15 September 2012

Spectacular September

A dozen of us struck out Saturday morning for the Last Days of Summer tour, and the sun was certainly smiling down on us.   Led by our Education Coordinator, Janis Hindman, we journeyed through the Delta Nature Reserve, across the boardwalks lovingly built by Society volunteers.  Several of us were bog newbies, including myself, and were grateful for Janis' crash course on methods of identifying the useful, medicinal and edible native species to be found all around us.

Surrounded by salal and and labrador tea, and of course with  the spaghnum underfoot, this was a great opportunity to work on our tans while appreciating the natural beauty of Burns Bog.  We shared foraging techniques, learned for poisonous plants to look out for, and wondered what it would take to make skunk cabbage edible.  (Apparently, the answer is: a lot of work.  I think I'll pass on that one.)

While we tried to focus on an ecological investigation of our surroundings, the bustle of nearby Highway 91 did occasionally distract. An excellent question posed by one of the tourgoers was: when (and why) was Highway 91 built?  This one completely stumped me, but I am admittedly a little young to remember that the highway was built just in time for Expo '86.  (Now my historical curiosity is piqued; perhaps there will be more to come on this.) So my mind occasionally wandered, I confess... but the memorial benches which line the boardwalks helped to ground us, and reminded me to give thanks to the day.   

 Wandering through the groves of cedar and hemlock, we were often greeted by passerby; it was a bustling Saturday, with many dog walkers and cyclists also taking tours of their own.   I'm sure many were wondering what our large entourage was up to; though we did field many questions, about the possible presence of beavers or bears.  None were spotted this go around, but you never know about next time.   

Hopefully the Autumn tour in October is equally well-attended, and in equally glorious weather!   If you're interested in joining us and learning what Burns Bog is all about, we'd be glad to see you at 10am on October 20th.   Please get in touch with us at info@burnsbog.org if you're thinking of attending; the tour is only $5, and all proceeds go to supporting the work of the Burns Bog Conservation Society.  

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