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Manning CampingGo to Slide Show

The return of the fall camping trip.


Camping at Lightning Lakes

So Much Stuff In ACar
It used to be that, as a group, we had one trip out together a year - a camping trip on the labour day weekend.  The first one to Princess Margaret Provincial Park (1992) had probably 8 people at it.   Our second trip was to Goldstream (1993 - no known photos - perhaps 6 people), our next wasn't until Strathcona in 1996, again with 8 people.   In 1997, six of us went to Manning Park (my first trip with a real camera).  Sept 1998 saw six of us on a trip to Horne Lake and in 1999 nine of us did a bike/car trip to Pender Island.  For the following 6 years, we didn't really have a Labour Day camping trip.   This year, I had some time to plan and floated the idea of a camping trip.  I had to book additional camp sites to accommodate the response - 14 people wanted to go and 11 actually made it in the end.  We were in for a good time.

Lunch In Camp
With 11 people going, it's hard to do a lot of things.  We needed a total of 4 vehicles to accommodate different people needing to arrive and leave at different times.  The night before we left, I went around and picked up gear to lighten the load on the other vehicles.  I wound up with a very packed car!  Helen, Mark and I were in the first vehicle out (arriving around noon) so we had to look out for our own lunch.  After some preliminary setup, Sean and Catherine arrived and we went our first adventure.


Forest With Smoke
As we drove up the Fraser valley, we noticed it wasn't particularly clear but that's not exceptional for the higher end of the valley.  As we got around hope and started heading up into the pass, I noticed the haze actually got worse.  Turns out the big forest fire burning just over the border with the US was sending much of it's smoke North and our valley was taking quite a bit of it.    While it is hard on the nose and eyes, it made for a lovely soft fog look to much of the weekends photography.   We went out for a hike around Flash lake.


False Solomons Seal
It's been a long dry summer so I wasn't expecting to see much for flowers at this low altitude.  There were some berries (we had a good lot of salmon berries) and rarely a flower but most plants were in the "wilting" stage.

Bunch Berries In FlowerBunch Berries In Berries

Logs Lying In ShallowsChannel Between Lakes

Using the smoke to photographic effect proved to be a bit of a challenge.  While the human eye will often pick up the subtle changes in contrast that you see in "God Rays", cameras have a harder time showing the effect.  That said, the hazed out backgrounds makes it easier to concentrate on the subject in panoramas.

Rainbow Bridge


Helen Cooking Sausages

To be honest, one of my biggest concerns was food.  Feeding 11 people from camp stoves, outdoors is potentially quite a problem.  We spent (I thought) quite a bit of time scrubbing the menu and things worked out pretty well.  What did surprise me was the sheer ammount of fuel we went through - probably close to 6 liters of fuel for the weekend.

Andrea And Sean Making SandwichesPlaying Cards At Table
 


Hairy Woodpecker
The Lighting lakes camp ground isn't exactly wilderness camping - there are flush toilets, warm showers (free even), camp fire pits (and we weren't in a fire ban even though the place was tinder dry) and the BC Parks trademark "hard as rock because it is rock" camping pads.  That said, we did have visitors on the weekend who were looking for hand outs or to be just left alone.

Crow In TreeFluffy Squirrel Stole Dorito

So what do you to with a long weekend in Manning Park? 

Hiking to Buckhorn Camp

I've been hiking in the meadows at Manning before and I was amazed to see how dead the meadows are at this time of the year.  It's been a long hot summer and the meadows are hurting for water - almost without exception, the flowers are gone.  The difference between here and Garibaldi two weeks earlier is striking.

Hiking Into Meadow
My theory was that we were going for a walk around a close alpine trails (perhaps 3 to 5km) but everyone seemed keen on a longer hike so we packed the sandwiches and walked out Buckhorn camp - perhaps 5km from the car park. 

Hikers At Sign


Depending on which side of the mountain the local shade of the trees we would sometimes find valleys with flowers.  This area is sub alpine - we would need to go higher to hit true moonscape alpine. 

Field Of Cotton GrassDepression With FlowersDaisies In SunWhite Pasqueflower In Sun

Whisky Jack Taking Food Off Helens Hat
In fairly reasonable time (it was downhill) we made it to the tent pads at Buckhorn camp.  This camp site doesn't have a good water supply (as Sean and Jesse once discovered) so were well prepared and brought a good supply of water.  Karen quickly discovered that the Grey Jays (Whiskey Jack's) were quite hungry and would take offerings placed on other peoples hats.  That game went on for a while. 

Bunch Of People At LunchWhiskey Jack On Tree

Hiking up hill back is kind of strange (there are few hikes in BC like that) but we made it back to the parking lot (hot) and were glad for the air conditioning in the car for the ride back to camp.

A Canoe around the Lakes

Last time we came to Manning (I believe some of us were still in school) we camped at Mule Deer camp site and didn't really dig into the lightning lakes area until our last day.  On several trips since, I've seen the Canoe rental place (and Canoe's scattered around the lake) so this time we decided to rent canoe's ourselves.  The place didn't flinch when we wanted 5 canoe's - I believe their fleet of canoes could probably stretch end to end from one side of the lake to the other.

Helen And JinIMGP 0114_Smoke Through Trees

IMGP 0103_Mark And Eric CanoingIMGP 0125_Sean And Catherine In Canoe

  The camp fire smoke was back so any view was abbreviated.  It didn't make for good Canoeing, but it makes for great photography - most of the scenes have a warm tone and foggy backgrounds.  We didn't have much of a plan, but we did Canoe pretty much as far as we could and then perhaps a little bit further.  Sean suggested a mear 500m portage but Helen's eye's told me that wasn't going to happen.
 


IMGP 0127_Andrea And Bob In TreesCanoing Around Smokey PointIMGP 0137_Boaters Near The End
 
The smoke didn't make for the most enjoyable time - after two hours we were happy to return the boats and persue something a little less energetic.

A Game of Bocce

Jesse brought a Bocce ball set and we made out like Italian Senior citizens.  We transfered the "drinks" into plastic cups and played a bunch of games on the field next to our camp site.  The game is quite fun - not very intense with plenty of opportunities to socialize. 

  Jin ThrowingEric ThrowingHelen With ABall

I don't think we have any idea who actually won, but that's kind of the point isn't it?

Sunsets at the Lookout
  Clarks NutcrackerClarks Nutcracker On Ground
One of my favorite parts of Manning Park is the road up to the meadows.  As I understand it, the road was built for the BC Hydro signal towers and it's just convenient that they are located in beautiful meadows.  On two nights we drove up to the look out to watch the sunset.  I was expecting the forest fires to lead to beautiful sunsets and I wasn't exactly disappointed, but I still didn't get what I was looking for.
 


To tell you the truth, I'm not really sure how to take a good photo of sunset.  Generally, I like to use the orange light to warm up other objects, but just shooting a sunset without recognizable foreground elements is actually kind of boring. 

Sunset Lit Smoke CloudSun Setting Behind RidgeOrangy Clouds

  Moon Over Mountains
I was really hoping this sunset light would do more with the particle filled air - I was hoping for some massive display of god rays or something else massive.  With the sun setting behind mountains, my dreams didn't really come true - more of a whimper.  That said, there was still some nice things to see at sunset.



Nights in camp
Andrea And Bob With CampfireJesse With Campfire
When you are back country camping, everything weighs and you try to be frugal - batteries, jackets, entertainment and just being tired all push toward going to bed shortly after the sun goes down.  With car camping you have full sized lanterns, hot chocolate, board games and the fun of each others company - you can last a while longer.


Jesse Making APlay
Eric brought a travel scrabble set so one night a few people sat around and argued about how probability had cramped there English style. 


Playing Travel ScrabbleMark Happy With PlayStylin' With The Sake Cup

And eventually, all good things must end. 

Smokey Road
Monday morning we packed up (better than we usually do) and by 10am we on the road back to Vancouver.  Sean and Catherine, Bob and Andrea had left the evening before so we were down to 2 vehicles and 7 people.  Before we drove all the way back to Vancouver we decided to stop in at the Othello Tunnels just outside of hope.


The Othello Tunnels

I've been to the Othello Tunnels a number of times before but most recently they have been closed for upgrades.  What I read on the internet led me to believe they were now open so we decided to stop on the way home to check it out.

Us In Front Of TunnelThree Tunnel SectionsTunnel Bridge Tunnel

The tunnels are indeed open - and quite busy.  The upgrades seem to be a retaining walls and possibly scaling on the rocks to get the loose material out of the way.  (There were moss lines on the rock that had no reason to be there).  The walk is quite nice - the tunnel sections and bridge sections are in good repair and the contrast of the dark and the bright sunshine is cool to try and photograph.


Jesse And Jin On Wall
After our walk we had lunch at the picnic tables (unfortunately right in the middle of the parking lot - no view at all) and commenced the two plus hour drive back to Vancouver.   It was a great weekend - thanks everyone!
Canyon Pano


Logs Lying In Shallows
Tags: lake
Jesse Making APlay
Hikers At Sign
Tags: hiking, sign
Hairy Woodpecker
Species: Picoides villosus (Hairy Woodpecker)
Tags: bird
Channel Between Lakes
Tags: lake, reflection
Whisky Jack Taking Food Off Helens Hat
Person: Helen
Species: Perisoreus canadensis (gray jay)
Tags: bird
Clarks Nutcracker On Ground
Species: Nucifraga columbiana (Clark's Nutcracker)
Tags: bird, sunset
Stylin' With The Sake Cup
Person: Eric
Tags: camping, game, sake
Sun Setting Behind Ridge
Tags: sunset
Smokey Road
Tags: depth cueing, road, smoke
Playing Cards At Table
Person: Catherine, Eric, Jesse, Jin, Karen, Mark, Sean
Tags: camping, game
Clarks Nutcracker
Species: Nucifraga columbiana (Clark's Nutcracker)
Tags: BC fauna, bird, shallow depth of field
Playing Travel Scrabble
Person: Helen
Tags: game
Whiskey Jack On Tree
Species: Perisoreus canadensis (gray jay)
Tags: bird
IMGP 0137_Boaters Near The End
Person: Catherine, Eric, Jesse, Mark, Sean
Tags: canoeing
Daisies In Sun
Tags: flower
Helen Cooking Sausages
Person: Helen
Tags: cooking
Eric Throwing
Person: Eric
Bunch Berries In Berries
Species: Cornus canadensis (Canadian Dogwood, Canadian bunchberry)
Tags: fruit
Forest With Smoke
Tags: depth cueing, forest, smoke, trail
IMGP 0127_Andrea And Bob In Trees
Person: Andrea, Bob
Tags: canoeing
Bunch Berries In Flower
Species: Cornus canadensis (Canadian Dogwood, Canadian bunchberry)
Tags: flower
Three Tunnel Sections
Tags: tunnel
False Solomons Seal
Tags: plant
Lunch In Camp
Tags: camping, cooking, lunch
Andrea And Sean Making Sandwiches
Tags: cooking
Sunset Lit Smoke Cloud
Tags: cloud, sunset
Tunnel Bridge Tunnel
Tags: bridge, tunnel
Moon Over Mountains
Altitude: 1674m (5492 feet)
Location: Go To...
Tags: moon, mountain
Mark Happy With Play
Person: Mark
Canyon Pano
Tags: canyon, river
Depression With Flowers
Tags: alpine, flowers, meadow
Jesse With Campfire
Person: Jesse
Fluffy Squirrel Stole Dorito
Species: Tamiasciurus hudsonicus (Red Squirrel)
Tags: BC fauna
Orangy Clouds
Tags: sunset
Helen With ABall
Bunch Of People At Lunch
Person: Andrea, Bob, Catherine, Helen, Jesse, Jin, John, Mark
Altitude: 1806m (5925 feet)
Location: Go To...
Field Of Cotton Grass
Species: Eriophorum angustifolium (narrowleaf cottonsedge, tall cotton-grass)
Tags: alpine, flowers, meadow
Us In Front Of Tunnel
Person: Eric, Helen, Jesse, Jin, John, Karen, Mark
Altitude: 1821m (5974 feet)
Location: Go To...
Tags: tunnel
So Much Stuff In ACar
Person: Helen, John, Mark
Altitude: 1270m (4166 feet)
Location: Go To...
Tags: camping
White Pasqueflower In Sun
Species: Pulsatilla occidentalis (White Pasqueflower)
Tags: alpine, plant
Helen And Jin
Person: Helen, Jin
Rainbow Bridge
Tags: bridge
IMGP 0125_Sean And Catherine In Canoe
Tags: canoeing
IMGP 0103_Mark And Eric Canoing
Person: Eric, Mark
Tags: canoeing
Jin Throwing
Tags: camping, game
Crow In Tree
Species: Corvus brachyrhynchos (American Crow)
Tags: BC fauna, bird
Canoing Around Smokey Point
Tags: canoeing, smoke
Jesse And Jin On Wall
Person: Jesse, Jin
Tags: canyon
IMGP 0114_Smoke Through Trees
Tags: depth cueing, forest, smoke
Andrea And Bob With Campfire
Person: Andrea, Bob
Hiking Into Meadow
Tags: alpine, hiking, meadow, twin
Tags: bird(6), canoeing(5), camping(5), sunset(4), alpine(4), smoke(4)
People: Mark(7), Helen(7), Eric(6), Jesse(6), Jin(5), John(3)
From: John Harvey Photo > John Harvey Photo - Camping > Manning Camping
From: John Harvey Photo > Manning Camping

Nice to read about your camping adventures. You also have some great photos as well as good "memory snaps" We were just up at Buckhorn camp this past weekend. Perhaps one day we'll run into each other! Cheers!
Brian Hampson
Tuesday, September 1st, 2009 at 13:44:09

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Last Modified Tuesday, June 9th, 2009 at 01:14:54 Edit
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