My Boots n Me is your inspirational source for hundreds of day and weekend trips around Vancouver and British Columbia, Canada. For families and photographers British Columbia has something to offer everyone. Stop awhile and savor what Mother Nature has in store for you.
You will never be disappointed.

~~Karen Cooper~~

BC, Rain and Waterfalls

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Friday, February 28, 2014

The First Signs of Spring in Vancouver



I don't really have a "favorite" time of year.
Every season has it's own beauty and enchantment.
Seeing the first robins in spring is
always a thrill, though, and a
sign of new life and new
beginnings always
lifts your spirits.
Even the robins seem excited
about the blue skies 
and newly budding trees.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Merritt and the Great Northern Adventure


I have dreamed of going to the great northern reaches
of British Columbia for years. My visions
of vast open wild spaces have
haunted me most of my life.

I am lucky enough to be able
to travel this beautiful province of
British Columbia and in September 2013 my
dream was about to become reality.

First stop along the way
was south-central BC and the Nicola Valley.
Experiencing the immensity of 
the grasslands near Merritt is awe inspiring.
And it's quiet here. I mean .... really, really quiet.

You can hear the wind rustling the
grass in huge swaths that sweep across
the hillsides and valleys.The occasional rock or
tree breaks the rhythm of nature, heat waves
undulate and caress the blue skies.

I stayed overnight at Marquart Lake.
The skies slowly dissolve into an inky black,
the soft nighttime calls of an owl resting
in a nearby tree remain within my heart.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Best Places to See in BC - Kitmat Sitka Spruce



I can't get enough of the old growth trees in 
British Columbia.
Standing at the foot of this gigantic 500 yr old 
Sitka Spruce tree in Kitimat, BC
was totally awe inspiring.
This tree is the oldest known living organism
in the Kitimat Valley.
It was registered at the largest living
sitka spruce tree in BC in 1983.
It measures 50.3 meters (165 feet -- really!) tall
and 3.4 meters in diameter.
You have to imagine what this tree has seen
and been through in it's lifetime.
The age of quiet and solitude, explorers to
British Columbia, storms and unbearable 
weather changes, then dodging the cut of chainsaws
and logging. 
The feel of the bark under you fingers is rough and
textured, weather worn and vibrant.
Full of life and living.
I can only imagine what the next 
500 years will bring her.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Best Places to See in BC - Stuart Lake Pictographs



On the eastern side of Stuart Lake 
in British Columbia, Canada
are some pretty amazing pictographs.
I was lucky enough to have an idea where to
look for them from some very nice
people from the Murray Ridge
Nordic Ski Club.
Situated on a rock face of the cliffs overlooking
Stuart Lake, you can well
understand how this location
must have had some significance
the people from our past.
Not only is it beautiful and serene
but must have been rich in wildlife
and fish from Stuart Lake.
Another British Columbia moment
that I treasure.

Best Places to See in BC - Stuart Lake



Stuart Lake is one of the prettiest lakes I have 
visited in BC. Both the
 and the town of Fort St. James
are situated on the lake near the outlet of Stuart River.
Stuart Lake is 66 kms long and 10 km wide.
In the winter months the cross country skiing
track is put in on the lake by the Murray Ridge
Nordic Ski Club.
You can ski for miles on the lake with the sun
shining on the pristine landscape,
the air crisp and clean,
and views of the distant hills and mountains
as a backdrop. Stunning to say the least.
I can't wait to see Stuart Lake in the summertime.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Best Places to See in BC - Nisga'a Lava Fields


British Columbia has some of the most
diverse landscapes on earth.
is located in the Nass Valley region in
northwestern BC.
Because the Nisga'a do not have a written history,
the volcanic explosion is estimated to have occured
between 1750 and 1775.
This park is quite impressive, both in size (18,000 sq kms)
and in the sheer beauty of destruction.
The lava flow changed the coures of the 
Nass and Tseax Rivers, 
dammed a stream to make what is now Lava Lake,
 and killed approximately 2,000 people.
Today the park contains waterfalls, lakes, pools
and some very impressive lava features
including lava tubes, tree molds, cinder cones and caves.

Definitely a place to put on your Must Visit
List in British Columbia.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Best Places to See in BC - Fort St. James National Historic Site


One of the most fascinating places
I have visited recently in British Columbia
The fort was founded in 1806 by Simon Fraser,
the intrepid explorer, for the Northwest Company
which was later to become 
The Hudson's Bay Company.
Fort St. James has the largest
in Canada.
Though the tours of the site
are not operating in the winter months,
 the site itself is beyond beautiful.
Situated on the shores of Stuart Lake,
you can only imagine what the original settlers
must have thought of this paradise.
Though life would have been difficult
in this remote area, the scenery and wild life
would have well made up for it.
I spent several hours wandering
the pathways of these beautiful 
old buildings on a sunny winter day.
Visions of bygone days danced in
front of me along the pathways,
  doorways and windows
warped with time and memories.

Best Places to See in BC - Dawson Creek


One of the best places to explore in BC
is Dawson Creek, Mile 0
of the Alaska Highway.
Named in honor after Dr. George Mercer Dawson, 
Dawson Creek is also
known as the capital of the Peace River District.
The 16 foot tall iron statue of a surveyor was
created by Karl Mattson from scap metal
he found on nearby farms.
True in dress and equipment to surveryors
from the 1942 era, this surveyor 
points north along the route of 
the Alaska Highway.
The pioneer spirit of the North
is alive and well here in northwestern BC.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Things to Do in British Columbia -- Enjoy the Weather


You just can't beat British Columbia
in the sunshine. 
Clear skies and temperatures in the mid 20's C
today.
Doing any activity outside is a pure joy,
from sight seeing the local mountains,
taking a nature walk, 
or sitting in the shade enjoying 
the back yard garden.
Whatever you choose to do in 
British Columbia, this
weather can bring you pure joy
and some pretty impressive vistas.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Things to Do in British Columbia - Milky Way Viewing


British Columbia offers us some pretty spectacular
dark nights to view the Milky Way.
The crisp clear winter skies are great for
amazing star gazing, it's almost unimaginalble
how many stars are really out there.

Always best to have some back up when
trying to photograph the winter night skies,
lots of patience, hot chocolate and boot warmers come to mind.
This particular shot was done near
Tumbler Ridge, BC at -19C.

A lot of hopping around to keep warm was
 done for this one, plus a promise
to an upgrade in the winter mittens department.
To gaze in awe at the night skies is well 
worth the effort here or anywhere 
the skies allow your mind to wander
to infinity and back.

Things to Do in British Columbia - Bird Watching


The most striking thing about the Spotted Towhee
are their red eyes.
They like to live in scattered shrubs 
and thickets which abound here in British Columbia.
I get to spend a lot of time in nature
and these birds are always a joy to be around.
Though Towhee's are considered resident birds in British Columbia, 
their distinctive call heralds the beginning of
spring for me, of new life around us 
and life yet to come.
I wait anxiously for the their first brood
to make their appearance.


Friday, April 19, 2013

Best Places to See in BC - Kiskatinaw Bridge

Karen Cooper - Kiskatinaw Bridge
Kiskatinaw Bridge, Alaska Highway, British Columbia

 The Kiskatinaw Bridge is located before the Mile 21 marker 
along the old Alaska Highway
in British Columbia.
The Kiskatinaw Bridge was the first curved wooden bridge
built in Canada
and is still in use today.
Built in 1942-43 it stands
30 meters (100) feet above the Kiskatinaw River, 
a tributary of the Peace River.
It curves 9 degrees along its length and is 162.5 meters (534 feet) long.
Quite the view from the bridge deck, the river meanders
its way gently through the rolling hills
below bringing to mind wandering dinosaurs
in ages past. 





Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Best Places to See in BC - Gitwangak Battle Hill

Gitwangak Battle Hill 
National Historic Site of Canada
(formerly known as Kitwanga Fort)
is located in northwestern 
British Columbia along highway
37 - the Stewart-Cassier highway.

Built in the 1700's by the
Gitwangak First Nations people 
the hill was used as a fortified
location for homes and
a site to launch raids against 
the Nass River and coastal peoples.
The indigenous trading routes of British Columiba
included the Grease Trails, named after
the small fish called eulachon
which run in the Nass and Skeena Rivers.
The fish were boiled to extract their oil and
were traded with other Native groups
that did not have spawning rivers in their
territories.



Best Places to See in BC - The Alaska Highway

Mile "0" of the Alaska Highway begins
in Dawson Creek, BC.
Construction started on the highway during World War II
to connect Alaska to the United States through Canada.
Completed in 1942, it stretched 2,700 km. 
Due to reconstruction and repair today the highway is actually
2,232 km and ends in Delta Junction, Alaska.
The first 987 km (613 miles)
are constructed through British Columbia.

You can still find historic mile postings along the highway
and the Canadian metric system has warranted the change to
signposts being in kilometers. Most residents along the highway
refer to their location as "mile x along the highway".

The history of the Alaska Highway is one of heroism and
  determination. I visited the 
There is a fascintaing
display of old photographs taken from the road building era at the
The Alaska Highway should be on everyone's
"must visit while in BC" list.