What's It All About, eh?

Cape Breton evokes deep memories and strong emotions for me as well as a deep appreciation for the beauty of my adopted island. My hopes are that you too might find the photos evocative - maybe a view you've not enjoyed before, or an 'Oh I've been there', or if from away that you may be encouraged to visit this fair isle so that you might come to love and breathe Cape Breton as I do. One word about place names that I use - some are completely local usage while others are from maps of Cape Breton that I've purchased over the years. I frequently post travel and other photos that are of interest to me - and hopefully you.

On the right hand side bar find my take on Single Malt whiskey - from how to best enjoy this noble drink to reviews (in a most non-professional manner) of ones that I have tried and liked - or not. Also musings, mine and others, on life in general.

Photographs are roughly 98%+ my own and copy-righted. For the occasional photo that is borrowed, credit is given where possible - recently I have started posting unusual net photographs that seem unique. Feel free to borrow any of my photos for non-commercial use, otherwise contact me. Starting late in 2013 I have tried to be consistent in identifying my photographs using ©smck on all out of camera photos I personally captured - (I often do minor computer changes such as 'crop' or 'shadow' etc but usually nothing major), and using
©norvellhimself on all photos that I have played around with in case it might not be obvious. Lately I have dropped the ©smck and have watermarked them with the blog name.

COMMENTS are appreciated as feedback is the driving energy of blogging - And if you like this site please pass it along to a friend. Thanks!

NOTE: TO ENLARGE PHOTO, CLICK ON SAME - If using Firefox also click f11 - photos will fill the screen ...... ----------------------------------- ......TRANSLATION BUTTON AT TOP OF LEFT COLUMN!

Fallen Limb Exposes Pileated Woodpecker Nest

The inside of the limb spills the fine wood chips from inside the nest

an overview of the whole detached limb and nest cavity

the opposite outside of the limb shows entrance opening with surrounding bark buildup

Peat Bog Formation

10 July 2012
While hiking in Gros Morne park in Newfoundland we crossed long expanses of rough shrub with numerous dead conifers dotted here and there.  The tourist informational display above gives some insight into how the peaty bogs are building even higher than the ridges which originally surrounded them. 

Giant Stick Insect - Long Thought Extinct

photo from link below


[p.s.  thanks to my son steering me to this on one of his Facebook postings]

"I all"

found item on internet - but love the old English

Newfoundland Highway Garden ,

July 2012

As we drove along the mile after mile of undeveloped land we noticed plot after plot of gardens like these pictured here, all miles from human habitation. I am not certain of the details but from conversation with local people at our various stops it seems that most homes are on rocky land near harbours with little soil suitable for growing vegetables.  So along some of the highways that are built across large areas of heath-like soil, people are allowed to do these gorgeous gardens - with the fences to keep out the wilderness herbivores, deerm, moose, coyotes, etc.  As with fire-wood, sledges and like that we have seen along the roads there seems to be a decent honor system so that the toilers can reap the rewards.

Iceberg Spotting, St. Carols, Newfoundland - III

- the iceberg seems to be drifting to the right into French Bay

more of the lovely understory between the rock outcroppings

it is hard to judge distance and size but the tour boat in the left background gives some perspective to the berg

here the boat has passed behind the iceberg and is headed to the far shore of French Bay

the 'slob' ice noticed in the previous photo at the bottom is shown in more detail here

12 July 2012    © smck

Dinner At The Tidal Demarcation

23 April 2013    ©  smck
On my way back from a presentation on local economy by Anirbam Basu I stopped by one of my favorite local sites for seeing The Great Blue Heron.  Here where the North East River has its' demarcation from tidal to non- tidal seems to be a great spot for these whirly birds to seek food.

Back Creek To The Old Mill

22 April 2013     ©  smck
The North East River continues upstream to the left while back creek is on the right.  It was fed in years past by the over-flow from the mill race and the creek coming in from Beacon Hill - which same still flows but the mill race has long been abandoned as a fading memory.  It is a shame that a destination town such as North East has let this vital bit of past slip away.

Black Walnut Tree at Sundown

22 April 2013    © smck

Male Red-bellied Woodpecker

20 April 2013      © smck
"The common woodpecker over much of the southeastern United States, it is much scarcer farther north but has expanded its breeding range to New York (state) and southern New England and Minnesota/Michigan in the mid west - it is one of the woodpeckers that habitually store food", from The Audubon Society Field Guide  to North American Birds [Eastern Region]

Two Painted Turtles - Chrysemys picta

17 April 2013    ©  smck
The first turtles appeared about 200 million years ago - long before there were dinosaurs.  Their shell is incorporated from an expanded rib system. And unlike other reptiles they have no teeth.  These Painted turtles are carnivorous when young and become herbivorous when mature.

updates will be coming

I have a new computer and Windows 8 - I am sure that like any peon in the ranks that I will eventually learn to use both the new computer and windows8 - but right now all I can think is that intuitive is a relative term and that modern corporations are running rough shod over the peons with accept this or else statements to agree to to continue - along with lack of even a rudimentary set of instructions - and I consider myself to be somewhat capable of solving many modes of existence but Microsoft leaves me out in the cold.  

Artist Adolphe-William Bouguereau (1825-1905)

If you have any interest in classical painting check out this - to me- unknown artist and his prodigious output of beautiful canvases.

Iceberg Spotting St Carols,Newfoundland - II

The bottom photograph is of the ground cover - beautiful and fragile - that we were crossing to approach the shoreline of French Bay, so we kept to the ever present rock out-croppings as much as we could.  The photos of Carol and I are some of the few tourist mug shots that we did on the trip (and I am glad we did do a few).

Saved From Destruction

12 April 2013
This glorious oak was miraculously saved from destruction when the multi-lane highway was suddenly given a wide middle for a reverse direction loop.  So whether providentially or purposely it still stands giving many a motorist a feeling of grandeur of life.

Tree Trimmers Working Hard On Black Hill Lane - II

The bucket man moves to a new position

then in position the bucket-man becomes the saw-man and sends the pine saw-dust flying in a cloud of spray

With the slight lean of the tree aiding, the almost sawed through chunk of trunk succumbs to a slight shove
10 April 2013                    - and down it goes!!!

There Is Always A Beautiful Scene

11 April 2013
I had been to visit my mom who now resides in the Alzheimer's ward of a local rehabilitation center and as I walked toward my truck in the parking area as I headed back to home, the  large tree silhouetted against the sky and framed by opening blossoms on what I believe are crab-apple trees just drew my eye.  In a few weeks this same scene will be in full leaf with blossoms gone and this mystical view will then await another year.

Tree Trimmers Working Hard On Black Hill Lane

Parking my pick-up out by the mailboxes,  I get a nice photo of the high-bucket guy taking out trees from the top

A close-up as he moves to a new location

10 April 2013  -  and here the saw man in the bucket saws another whack of tree-top
NOTE:  another set or so of tree trimmer photos will go up later today or tomorrow!