Sunday, February 23, 2014

Olympic Gold for Canada!

The final Olympic men's hockey game started at 4 AM Vancouver time. Many were up and watching the game at local sports bars. We opted to stay home and get up to watch the final period. It was a great game and we won 3-0 against Sweden. We were at the condo downtown Vancouver and shortly after the win we saw the reflection of the Olympic flame on a building. When out for our morning stroll with Fergus we saw the flame in the distance. The Olympic torch which sits in Jack Poole Plaza was lit throughout the games when Canada won gold.
The Olympic Torch in the distance - it snowed all weekend but there was very little accumulation in the city. 

More accumulation in the garden at the house.

Canada won a total of 25 Olympic medals at the Sochi Games. 10 Gold, 10 Silver and 5 Bronze. After all, the majority of the country was brought up in a land of ice and snow!
Well done Team Canada. 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Snow Shoeing at Mt. Seymour

Winter has finally provided the Vancouver area with snow and there is more to come! We were keen to hit our local mountains for some snow fun. Friday night Neil, Dave and I went to Mt. Seymour to snow shoe. The conditions were perfect. Plenty of fresh snow and clear skies with great views of Vancouver below.
We went on the trail to first pump (oops! we thought we were doing the winter route to Dog Mountain - missed the turn) for a new adventure in the dark. Dave and I with the city lights below.
 Heading back down with the city lights below - it is so nice!
 Saturday Neil and I had a good active day. We attended a Yoga class in Coal Harbour, ran on the seawall in the snow and headed back up Mt. Seymour for more snow shoeing once dark, this time to Dog Mountain. It was a winter wonderland - it was snowing heavily and -7 C. There is something magical about going out in the dark. First, no people!, the silence the snow brings and it is stunning to see the trees flocked with snow with the headlamp lighting the way. 
 Plenty of fresh powder - this is Neil's pole!
Thanks Fergus for helping with the blog!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Ottawa - Canada's Capital

Neil had a 2 day meeting in Ottawa this past week. We added a few more days to explore the nations capital city - it was a first visit for both of us. We've been to Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City, Halifax and Charlottetown but never to Ottawa. The weather was cold (for us) at minus 10 for daytime highs and down to minus 25 overnight. This was balmy compared to the minus 30 temps the city had been experiencing prior to our arrival. There was plenty of snow, 180 cm. Winterlude, Ottawa's Winter festival was on while we were there, attracting thousands of locals and visitors alike over its three week duration. Winterlude is a festival of all things winter that centers activities around the Rideau Canal. The Rideau Canal is the worlds largest skating rink. Here are some of the highlights of our visit:
The Parliament Buildings

Skating on the Rideau Canal
Winterlude Ice Sculptures
Canadian Flags
Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica, Ottawa. It was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1990.
Chateau Laurier
Overlooking the Rideau Canal
On the Rideau Canal at night.
24 Sussex Drive - home of the Prime Minister and his family.
De-icing of the plane so we could take off from the Ottawa Airport. Looking forward to a return visit to Canada's capital.
Hope you are enjoying the Olympics - Go Canada!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

My Running Companion

Fergus (dog) is now over a year old. He joins us regularly during the week for shorter runs. This weekend he joined me for 2 hours on the North Shore on Saturday. Neil and Dave went ahead, Fergus and I did our own route. Sunday we ran for 1.5 hours at Hayward Lake and then another 25 minutes late in the day.  Fergus is a good trail runner - he  tackles the trail with much confidence. He has a good pace and endurance. The biggest challenge is the other dogs who are not under their owners control on the trails. We watch out for them and I do not hesitate to pick him up if the beast approaching is out of control. I think I have a new weekend trail buddy ;-)