Aki is frustrated. She and I have spent the last hour driving from one trailhead parking lot to another, looking for one that is not jammed with cars. She can’t understand why we have to avoid crowded trails. The Fish Creek parking lot has a half-a-dozen cars but it services three trails. We take the one least traveled. That will make all the difference. We will only have to pass three guys, and that at place to will allow us to keep three meters of distance.
Our chosen trail takes us up the creek, past an amazing number of huge spruce trees. Many might have sucked water from the creek during the English Civil War. Most stood before white people arrived in North America.
Few fish swim in the creek. It’s too early for adult salmon. Until they arrive, there will be no trout or dolly vardens. By now, most of the salmon smolt have made it to salt water. If we see a flash of silver in the stream, it will be a spawning steelhead trout.
We can hear bird song when the trail takes us away from the noisy creek. Two male sap suckers pound spruce bark, trying to attract a mate. Nearby, a trio of pine siskens lands on a wind fallen spruce to tear thin strips from the bark for nests.