Maui

Looking towards Lanai, Jason Landry, 2005
Looking towards Lanai, Jason Landry, 2005

Through the hard work of my wife—and the generous recognition of her company—we’ve managed to score a quick trip to Maui next week. It will be our first trip back since getting married there in 2005, and yes, I know how cliché a wedding in Hawai’i sounds, but I’m a Canadian and she’s a Kiwi, so it was an obvious middle ground.

We’ve lined up some surfing and some paddleboarding, the rest of the time will be devoted to relaxation and plate lunches. Goodbye rain.

Place Names

Map detail, Banff National Park Brochure, 1939
Map detail, Banff National Park Brochure, 1939

Having spent most of my life in Alberta and much of it in Calgary, I am very familiar with the place names and natural features shown in this map detail. In my mind’s eye I can see the frozen waterfall on the east face of Cascade Mountain. I can see the near vertical line etched into the mountain opposite the turn off to what was Sunshine Lodge. I can see the Elk grazing in the fields south of the airport. I wish I could return more often.

Burns Night

Every Burns Night, I find myself thinking back to 1998 and my trip to Scotland. Shortly after arriving in Glasgow, I embarked on a 4-day hike along the last half of the West Highland Way, from Bridge of Orchy to Fort William. Almost every other hiker we saw was having their gear trucked from hotel to hotel, but we carried our packs and tent across the moors up and down the passes of the highlands. It was a tiring, amazing experience through a beautiful landscape.

Cock-a-leekie soup & bannock, Jason Landry, 2012Cock-a-leekie soup & bannock, Jason Landry, 2012
Cock-a-leekie soup & bannock, Jason Landry, 2012

Tonight I made a very simple version of Cock-a-leekie soup and bannock. The kids and I ate a comforting meal, listened to The Tannahill Weavers and talked about visiting Scotland to do a little camping, hiking and exploring. My son had two bowls of soup, my daughter said she loved the music and I have no doubt they would both enjoy Scotland. I love dreaming with my kids.

Manning Provincial Park

Every year, friends of ours organize a group trip to Manning Provincial Park, a mountain park of over 70,000 hectares just a few hours east of Vancouver. It’s a winter wonderland with downhill skiing, nordic skiing, snowshoeing, skating, tobogganing… add a cabin, good friends, food, drink and you can start to see why we go every year.

A good sign, Jayne Landry, 2012Across the valley, Jason Landry, 2012Raven watching, Jason Landry, 2012The kids & I, Jayne Landry, 2012On the trail, Jason Landry, 2012
Fun in the snow, Jason & Jayne Landry, 2012

A walk in the forest

The forest, Jason Landry, 2012The forest, Jason Landry, 2012The forest, Jason Landry, 2012
The forest, Jason Landry, 2012

One big advantage of living is Vancouver is the ability to go from house to forest in about 20 minutes. Yesterday we went for a short walk in Lynn Valley, next to the Lower Seymour Conservation Reserve. It was a cool, drizzly, grey day—a picture-perfect example of winter in the Pacific Northwest.