Sunday, October 23, 2011

this magnificent place...

oh this magnificent place, this amazing landscape I am blessed to call home...
a day long cultural journey along the Howe Sound fjord from Vancouver to Whistler which is rich in Squamish Nation Indigenous legend, and Spirit of this lands original people... the Sḵwxwú7mesh Nation (Skwxwu7mesh) people lived, hunted, fished, and celebrated their traditions for hundreds of years on this vast coastal territory.

Shannon Falls thunders down the rock face, casting an ethereal mist over the changing landscape.. you can almost hear the whispers of the peoples who stood and celebrated this lands richness..

a 600lb solid cedar canoe, hewn from one original three ton cedar log serves as a reminder of the ocean freeways that were travelled up and down this coastline... paddles dipped again and again into the life providing waters, as they travelled from permanent villages to seasonal hunting and gathering places..

mountain goat wool gathered from the trunks of trees during molting season, provided clothing, gifts and much needed protection during the long winter months.. the mountain goats were never killed for their wool, as it would be gathered yearly during the molt as they rubbed themselves against tree trunks to remove their yearly coats...

the colours of tapestry were all gleaned from a local diet, ashes from fire to create black, berries to colour in reds and purples... nothing was wasted, nothing discarded as all given from the earth was valued as a gift from the creator and was held in sacred guise..

cedar bark and roots, carefully handcrafted into jewelery, baskets, clothing, masks...
cedar bark stripped from the trunks of local trees, never more than 2 hands in width so as to not harm this precious relation who provided materials for life... long strips freely granted, and then processed into workable material..

this landscape is vast, rugged and intensely beautiful... as the trees begin their shift from green to yellow and gold, a brisk winds whispers of colder nights to come, a hint of fall's transformation into winter... the legends and stories of their ancestors will soon fill gatherings with smiles and laughter... stories of trickster ravens and killer whales, eagles and sea serpents...

these are an immensely proud people, rich in history and narrative... open to sharing their heritage and hearts... a day to listen, a day to open our minds and souls to these amazing people who understand  how precious the earth is and how intricately we are all connected to each other...

"All my relations", we are all family...

``Huy chexw``  
- Thank you in Squamish language... 


  1. Those were mind blowing images. Here for the first time, and I feel totally enamoured. :O
    Loved the first and last picture. Kinda felt reminded of a wonderful Windows wallpaper!

  2. Crystal, Thank you for stopping by and welcome!! I am glad you enjoyed the pictures. I had a wonderful time taking them..

  3. Hey Ry...guess wht?? I opened ur blog to some of my bloggy friends thru the link I shared with them?? its great sharing beautiful work!!:) btw..I loved the way u shared with us the history along with some breath taking pictures u captured..I love the woven bright red material and the goat and the mask!!:) and ofcourse I agree with Crysty as well:)

  4. Stunning,stunning pictures and a narrative that took me to a different glad that I stopped by...refreshing!!!!Sharon

  5. That waterfall is amazing. I can practically hear it from here! Thanks for joining the Weekend Rewind x