Tag Archives: nature

One Step at a Time

Stawamus Chief
Stairway to Heaven

No. Not the one by Led Zeppelin but this stairway does take you part of the way to the summit of Stawamus Chief. While the stairs are only a small part of the hike, there is still a prolific number of treads to negotiate.

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Gaggle

Geese photo
Gaggle of Geese

Here we have a gaggle of geese! Unless they are in flight, then they are a skein. At the other end a flock of ducks are keeping their distance and guarding the open area of water. The near end of the pond appeared to be frozen with a couple of inches of melt water on top, so it may have been shallow enough to freeze in the colder weather the last few days. Why there should be a special word to describe a bunch of geese hanging out together probably remains a mystery. Likely the result of a bored English professor following his ‘publish or perish’ calendar in hopes of gaining tenure and a ten hour workweek. Start with aardvarks all the way to zebras, conjure up a nifty word to describe animals gathering together – is there a minimum number? – and presto, another publishable book to gather dust on the shelf presuming a copy is sold. It’s difficult to understand the rationale behind most of these:

  • a sleuth of bears
  • a crash of hippos
  • a zeal of zebras

but some do make some sense. A troop of baboons or a parade of elephants especially when either are on the move seem aptly descriptive.

Oh, by the way, a group of aardvarks can be referred to as an aarmory – tricky adding on that extra a 🙂