Other friends, more relatives, and Cypress Hills

Sunday, June 7th:  Saskatoon.  Had dinner with Ron and Julie – it was great to catch up with them.  It’s been a year, but seems like yesterday!  Of course we keep up via email. imageimage

Here we are in 2 selfies – 1 taken by me, and 1 by Julie!

Monday, June 8th:  Got our trailer in for service by 8:30 – out by 11 AM!  This meant we could get grocery shopping done!  So we’re ready to go for tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 9th:  Drove to Maple Ck. and got set up in the local campground.  Met Penny and Wilf for dinner  at the Star – had a wonderful meal and visit.  Then drove out to the “farm”.  Bill said he thought he remembered the way – but it turned out he did NOT!   So it was good we did it!

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We saw a moose disappearing into the trees.  Just took a shot with my iPhone – not worth a hoot,  but here it is anyway.  Our first moose of the year. Didn’t get to bed until about 10 PM (about 2 hours later than usual).

Wednesday, June 10th:  This was some day!  Slept in until 5:30 this morning.  When Bill got up about half an hour later and we checked the forecast, it said possible thundershowers in the Cypress Hills area.  So we had 1 coffee each, packed up the trailer – no showers, no makeup – and boogied out to the farm. We could see it had rained overnight so by the time we were getting close to the place, we’d picked up some world famous SK gumbo!  Yikes!  Both on the trailer and the truck.  We could see that someone else had gotten down the road, and as we neared it, Bill heard a motor.  Wouldn’t you know it, Wilf is out here mowing the roads and lawns for us!  So that lovely man power washed the trailer for us and helped us get aligned into the good spot for our satellite to work.

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Here we are all set up next to his little “well house” which is about 12′ X 12′.  We had about half an hour before we had to leave for the Winery to celebrate Karen and Harold’s 48th anniversary.  But we made it right on time.  Had a lovely picnic.  It was a perfect day.

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Here we are.  First the lovely anniversary couple, Harold and Karen – then Penny and Wilf. image

And here we are. We birded on the way back.  Saw and heard lots of birds, but only a few photos.

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There were a pair of Red-tailed Hawks courting and calling to each other – couldn’t get them both in the same shot.

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This Western Meadowlark wouldn’t come out into the open to show us his lovely yellow breast with the black V.  I love it that he’s nestled amongst the pussy toes!

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We saw both antelope and deer.  This lovely buck with the gorgeous velvet antlers stayed lying down when we stopped to take his photo.  Apparently these are “monster” mule deer – according to our financial advisor, Dave.  Honestly they’re the largest I’ve ever seen!

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Here are a few of the hills.

I phoned Mom after we returned – she sounds good and but is looking forward to our return.  I  then got organized in the “house”, had dinner and got to bed pretty late (10 PM) – waaay past our bed time of 8 PM!

Thursday, June 11th:  We walked around the property and found a few new birds, but not many photo ops.  So many Least Flycatchers around, it’s amazing!  A few Yellow-rumped Warblers.  Heard Cassin’s Finch and saw a couple of Townsend’s Solitaires, but the only bird we could shoot was Dark-eyed Junco.

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This pink-sided variety is exclusive to Cypress Hills in all of Canada. image

There are dragonflies around, but not many mosquitoes.  A few butterflies. imageimage

Three-flowered avens are coming to an end.  I jumped out of the truck when Wilf was mowing to stop him from cutting them down.  But they are everywhere!  I remember when they do go to seed, Bill’s Mom (Deen) always said they looked like she did – gray, fluffy and past their prime!  The second shot is an individual flower.  Later, we drove around the town, checking out where propane was available, getting a local bird list and dropping into the general store.

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We found a pair of Red-necked Grebes on the lake in town – this one on a nest. image

Also a Double-crested Cormorant.

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Dappled sunlight came through the trees.

Friday, June 12th:  Walked around the property.  It was a hot sunny day with highs near 30C!  Weather warnings are in effect for thunderstorms, strong winds possibly leading to tornadoes and hail.  But it was so nice in the morning we walked around everywhere Wilf had mowed…and more.

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Chipping Sparrows are common here – and pose nicely, and sing their little rat-a-tat song.

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There are many different looking Yellow-rumped Warblers, though they’re divided into 2 varieties.  This is the most colorful, Audubon’s.  This guy was singing, preening and fluffing (if you’ll excuse the expression)!

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A House Wren is nesting out behind the trailer.  We saw one go into the nest hole while this one sang his beautiful song.

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The wildflowers are everywhere, though we need rain to make more grow.  Here’s lanceleaf springbeauty, early yellow locoweed, sunflower, slender beardtongue and pussy toes (a very dark pink variety I’ve never seen before!).

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Later it started to rain off and on – then hail.  Here’s the view out our skylight.  Those are hailstones – though they didn’t get huge, thank goodness!   Also the dark reflection of the overhanging tree.  Hail covered the ground about an inch apart!  It was good to get lots of rain.

(Second-last posting for the spring.)

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2 Responses to Other friends, more relatives, and Cypress Hills

  1. Am loving all the photos and news about your travels. I really like that photo of you and Bill (with sunglasses), miss you and look forward to seeing you when you get back. Glad you are enjoying yourselves! xoxo ❤

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