July 11, 2017

Canada: My Great Outdoors by Sharon Espeseth

Free Photos

For this topic, I'm recalling some of my outdoor experiences somewhere in Canada. Although I am not an outdoor guru, I've enjoyed some wonderful times and special moments en plein aire.

My Family Home
* Making mud pies
* Using mud to make our skin dark
* Ice skating with bob skates on our lake at Lake View Farm
* Snow angels and snowmen
* Playing with my sister
Free Photo: istock.com

Homesteading in east central Saskatchewan
* Evening walks with our Dad while Mom helped out teacher with personal care
* The raft Dad made for us that we poled around our small, fresh-water pond
* Trying to build a log cabin out of skinny poplars
* Riding toboggan behind our horse
* Swinging from tree to tree on our way to school

* Bike riding through Glenora where streets were paved
* Big family picnic in Victoria Park on Victoria Day
* Horseback riding in White Mud Valley
* Late evening skating on the oval or at White Mud
* Playing ball in our front yard and batting the ball through the picture window

Camping with our daughter, Jenny and her family
Blueberry picking near Lac la Biche
Bible Camp at Pigeon Lake
* Campfire
* Rugged cabins and outdoor facilities
* Swimming, walking by the water, boating
* Being outside much of the day

* Camping before there were campgrounds
* Hiking to Horseshoe Falls
* Wading across mountain streams
* Mountain climbing

Dunvegan to Peace River on a Home-made Raft
* Labour Day Weekend with church youth group
* About 140 km from Dunvegan to town of Peace River
* Eating on board
* Camping in the hills beside the river
* Singing; bass fiddle made from inverted tub, hockey stick and cord, guitars

Camping at Okanagan Falls, B.C.
* Free camping but no amenities
* Bathing and shampooing with cold water
* Cheap holiday and good weather after six weeks of summer school at U of A

Camping Across Canada with Teaching Buddies
*All the way to Maritimes
* Pitching our tent in the pitch black
* Wind came up through night and water was rising
* Morning light shows we are on the very edge of the Bay of Fundy
* Niagara Falls--say no more

Camping with the Norwegian and the Kids
* Heinz Creek Crossing
* Slave Lake after the Flood in the 80s
* In the mountains

Visiting Alberta's National Parks
* Waterton, Jasper, Banff
Sunset Through the  Jackpines
* Nature's playgrounds

Camping with 7 Kids and without the Norwegian
* Discovered why Thunder Lake is so named.
* Didn't get to relax as I had planned

Farming with the Norwegian and the Kids
* Lots of outdoor activities
* Sunrises, Sunsets
* Gardening--vegetables, fruit, flowers, enough to supply friends and neighbours
* Shovelling snow
* Quad and skidoo rides
* Walking
* Bird Watching

Skiing in the Mountains
* Shutting down the mountain when I didn't get off at Easy Dismount
The five of us beside Maligne River

* Skiing with our kids whizzing past me

Family at Black Cat Ranch and Maligne Canyon
* Horseback riding in the foothills
* Hiking
* Walking

Vancouver, Victoria, Vancouver Island
* With and without the kids
* Butchart Gardens
* Ferry rides

Closer to Home
* Calaway Park
* Calgary Zoo

Grandkids Caleb and Logan make their own style
teepee of lodgepole pines
Passion Play in Drumheller
* Parades

Adventures with the Grandkids
* Blueberry picking north of Lac la Biche
Blueberry Picking--Yum!
* In the Sandhills by Barrhead
* Near Fort McMurray

Bus Tour of Maritimes with the Norwegian
*Sight seeing

At the Highland Village in Nova Scotia with the Norwegian

I have not exhausted this list, but it reminds me how much I enjoy being outside, how much I need to be outside, and how blessed we are to have freedom of moving about. In every one of the activities above, I could include appreciating the beauty of God's creation in the land, sea, sky, wildlife, and people. Most of all nature encourages me to  commune with the Creator of this planet and of Canada, the place where we are blessed to live.

* Research is showing that our moms were right when they encouraged us to go out and play
* Being outside can improve our health in every way: physically, emotionally, spiritually, and

With a friend I met while walking Fisherman's Wharf in Victoria

No matter where you live in Canada, nature is waiting for you. I am writing this to remind myself that I can improve my focus, my memory,  my heart rate, my productivity, my mental health . . . by getting outside where I can enjoy what Canada and the Good Lord have to offer us.

God is present in our outdoor ventures. He can restore our souls, if we let him.


  1. I enjoyed the list and the pictures, Sharon. I've been to some of these places myself. (I bet lots of people don't even know where Dunvegan is but I do!) As a child ur family went to Waterton every summer. Good times. We live in such a vast and scenic country. This month I am enjoying hearing about how people are enjoying it.

  2. Thanks, Tracy. I'm glad you enjoyed my list of things to do in Canada's great outdoors and that you could connect with some of my favourite places. Yes, I realize that Dunvegan isn't a household name, but it is a beautiful spot to visit. :-)

  3. I can identify with many of the outdoor activities and places you've listed, Sharon. I love being outside in nature, too. I find it blesses my heart and soul, not to mention my physical well being. We're so truly lucky to live in such a glorious land where we're free to roam to our heart's content.


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