Retirement: World's longest coffee break. travel blog

Frances starts up the trail with a skiff of new snow.

A lynx had been there before us

The man with the beaver

All that was left of the last beaver

Frances prepares the tree

Dale prepares the beaver

Attaching the beaver to the tree

Almost done

Barb heads in the to the first site on day 2

At the second site, Barb and Dale haul up the beaver

Barb does the hammering

 

Up close and personal with the skinned beaver

The site is ready

Heading back down the trail


The Wolverine project had some volunteers cancel at the last minute so they called us and we were happy to help out. Our first trip last Wednesday was with project helper Frances and was a short ski up the Redearth Creek fire road then off into the bush. We followed fresh lynx tracks up the road and then arrived at the site to find a beaver skeleton and lots of disturbed snow. Unfortunately, the camera hadn't been working and the tracks were old so we couldn't tell what had been there. There was lots of hair left behind so hopefully it was a wolverine. We set up the new beaver and were out of there in record time.

Two days later we went out with Barb to a couple of close in sites. The first was near Castle Junction and we headed in on snow shoes to find another beaver skeleton but no hair at all. Looking at the memory card from the camera, we found that a wolverine had walked by, looked up at the tree with the whole beaver still intact but then carried on. Guess he wasn't hungry! A couple of pine martens enjoyed the beaver feast a few days later. We set up a new beaver and then headed back to the car. We drove a short distance along the Bow Valley Parkway, had some lunch and then started up a well packed trail on foot. After a short walk we put on our snow shoes and headed into the bush to the site. This site was really disturbed with lots of large, frozen footprints that were not recognizable. The beaver's skeleton was on the ground but intact which suggested that the visitor hadn't been a wolverine, they eat everything, bones included. There was lots of hair on the wire on the tree but it was fluffy white hair. Looking at the camera card, we saw that a cougar had come along and spent 2 days feasting on beaver before leaving behind the sad skeleton on the ground. After that a wolf came by to check it out. The goal is to capture data on wolverines but it was pretty exciting to see the photos of the cougar and wolf!

We really enjoy these outings, always learn something new and enjoy a day out in the mountains!



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