunny spots,but than…..don’t we all!


The weather has been poor to terrible lately & as a result explains why I haven’t been able to get out! The clouds broke later today & I made a dash to get out! There was still enough cloud to confound me! I got out later than what I would of liked, so was forced to stay around the harbour.
I went over to visit Romeo & Juliette on Deadman Island but neither of them were home! Rats! I left & came back 20 minutes later & saw Juliette flying back to the island from the west. Romeo was still MIA & Juliette was in no mood for company. She’s always been a bit stand offish with me. She kept her back to me & all I could do was shoot her with the moon in behind! I said “thanks alot” & left to find anything else? Came across some Oystercatchers on one of the rocks in the harbour. They always come around during the stormy season. I can get fairly close in my boat but if I was on land I’d never be able to get within 100 meters!
I only stayed out a hour or so but still had a great time! Beggars can’t be choosey!


A friend phoned me up today & told me he had a Snowy Owl at his place! Adrian Dorst is widely recognized as the “Bird Man” of the West Coast! He has a passion for our feathered friends!
Jim Darling captured the Owl down near Tonquin & brought it to Adrian. If a bird is injured,people automatically bring it to Adrian!
This Owl is a young female. It was born last Summer up in Canada’s far north. (Arctic circle)
Adrian thinks the youngster is simply very hungry,& not injured. He has been feeding it chicken & she has been gobbling it up as fast as he can bring it!
It is being transported tomorrow to the other side of the island to a Rehab centre. Adrian feels that they will be keeping it for the Winter & releasing in the Spring.
He just about had a major problem as well!
He had left the apartment for awhile & when he came back,he found the Owl had gotten out of it’s enclosure! He also found his cat nonchalantly checking out the Owl! Remember that this is the largest Predator (Owl’s) in North America & was hungry!!
I guess he had feed the Owl sufficiently before going out & all was fine for kitty!
Kitty had no idea how close it came to getting into trouble!
Here are a few facts about Snowy’s.
They are 20-28 inches long,49-59 inches for their wingspan & weight anywhere between 3.5 – 6.6 lbs.They are one of the largest Owl’s In North America & the heaviest!Adult males are pure white with the females/young showing dark scalloping. They nest on the ground but have been known to move into an abandoned eagles nest occasionally!
They can have anywhere between 5-14 eggs in a clutch.
They predominantly are a Canadian bird & rarely travel outside the boundaries.The Snowy Owl is the official bird of Quebec.


The weather broke today & I didn’t need to be asked twice!
The tide was high,so I headed down to Tranquil Creek. You can only get inside the creek if it’s a high tide. I knew there would be a good chance that the salmon would be gone & the run finished for the year……………….& that’s exactly what I found!
I only saw two fish moving about in the fast flowing stream! I tied the boat up & took my chest waders me. Came across two bears as well! The first one didn’t see me,but I could tell it was injured! Most likely from a recent fight. Coming into the winter season,this bear could die from a wound like that?
It saw the second bear & retreated into the forest. The second bear saw me & looked like it was trying to hide behind a spindly bush! It was kind of funny to see this large bear thinking it was able to hide from me!
I returned to where I had tied up the boat. The tide had dropped & grounded me. I took the motor off & put the wheels down. The boat is designed to be very mobile!
Once I got the boat back into the stream,I decided to just drift. I realized that this was going to be the last trip into Tranquil for 10 months or so! It was kind of sad to think that actually! I’ve been coming up into Tranquil for 2 1/2 months now. I saw the entire spawning season from start to finish!
Thousands upon thousands of salmon had entered into the system to spawn & die. I saw many dead salmon littering the bottom of the stream & estuary! Many bears,birds feasted upon the salmon!
Another cycle has come & gone.
I headed out of the system & started my trip back to Tofino. It’s a long trip for me! It takes about a hour to get down to Tranquil!
On the way back I saw some Harbour Seals hanging out on Rankin Rocks. Found hundreds of Dunlin’s as well on Rankin!
Ran into a friend of mine on the way back with motor troubles. Started towing him back,but he managed to get it started anyways. Said goodnight to them both & headed to Deadman Island for a visit with my favorite eagle friend,Romeo!
He greeted me well & was receptive,but because of me stopping to help out my friend with his boat,It delayed me & I missed the sunset! I did get a bit of it,but the sunset’s peak had come & gone!
Didn’t find any salmon today & missed the sunset,but I still had a much better day than 99.99% of the Earth’s population I bet!!

The Cormorants are back for the winter & have started to hang around on their favorite haunts.