Great Bear Rain Forest

Great Bear Rain Forest – It’s about reflections. Physical, visual, spiritual, ethereal, introspective reflections. The powerful image of a landscape reflected on the surface of the fjord. The eruption of the humpback whales carrying the bounty of the sea from below to above before they squeeze out the tons of water then swallowing a sustenance of herring. The rarity of a mooksgm ‘ol or Kermode Spirit bear looking across the stream into our world and we into theirs – a spiritual reflection to calm the soul. Clouds from above mirrored onto the waters below. Fog rising into the trees and wrapping the landscape so that it reflects the misty moment. Blue skies, grey skies, green trees, and mountain sides coloring the water with a mood. Grizzly bears reaching from their world into the waters surrounding them to pull salmon for feasting. The Kermode and Black bear meeting as black and white reversals in the reflection of genetic mirrors of each other. A great Blue Heron and eagle flying side by side as to reflect each other on their own terms. The moonlight and the planet Venus bouncing their reflected light from our sun onto the twilight waters surrounding us. Starlight from millions of light years ago, twinkling on the present that surrounds us.

Reflections take on many meanings. It could be the mirrored light, echoes of sound, heat or cold absorbed from the ambient surrounding. It implies ideas or contemplation when stimulated by a thought or sight. It is not always a duplicate, but can be tempered, modified, even transmuted. Sometimes it is “a thing that is a consequence of, or arises from, something else”. Something that triggers a thought, an action, or changes how one thinks, as in “upon further reflection”.

Then there is the ethereal element – heavenly or spiritual connection, where we simply take in the surroundings and process them. The time just spent gazing across the horizon, listening, being present. Staring into the forest anticipating, trying to observe, but without knowing what to look for. Even seeing the dying salmon, and the dead carcasses on the shore or floating in the river reminds us of the connection between this world and the next.

Reflecting on time itself, the before, now and future. Acknowledging that it is the Gitk’a’ata a part of the Tsimshian people who were before us. Now, we were guest in their traditional grounds. Visitors sharing in their culture and stewardship. Trying to reflect on what it means to them how we can comprehend our connection to nature. It is the Gitk’a’ata who manage these lands for “the protection and celebration of their traditional culture” for the future generations. So we share and reflect on the spiritual nature of their community.

Reflections. Physical, visual, spiritual, ethereal, introspective reflections. This was a journey of light, of eye inspiring vistas, of connections to inner thoughts, experiencing “extremely delicate light in a way that seems too perfect for this world”. Allowing oneself to be overcome by the litany of thoughts that comes from being immersed in nature – seeing, feeling, being quiet and absorbed in thought. Reflecting.

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