Saturday, June 16, 2012

Kentucky/Allyene Provincial Park – Part 1

There was a time when Kentucky/Allyene Provincial Park, located in the hills to the east of Merritt, was one of our favorite spots to visit….

Allyene Lake

There are actually two separate campgrounds in this park.  Above, is Allyene Lake and the campground situated it’s southern end.  This campground is accessible year round as a road runs right through the middle of it.  There was a time when you could also camp down at the far end of the lake.  There were only 4 or 5 sites there, not many people knew about them and you often had the place almost to yourself with only the coyotes, open range cattle and the occasional bear for company.  That was before someone, in their infinite wisdom, decided that the far end would be a reservation only group site….and that put an end to that!  You can still walk the road to the far end, but it only serves to remind you what has been lost.

Allyene Lake

here is another view of Allyene lake, from the shoreline. 

3 loons

On the above day, there were 3 Common Loons out on the lake – this is the lake where I saw my first Loon nest  and my first baby loon.  Also on that day were some male Barrow’s Goldeneye (I think the female were nesting) and a couple of Killdeer.

Kentucky Lake in the distance

This is the area that lies between the campground on Allyene Lake (behind us now) and before Kentucky Lake – in the distance.  There are a couple of ‘pot hole’ lakes here that are limited for fishing to those under 16 years of age.  There were more Barrow’s Goldeneye on these lakes and also a couple of pairs of Canada Geese.

the greeting party again

and here is the welcoming committee as you near the campsite located on Kentucky Lake.  They are, of course, those Columbian Ground Squirrels.


The greeting party

Here is a closer look at a couple of them.

The campsite from the boat launch

The most striking feature about Kentucky Lake is it’s colour!  This picture is taken from the boat launch…our camper is the first unit you see from the left hand side of the page…


and there we are, camped.  For some reason, a lot of the bushes that divide the campsites have been removed…not sure why but when privacy is valued….not too impressed…being the off season, the campground was quiet so not an issue this trip.

Female Rufous Hummingbird

The bushes that were there played host to Yellow-rump Warblers, Yellow Warblers and lots and lots of Rufous Hummingbirds!  Above a female…

Male Rufous Hummingbird

and here a male…and I think we’d better leave the rest of the bird and flower pictures for the next part.

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