Saturday, February 01, 2014

Prairies in Winter

We left Saskatoon today by car, headed south to climb and hike. I remembered several years ago seeing a Snowy Owl on a similar trip so I was watching the fenceposts and telephone poles, but I wasn't really optimistic since we've done lots of winter trips without seeing any.

But between Rosetown and Swift Current I spotted a white blob on a telephone pole. I got Shelley to stop and turn around. Even knowing it was there, it was hard to spot it again.

I had the long lens ready in my camera bag so I pulled it out. It was cloudy and hard to get a good shot of the white owl against the white sky, but it was still exciting to get some photographs. It would look away from me, but as soon as I'd kick my foot against the ground it would turn towards me.

Snowy Owl

I moved around to the other side of the pole so the wires weren't in the way as much. From the new angle you could see some it wasn't completely white. It's hard to imagine these owls catching enough mice to live on when the ground is covered in snow.

Snowy Owl

Just before Swift Current the sun started to emerge from under the clouds and light up the fields.

prairies in winter

prairies in winter

The prairies in winter are pretty bleak, but they have their own beauty. Not much signs of life except for ravens, deer, and if you're lucky a snow owl :-) (And rabbits and fox and coyote, but we didn't see any of those today.)

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