Go Nordic!

[FEB2021] I’ve been reading the book “NØRTH: How to live Scandinavian”. It’s a light-hearted, though accurate, look at how things are different in that cluster of countries across the Atlantic that share similar latitudes to us here in Canada. And often different for the better it seems, seeing as they usually seem to top rankings…

Snowshoe Season

[JAN2021] It’s an annual tradition… my “highly subjective declaration of official snowshoe season”… and thanks to a good dump of snow Friday into Saturday it’s now at that point when snowshoes are more-or-less required to get around the property easily. Though the depth varies a lot. In the open it’s 12-18″ in places where there…

What a difference a day makes!

[DEC2020] We had our first “official” (as defined by Environment Canada) Winter Storm last week. Not that a big dump of snow is anything out of the ordinary up here… we’re in the snow belt of both Lake Huron and Georgian Bay, depending which direction the wind is moving. So I thought I would try…

We’re In Deep

[FEB2020] Though the snow came early (see NOV2019 blog post) it’s turned out to be a pretty gentle winter this year–in terms of both temperature and snowfall. That is, until Feb 27+28 when we were visited by what the weather forecasters refer to as a “Texas Low”. I guess only big things come out of…

Winter Arrives

[NOV2019] I have two “cover” photos I use for our cabin rental listing at airbnb.ca/h/off-grid-retreat which I alternate depending on time of year. I switch to the winter photo when that is more likely what guests will experience when they book. And I usually end up switching to the summer version when I finally get…

Canadian Sunbathing

[MAR2019] Astronomical spring (the vernal equinox) arrived March 20th this year. Meteorological spring arrives March 1st every year—which, living here, sounds rather astonishing but who am I to argue with Environment Canada. The pictures on this page were taken earlier this month. You see, I get to a point each year when I am

Snowshoe Season

[JAN2019] I am declaring it officially the start of snowshoe season here. It’s a somewhat subjective decision… based generally on snow getting to more-or-less the depth of my knee in open areas, but also on (a) how clumsily I move around with just boots on my feet and (b) observing that Oscar, a medium-to-large size…

Moon Magic

[JAN2019] I am writing this Off Grid blog post as I kill some time, waiting for the lunar eclipse coming later this evening. A full moon in winter is always magical here… the combination of a bright moon, dry crisp air, and snow on the ground, means distinct moon shadows and the eerie sensation of…

Winter Preview

[NOV2018] Winter is never a no-show up here. In fact, it was escaping the GTA in search of “real” winter and white snow one weekend ten years ago that led me by chance to find this country place I now call home! It’s just a question of how early it arrives and how long it…

Snow It Goes

[FEB2018] Last weekend, there was still a thin layer of snow in the forest but any open areas here or anywhere else around were bare. A strange sight for January ’round these parts. It took Mother Nature all of a few days to get it looking like “normal” again, with large dumps of fluffy snow…

Tradition

[DEC2017] Guests sometimes ask me how I came to find this place, and how I came to make the choice to switch out of a conventional house and suburb life in favour of off-grid country living. The two questions have related though separate answers, the response to the second a more involved story I relate…

Atypical Winter!

[FEB2017] So, just a week after writing about “classic” winter, we get a bizarre dip into spring with temps more characteristic of late March or early April. My Airbnb guests this weekend (return guests, truly the nicest compliment for a host!) could not have had a more stellar holiday longer weekend!! Still lots of snow…

Classic Winter

[FEB2017] It’s been a near-perfect “classic” winter here in  Grey-Bruce so far this year. There has been lots of snow… snowshoes have been necessary gear to navigate the trails since early January… but not so much as to be overwhelming.

Snow Dog

[DEC2016] My daughter, who is studying Community Design and Environment, Sustainability & Society, at Dalhousie U, was back in Ontario for the holidays. She stayed with me here during the days leading up to Christmas and left this fine (and well-behaved)  canine specimen for my next Airbnb guest, who arrived today… to find the snow…