Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A Magical Moment

I’ve been enjoying the changing parade of photos that are displayed on my computer’s desktop. Many bring back fond memories. This photo, in particular, brought back one very memorable magic moment.

Jim and I, along with several of our hiking buddies, had spent the day hiking along the high ridge of the Saguenay Fjord in Quebec. Sated after a delicious dinner at the hut where we were spending the night, the group of us had gone down to the water’s edge to admire the spectacular sunset. The night was still, the water calm. A perfect evening for absorbing the land’s tranquility.  

But a sudden gasp told us we were not alone. The water rippled. A white nose poked above the surface, sent out a puff of spray and sank back into the water.  Another joined it and then another. Soon there were several places where the flat, red-reflected water was breaking into rippling concentric circles.  

There was only one mammal they could be; the Saguenay Fjord’s famous beluga whale. For the next long while the group of us sat transfixed as several pods of the small white whales fed in the water in front of us. We daren’t utter a word in case we disturbed them. As the red sun sank behind the distant shore, they fed. The only sound was the expulsion of their breath as they broke the surface to breath.

Only when the coolness of the night arrived did we move, while the belugas continued to feed.

It was a treasured moment, one that will always be with us.

I’ve added a few more photos from that spectacular 4 day hike along the north ridge of the Saguenay Fjord.