A blog about life in the Bella Coola Valley and the Central Coast area of British Columbia for anyone interested in an incredible and rich part of BC's coast. I hope to provide my thoughts about things as simple as weather observations and seasonal issues, to comments about life and the natural history in the Bella Coola Valley, the Central Coast and the west Chilcotin area.
Note: All photos on this blog were taken by the author unless otherwise noted. While the photos and written material are all the property of the author and protected by Copyright, I'm not a professional photographer and you can use the photos if a link or attribution is provided back to my blog. If you have a need to use a particular photo and you want the high resolution file, leave a comment with your email (I won't publish it) and we can discuss what use you intend the photo for. Grizzly
A resident of the Bella Coola Valley and observer of the natural history, geography, resources, regional climate and cultural history of the Bella Coola Valley, Central Coast and the West Chilcotin area of BC.
Around these parts, there are pretty much only four ways that most of the trees end up on the ground. The tree stump in this photo is an obvious example of one that was cut down a long time ago by early settlers. What's interesting about this stump and tree is the size of the Sitka Spruce (Picea sitchensis) coming out of the centre of the stump. It is 75 cm in diameter and more than doing well for the last 80-100 years. The stump or what remains of it after it 'cracked' open some time ago is a Western Red Cedar (Thuja plicata) stump.
It's a great example of the resilience of the forest. When you consider the floods and fires that have gone through and the areas cleared for agriculture and homes, you can see the persistence of the forest to reestablish, even if it means growing on top of someone else's remains.
The summer of 2009 of course saw a fair number of trees in the Bella Coola Valley meet their end through forest fire. The ones that blow down in the Bella Coola Valley are not usually in larger patches like you see on the outer coast where the shallow soils and the big fall and winter storms do their damage. A lot of our valley blow down patches tend to be associated with fringes and fronts of the avalanche tracks from the horrendous wind that avalanches generate.
I've had occasion to experience trees that 'fall down' for no apparent reason as well. Years back my wife and I were camping in a tent in a provincial campsite and in the middle of a dead calm night, a large cottonwood tree chose that moment to come crashing to the ground just behind our tent for no apparent reason, other than it's time had come. It was more than a scary moment, when we heard it start to fall with no time to move and unsure where it was going. Careful when you walk in the woods.
This photo I took today gives you and idea of the kind of weather we are having. It's a pool on the Bella Coola River. It was another nice calm day in the Bella Coola Valley.