Canadian winters are lovely, harsh, tormenting, delightful and always un-predictable and exciting! Every year there is something new to experience and every part of the country gets to experience different winter sensations.
I’ve been lucky to have lived all over Canada and have passed winters in The Northwest Territories, Alberta, British-Columbia, Manitoba and Quebec. Every province has a different winter…sure almost always there is snow, except on the Sunshine Coast of BC where I lived and saw only rain, but you don’t have to shovel it, they would often say!
Now that we’re living in New Brunswick we’re seeing new aspects…things like the Nor’easter storms. This is our first winter in New Brunswick and it’s barely started and already we’ve seen storm surges smashing the coast, snow storms knocking trees down and cutting power, and winds blowing at 100 km/h!
The weather has been atrocious! So today, after several days of grey cloudy weather with snow squalls and high wind chills we finally had some sun and it was time to take advantage of the lovely day.
We decided to brew up some kava and take a walk on the famous Dobson Trail to go deep into the woods and have a little kava ceremony. We decided to avoid the first section of the trail because it is always the busiest and decided instead to drive to the second trail head. With all the snow we had in the last few days the trail seemed pretty much unused except for snowshoers. We had our boots and trekked along to the beaver dam under thick branches heavy with snow. It was so beautiful to see the white tufts of fluffy snow clinging to the branches and the bright blue sky above us. The heavy snow caused the birch branches to droop around us and it was like walking under a canopy of magical crystal pillows held up by the sleeping trees.
Once we got to the fork in the trail at the beaver dam we turned right and had to break trail ourselves as everyone else had turned back from that point as it was a bit rough for snow shoes. We skirted the beaver pond and headed to where we knew there was a little rest stop and it was there we have a break and a little kava.
There were many trees that had been toppled over, blown down in the strong storm winds we had in Atlantic Canada the last few weeks. We had to crawl under some big trees that had collapsed on the trail and go around others. Luckily the trail is well marked, even in the snow and being the first in the snow, we were able to find our way with only a couple of spots that we drifted off the trail.
Finally we got to the rest stop and were surprised to see three chairs waiting for us! How thoughtful! This little clearing is a popular spot for some folks as there is always a collection of empty beer cans tossed around the clearing, luckily because of the 30cm of snow that had fallen in the last few days we didn’t have to see garbage and could enjoy a few minutes in the woods with a few sips of kava.
We had walked for about an hour and had sat for 15 minutes enjoying the rest and the kava. The sun was going down and we knew we couldn’t enjoy the silence too long so we packed up and headed back.
After the one hour walk through deep snow in the cold we were pretty tired and our bodies started to feel weak. We had two Kashi bars to share on the return trip and they helped but we were both a bit dizzy and weak in the knees…we had ramen knees or lasagna legs for sure!!
When we saw our car at the trail head we were as happy as if we had seen a big birthday cake being set on the table in front of us! It was so nice to sit down! We’ve loved hiking the Dobson Trail in the 6 months we’ve lived in New Brunswick and this was one of the more strenuous stretches we did…it really knocked us out…next time we’ll bring a bigger snack and will be careful when we stand beside a tree filled with snow covered branches as DD had a whole bunch of snow fall down her neck as she touched a snowy tree!
When we got home we were wet, tired and glad to have a roaring fire in the wood stove! The Dobson Trail is incredible, every time we use it we are thankful to live in a place as beautiful as New Brunswick!