Friday, June 1, 2012

into the woods

i've been talking about going to woods for a year. a full year. 

what with having a new baby, moving to a new home, adjusting to life with the wife back to work with the boy in preschool and the girl with a nanny, well... it just wasn't possible last year.
but then my baby brother came for a visit last week. he comes to visit with his lady every year, and with every visit, we try to do something touristy and terrifically new with them.

so came our visit to lynn canyon.

just before children, the wife and i came out here with friends at least three times in one year and had really, just the best hiking experiences ever. (i miss those girls.)

but the park has since upgraded its amenities. the once flat trails i remember so well are now mostly accessible by stairway... and um, we didn't factor in how exactly, a stroller would fit into the mix.

we didn't get into the crevices of the woods as i had originally envisioned.

the boy wanted to be carried more often than necessary and the trails led to steeper hikes than we were brave enough to tackle with the girl on our back... but it was still, overall, a successful little family adventure.

the boy discovered slugs.

and i allowed myself to rediscover the forest.

i hunted for mushrooms. but with summer almost nearly underway in the forest, the mushrooms that teemed in the forest when i was last there in the fall almost four years ago just weren't there. 

the only fungus to be found were on fallen trees.

there's something so spiritual about being enveloped almost entirely by varying shades of green and brown...

something about the kind of quiet that is void of the ever-present hum of our city life.

the kind of quiet that gives way to the unmistakable rush of water nearby, or the constant chatter of birds unseen, and yet and all around.

the wife and i took it in turns to run down the nearby stairway to pay a visit to the gorge nearby.

it is so humbling to behold the sheer power of water rushing against earth and rock. 

(and i will totally admit to knowing for a fact that if i was ever reaped for the hunger games, the odds would SO not be in my favour. ahem.)

when it was the wife's turn to visit the water, i set the girl free in a nearby meadow and gave her free reign over where she wanted to go and what she wanted to do.

she wanted to play with the stroller.

and excavate the gravel road.

what is up with that? 

i took as many pictures as i could. 

but a hike with even one toddler (my brother and his lady scampered away with the boy after our picnic lunch) meant that i could only linger through the forest with my eyes and my feet, not my camera. there was little opportunity to zoom in and see the parts that make the sum of the forest.

i can't wait to go back. if not to lynn valley, then an elsewhere canopy-sanctuary nearer by. 

this time, stroller-free. with babes on our backs or on their feet.

maybe we'll just pick a spot and just go off-trail for a bit. 

maybe i'll come prepared with stories of faeries and gnomes and foxes and deer. 

maybe we'll take a moment to stay still together watching for and listening to the birds.

whatever may be, into the woods we must return, as many times as possible.

living in this city, there really is no excuse.


  1. This is a beautiful post. Thanks for taking me with you, the forest was amazing and your documenting was superb.

    1. wow, thanks for the compliment alma. very kind of you to say.

  2. I am up for redoing a Wilderness Club day... you with a couple extra wee ones and me with an extra pup... Kelly