Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Arbutus Bluff

Exactly four years ago we spent our first night on Gabriola and this was the view from our lodging at Arbutus Bluff B&B, looking west across the Pylades Channel towards Vancouver Island. It was New Years Eve '04 and Mrs. Snapper and I were on our honeymoon. We couldn't have picked a nicer spot and if you ever find yourself heading to Gabe, we highly recommend giving Bill and Liz a buzz. They'll take good care of you and needless to say, the scenery is a bit of all right.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Monday, December 29, 2008

Oddshots Monday > Arlene's Roof

More Oddshots over at Katney's place

And the Monochrome Monday Maniacs are here

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Sunday Signage > Deer Crossing

I love alliteration and I'm starting to amass a collection of sign photos so today begins a new weekly theme here at GDP, Sunday Signage. In this image, note the "No Hunting" sign in the background.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Day 16

You guessed it. Yep. We got a little more snow yesterday. Gabriola has now been white for 16 days straight. For most of Canada, that's the December norm but from what I understand, it's unprecedented for Gabe. We hiked to the village for groceries and then caught a ride home with an intrepid friend. Actually, the streets weren't bad at all but our truck is still at the end of the driveway, it's path to the pavement blocked by the snowbank the plows left behind. I guess I'll get out there with the shovel and liberate us this afternoon.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Skywatch Friday #10

Skywatch Global Headquarters is here

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Wish

To all people everywhere: Peace on Earth

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Drugstore Reindeer

On a bit of a ruminant roll here at GDP. Elk antlers on Monday, a pair of white tails yesterday and an inflatable reindeer today. Don't know what tomorrow will bring but it won't be moose...

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Visitors

A couple of our neighbours dropped by yesterday and we love company here at Chez Snapper. It occurs to me that some of you cyber visitors may be tiring of all these snow photos but this is what Gabriola looks like these days so there ya go. As has been widely reported, this year Canada will have her first coast-to-coast White Christmas since 1971. Ho ho ho!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Oddshots Monday > 915 Redux

You've seen these antlers before but not like this.

The Monochrome Monday Maniacs are here

And you'll find more Oddshots over at Katney's Place

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Slip Sliding Away

Songs are such good fodder for post titles aren't they?

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Hot Pink Yardstick

11in = 28cm and guess what? We're supposed to get 20cm more snow tonight and tomorrow. The first few flakes are starting to tumble out of the sky as I type. I think this is the latest I've ever posted and that's because our power just came back on after going out around 9pm last night. We had a swell candlelit day here at Chez Snapper, hot bread and tea on the woodstove, a visit from our neighbour, a little walk to the village, just a great Saturday all the way around. And there will be Sunday Soup tomorrow.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Skywatch Friday #9

I think the sky is bluest right after a snowstorm clears. All I had to do was wait for the raven to come along and make it interesting.

See the other global Skywatch pictures here

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Sawhorse and Woodshed

We got another 8-10cm of snow overnight and there's more coming on Sunday. I'm starting to think maybe Donnie the plumber was right...

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Keith Lowe's Danelectro bass set up stage right at The Roxy before the Steve Dawson show

Leica M3, 50mm Summicron, Ilford XP2Super, 1/15s @ f2.8

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Here we have a this-is-what-it-looked-like snapshot of Sunday's snowfall but today's post is as much about the text as it is the image.

Back in Tennessee, we lived at 1800' elevation and winters there were pretty cold for the South. Once we'd committed to moving to Gabriola, we started monitoring the weather so we'd know what to expect in our new home. We kept track of the temps for two full years prior to packing the big yellow truck and what we discovered was that winters on Gabriola are actually milder than those we experienced in Tennessee. The thing is, nobody would believe us! I can't tell you how many times we heard "Oh, you're going to freeze to death up there" at which point we'd calmly present the meteorological data we'd collected only to be scoffed at by our Southern pals. There was one fellow in particular, our plumber, who was totally convinced that our real estate agent had pulled a fast one on us and we were going to discover a frozen wasteland instead of the Shangri-la we'd been describing. Now, I seriously doubt he knows about this blog but Donnie, if you're reading this, don't even be tempted to say "I told you so" because of one slightly snowy photograph!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Oddshots Monday > Sawdust

I have bucked a lot of firewood on this spot and with the temperature at -11C this morning, it was time well spent. The stove is roaring and our house is toasty.

Leica M3, 50mm Summicron, Ilford XP-2super, 1/250 @f16

More Oddshots from around the world at Katney's place

Also, check out the Monochrome Monday page

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Change Of Plans

This isn't the photo that I had in the queue for today. But then the weatherman changed his plans too. We were supposed to get maybe 2-4cm of snow. Well, there's at least 15cm piled up and it's still coming down. Normally, this feline would be outdoors about now but being a native Southerner, he's wisely chosen to hang out on the couch by the woodstove and just observe winter wonderland from the warmth of the living room. The photographer is doing the same.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Watching The Sky

We had our first winter precipitation yesterday. The sky couldn't seem to decide whether it wanted to send down rain, sleet or snow but one thing's for sure. Winter has arrived.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Skywatch Friday #8

Clouds scudding across the December sky reflected in a tide pool at Malaspina Galleries

Skywatch Central is here

Thursday, December 11, 2008

'49 GMC

This beautiful old pickup made it from Saskatchewan to BC but it looks like Gabriola is the end of the line. She may not be up and running but she certainly has a gorgeous patina.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Autumn Leaves #2

After seven monochromes in a row, I guess it's time for a splash of colour.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Most Gabriolans heat with wood which means you'll find a woodshed behind most houses on the island. A typical structure has a tin roof and slat sides which make for nice shadow patterns in the afternoon sunlight.

This image has been in my files unposted for months because it's crap technically. The highlights are totally washed out (see some the the log ends and the end of the axe handle) due to the limitations of my digital camera's autoexposure system. Why post it now? Well, as a counterpoint to yesterday's picture I guess. Maybe I'll reshoot this on film someday and get those highlights perfect but I realized this blog isn't supposed to be about picking photographic nits. It's supposed to be about showing the world what Gabriola looks like so here ya go, warts and all.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Oddshots Monday > Picnic Table At Sunrise

A fully manual camera + black and white film + a handheld incident light meter = the ultimate in photographic control. I suppose the same result is possible in the digital realm but not with my point and shoot cameras.

Leica M3, 50mm Summicron, Ilford XP2-Super

Monochrome Monday HQ is here

More Oddshooters here

Sunday, December 7, 2008

New Books

Another photo from the library. When you enlarge the image, you'll see that there are two shelves for new releases by local authors. Quite a few writers have chosen to live here including at least one Governor General's Award winner.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Photography 101

Even after all these years behind a camera, I still can't resist a nice S curve

Friday, December 5, 2008

Skywatch Friday #7

Arbutus trees photographed yesterday afternoon at the Malaspina Galleries

Click here to see the other Skywatchers from around the globe

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Bookworms R Us

The Gabriola branch has the highest use (checkouts) per capita in the entire Vancouver Island Regional Library system

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

No Complaints

Today's photo was taken last month on Remembrance Day and the veteran's name is Peter Eastick. During World War II, he was on a troop ship in the North Atlantic when it was hit by four torpedoes from German Uboats. The vessel went down in two minutes flat and he was one of only 21 men who managed to get into a lifeboat. It was his 18th birthday. It took rescuers seventeen days to find them and when they did, only nine were still breathing.

So...whenever I catch myself ready to whinge about some trivial thing like not getting tickets to the concert I wanted to attend or my neighbour's barking dog, I just think about Mr. Eastick or someone like him and the complaint never leaves my lips. Works like a charm.

Leica M3, 50mm Summicron, Ilford XP2-Super

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Monday, December 1, 2008

Global Theme Day > Circles/Spheres

Today's global theme is circles/spheres

Click here to view thumbnails for all participants

It's also Monochrome Monday. More about that here