Canada and Water: Destroying our Cultural Foundations

The disconnect between government policies and public opinion is hardly newsworthy, but it seems the divide has reached Grand Canyon proportions around Canadian environmental issues, particularly water. I (finally) got around to reading my latest issue of Canadian Geographic, which had a brief interview with Ed Burtynsky. He’s a Canadian photographer who this fall debuted…

Virtual Chinook

Chinook (from geography-dictionary.org; edited for metric units & accuracy): The warm dry wind which descends downslope on the lee side of a mountain range. It is warm from the compressional heating of the air as it sinks, and it is dry because the air retains the low moisture properties of the higher altitude source region. The…

Mountain Streams: Observing Differences

People who spend a lot of time around streams and rivers – fishing, kayaking, canoeing, or just being – know how to ‘read’ these watercourses, whether it’s to find the best fishing holes or to pick the best line to run a set of rapids. Even just to find the perfect spot where the rush…

Unravelling the thread of an idea

As interesting as an idea can be in and of itself, what’s also curiously exciting is the path taken by the mind from the initial zygote of that idea through its development phases and finally to its fruition. I’m reading Allan Casey‘s ‘Lakeland‘, an exploration of and homage to some of the great lakes (no, not…

Landscape in Life and Science

The course in the university calendar was titled Geography 415: Landscapes of the Heart. We snickered, incredulous that such a thing could be credited for a university degree. As undergrads – particularly ones who hadn’t learned a thing about geography until university – we didn’t fully understand the legacy of a geography education. As BSc…