Reprint – In the Sanctuary of the White Bear

In the Sanctuary of the White Bear   Green Living   The Ecologist

A rare white ‘spirit bear’ in the BC temperate rainforest. Photo: Ian McAllister / pacificwild.org.

[su_quote cite=”To many who live here, this singular being is an emblem of the sacredness of the rain coast and its vulnerability. “][/su_quote]

In the sanctuary of the White Bear by Canadian Poet Lorna Crozier

17th November 2013

 

Poet Lorna Crozier vists the Great Bear Rainforest in BC, Canada and finds a fragile paradise imbued with myth, meaning and magic for local indigenous peoples.

The big grizzly is perched on the other side of the river bank, so near he can hear the rain on my jacket. He raises his blunt head and courses the air. Stares at me and sniffs.

Above the stench of rotting salmon, my smell has been drawn into a grizzly’s nostrils, through the nasal passages inside his long snout. Part of me now lives inside the mind of an omnivorous animal whose Latin name ends with horribilis.

The bear is here for the salmon, who have returned to the rivers of their birth to spawn and die. We’re here for the bears.

Photographer/filmmaker Ian McAllister has joined my husband Patrick and me on our first morning to help introduce us to his home turf, the Great Bear Rainforest, a tract of land that follows B.C.’s coastline from the tip of Vancouver Island to the Alaska Panhandle. He and his wife Karen run the Pacific Wild conservation group to protect this astonishing piece of wildness that they’ve known intimately for over twenty years.

The largest intact temperate rainforest in the world, the traditional territory of the Kitasoo / Xai’xais First Nation, this region is only two short flights from Vancouver. But we are as far from a city, as far from ordinary life, as you can get. . . . more

This essay originally appeared in Toque & Canoe, and in Counterpunch.

Mise Tales Twenty-Eight

 

For an update on what a Mise Tale is then please see Mise Tales One.

The Lovely Bones   IMDb

The Lovely Bones   IMDb2

Has anyone seen the movie released in 2009 entitled The Lovely Bones? It features a fictitious lighthouse marking the entrance way to heaven in a thoroughly entertaining film.

“Centers on a young girl who has been murdered and watches over her family – and her killer – from purgatory. She must weigh her desire for vengeance against her desire for her family to heal.” – IMDb

There is one strange thing about this lighthouse – the light in the lantern revolves counter-clockwise (CCW)! This is most unusual and there are only a few lighthouses in the world that revolve CCW, the majority revolving clockwise (CW).

A couple I found were in Australia. Does anyone know the whys and wherefores of CW vs CCW rotation of the lamp? I think this deserves further investigation and maybe a future article. Thanks for any help you can contribute. Continue reading

Inside Passage Ferry Trip to Visit Some of the Lighthouses

The idea for this story came from an article in the Vancouver Sun newspaper. I asked for permission to reprint it here for all to see, and they said I would have to pay them. This was an article about the Inside Passage ferry trip with mention of a couple of lighthouses – very few actually. I am not even going to mention the title of the story – how can they turn down free advertising.  😉

manned lighthouses

manned lighthouses

 When you visit Canada do you plan on seeing some lighthouses? We have twenty-seven (27) manned lighthouses on the west coast of British Columbia (BC); Canada. There are other unmanned lighthouses that are available for viewing also. You can see some of them if you wish with the BC Ferries, plus enjoy wonderful trips through BC waters.

 

The Inside Passage

Let us start with the longest trip first. How about fifteen (15) hours on a luxurious ferry in daylight so that you can make many photos. Fifteen hours may seem like a long time, but there is so much to see that time flies by, especially if the weather is fine.

Northern Expedition

Northern Expedition – BC Ferries photo

 

Northern Adventure

Northern Adventure – BC Ferries photo

There are two ferries on the route (2013) – the Northern Expedition and the Northern Adventure. You can actually follow them live on this website.

Continue reading

Picture BC – a New Website

My website here is about British Columbia (BC) lighthouses and the environment surrounding them.

Just recently a good friend sent me an email to a website called Picture BC, a delightful photo and video tour of the province of British Columbia, Canada – as beautiful now as when it was created in 2008.

Picture BC - Fisgard Lighthouse

Picture BC photo

According to the site:

Picture BC is an initiative of the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM), an organization representing the communities participating in this website. The idea and support for Picture BC came from the Province of British Columbia.

The site contains a five (5) minute video tour of the whole of BC (above) which is very well done. If you have never been to BC, you will want to come and visit after seeing this video. If you plan on coming, this is where the lighthouses are. The video shows two or three lighthouses near the end of the clip but there are many more on the BC coast.

There are interactive maps of the regions of BC with links to most cities in the province.

There are also some beautiful photos of major tourist destinations in BC, as well as scenes which cannot be seen unless you take a helicopter or plane ride.

The website is done with Adobe Flash player so it is a bit tricky to manouever around, but have patience – it is worth it!

Enjoy!

 

 

My Philippine Lighthouses

 

As most of you know I am living in the Philippines now. There are lighthouses in the Philippines, and some of the ancient structures are being rebuilt as historical monuments by the Coast Guard.

As far as I know there are no manned lighthouses here. Most of the lighthouses are automated beacons of low power used by fishermen to return back home, like the one at the left that I discovered at Apatot Beach, San Esteban, Ilocos Sur, Philippines. This is listed in the Lightstations Northern Luzon Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) webpage.

Here is another one closer to my hometown of Candon City, Ilocos Sur. I found this lighthouse by the sea in the Darapidap area. It looks a lot older than the one above.

It was found in the town square. As it is not very high I assume it is only used by the fishermen. This type of tower may be used all over the islands. This is listed in the Lightstations Northern Luzon Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) webpage.

The following interactive embedded map is from ArcGIS Explorer. This online program allows one to create personalized maps about various subjects around the world. This one is about Philippine lighthouses listed on the PCG website. I have marked with coloured circles the various lighthouses, RED for manned stations, BLACK for automated stations, BLUE for ruins, and ORANGE for lights that are tended by PCG living in the area.

Clicking on the dots brings up a name card with information.


View Larger Map

One article which caught my interest is The Lost Lighthouses of Ilocos Sur (part 4) 

101-year-old lighthouse is Bolinao’s landmark (part 3) and more photos here.