Friends of Kootenay Blog

Access stories and photos about the natural and human history of Kootenay National Park and Columbia Valley Includes highlights about the Friends of Kootenay National Park activities and programs.



Wings Over the Rockies 2015


The theme for the 19th annual Wings Over the Rockies Festival is "Fossils and Feathers", inspired by the recent exceptional find of a fossil bed of significant importance in the Kootenay National Park.This year includes a full week of more than 90 field trips, presentation and workshops. Details at  Read more »

What's Up - Easter Daisy

Easter Daisy (Townsendia hookeri) in bloom April 2, 2015
by Larry Halverson 

EASTER-DAISY is just on time this year. In fact it is the earliest bloom date we have recorded for the Columbia Valley.The daisy like flower looks like it has no stem as it grows very low to the ground, seldom more than 4 cm high. Read more »

Another new Burgess Shale species has been identified in Kootenay National Park

Yawunki kootenayi, artistic reconstruction model by Lars Field (Phlesh Bubble)

508 million-year-old predatory 'lobster' has been discovered in Canada that held a "key position" in the food network at the time. Yawunik kootenayi had two pairs of eyes and prominent grasping appendages resembling those seen on modern beetles or shrimps. Read more »

A Fresh Look

This spring Lake Louise gets a fresh coat of turquoise paint, first since 1915.

What's in a Name - Mitchell Range

Mitchell Range after sunset. Photo by Larry Halverson

The Mitchell Range in the Kootenay Valley forms the eastern boundary of Kootenay National Park. It is made up of 8 mountains and stretches from the Simpson River to the Cross River. Read more »

Eagle Eye

Bald Eagles have begun nesting in the Columbia Valley Photo by Larry Halverson

From Wikipedia
“The eagle eye is among the strongest in the animal kingdom, with an eyesight estimated at 4 to 8 times stronger than that of the average human. Read more »

Wolf Tracks

Wolves spend 8 -10 hours/day on the move and can travel great distances.
Photo by Larry Halverson

Wolf tracks, like those of all canids, show four toes on each foot with claw marks present. The tracks of a wolf and large a dog are indistinguishable, even to a trained wolf biologist. Read more »

Great To See

A pack of 5 wolves in the Kootenay Valley - Photo by Larry Halverson

At one time Grey Wolves ranged over the entire northern hemisphere, but over the years they were essentially eradicated from the landscape, even in the National Parks. By the late 1940s there were no wolves in Kootenay National Park, however they later recolonized the mountain Parks and are now once again part of the natural biota. Read more »

Deer from the Rear

The upper side of the White-tailed Deer’s tail is usually the same colour as their body or
in some individuals like this one a darker brown.
- Photo by Larry Halverson

It is not obvious how White-tailed Deer got it’s name until you see them flee. As they run, their tails flip up and flares out, revealing an obvious white flag. It is thought they do this “fagging” to help young fawns follow their moms, startle predators or warn other deer. Read more »

Common Raven


Common Raven looking rather cold with it's down all puffed up. - by Larry Halverson

The Common Raven is one of the most common birds seen when driving through Kootenay National Park. Read more »

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