Wednesday, 24 August 2016


Off of Highway 41 south and east of Medicine Hat, Alberta. There are supposed to be thirty-five burials here. There are not that many markers when I got here. The sun was starting to go down when I found this on August 19, 2016. 

A marker was put up years ago. "St. Peter's Ev. Lutheran 1st Settlers 1888. Josephburg P.O. Assiniboia West N.W.T."  Alberta was not a province until 1905. Latvian makes it interesting. Groups came to Canada from all over to settle in the middle of nowhere. Canada is still a lot of empty space. There is a Finnish cemetery near Manyberries which is south and west of this place. It is on my list of places to visit.

The back reads: "St. Peter's German Latvian Lutheran Church 1897 - 1945 35 burials. Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord  from henceforth. Rev 14:13"

There are a few headstones still standing.

Very plain. No name that I could see.

Quiet lonely place. Nothing nearby. Twilight on the prairie.

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

I guess this is some sort of milestone

Today I have officially got over one hundred thousand page views and to date I posted over one thousand entries. This is nowhere in the league of other bloggers however I am surprised anyone reads this in the first place.

Since it has taken me this long to get this many views starting tomorrow I have decided to take this blog in a totally different direction featuring scantily clad women in revealing exotic attire. I am leaning towards leather. This should increase my audience.

Or tomorrow might feature a post about an abandoned cemetery since I already have it scheduled.

Waste not, want not.

Old Wives

Old Wives is an actual place in Saskatchewan. I drove through August 20, 2016. There is no official sign pointing it out. Apparently Old Wives is named after a legend that a Cree camp was attacked by the Blackfoot and the older women could not escape and drowned in the lake trying to get away. Officially Old Wives has a population of zero. 

I am guessing that from Highway 363 that Old Wives is or was at the top of the hill on the gravel road. I drove up and there are a couple of farms at the top with some old buildings on the property. I declined to take any photos at they were surrounded by junk and falling apart.

This is from the top of the hill looking south. At the horizon is Old Wives Lake.

This is just by the intersection. The ranch has a mobile home on the property so I just took a photo of the sign.

The only official sign marking what once was a place where people lived.

Monday, 22 August 2016

This probably made sense at one time

This is the road out of Fir Mountain, Saskatchewan where there are no mountains and the remains of a town. In the middle of the road is a hand pump. The pump has a piece taken out of it so it is no longer usable. It is an odd place for it. You can see this on Google Street View.

Spotted August 20, 2016.

St. Elizabeth Roman Catholic Church

West of Gravelbourg, Saskatchewan on July 31, 2016 north of Highway 43.

The church is no longer in use and is locked. A quick look inside shows everything is intact. I was unable to get a photo of the interior.

I have always thought a simple cross said more.

"St. Elizabeth Roman Catholic Church Cemetery 1911 erected by the Glen Bain Historical Society."

I like unique markers. The bottom repeats the top.

A quick fix that I hope someone comes by with a more permanent solution.

I saw these all over southern Saskatchewan.

Sunday, 21 August 2016

Playing with perspective

The underside of the abandoned East Coulee Bridge in East Coulee, Alberta August 13, 2016. This is an old railway bridge. I thought I would try something different. Trying to do the art thing also means putting up with hungry mosquitos so this was a short-lived experiment.

Overdue for a bale post

Near Ormiston, Saskatchewan August 20, 2016. I have been trying to get a really good photo of bales in a field and I think I finally succeeded this time. This part of Saskatchewan is not really flat, more like rolling hills.

Quick take July 30, 2016

I keep coming back to this one. I took this as a test at the side of the road just after I got my new cell phone when I was setting it up. I was never intending to post this but every time I run across it I like it more and more. This was on some fencing just off Highway 41 south of Elkwater, Alberta. 

Large abandoned house

Near Lawson, Saskatchewan on a gravel side road. I spotted it from the highway. It is a big house. It is on someone's farmland otherwise I would have walked up to get a better look. It was surprising to see something like this abandoned.

This is a fairly big house, two floors and possibly a finished attic at one time. I would love to know how old it is and how long it has been sitting like this.

Saturday, 20 August 2016

Rural humour

Spotted this in a very rural area southeast of Finnegan, Alberta August 13, 2016.

East and West Ranch

Spotted July 30, 2016 on Highway 41 in Alberta about fifteen miles from the Canada/USA border. I liked this becacause I though the sign was unique and the brands are featured on the sign. The photo could be better. The ranch owns a fair bit of land in the area. 

Friday, 19 August 2016

Near the Bullpound bridge

This belongs with my earlier post. This abandoned house was near the bridge. It is likely a ranch house since there is farming in the valley and there was a herd of cattle nearby. No roads into this spot so building the house might have been a bit of a challenge.

It just might be a nice weekend here so it just might be the time to take one last road trip before the end of August.

Return to the Bullpound Railway Bridge

The last time I was here I posted about it on a May 12, 2016 post. On my prior visit I did not get all the way to the bridge. For some unexplained reason I got a bit obsessed about making it to this bridge. To be honest I get a little obsessed with some quests and a lot of them do not make a lot of sense. This time I did get all the way to the bridge. Two friends came with me. The road, or trail to be more accurate, to get close to this place had some good sized mud puddles that we were not going to be able to drive through. Not with a 2003 Chev Impala. We were going to have to walk a little further than planned. We ended up walking at least eight miles round trip over hilly terrain, getting eaten alive by mosquitos, some minor sunburn, and getting a few blisters in the process. I think we are still friends.

I know there are snakes in the area. Alberta is home to rattlesnakes, bull snakes, and garter snakes and they are in this area. We did not see any of them. We did see deer, antelope, and a very large jackrabbit. There are also lots of small cactus. I know because I saw them and unintentionally stepped on lots of them. I got stabbed in the foot a couple of times.

You can see the outline of the abandoned rail line before and after the bridge. The bridge is well built. There are some remains of old railway water tanks in the area but I did not see them. There are no roads to this bridge. I would have got a few more photos except for the bugs. We ended up almost finishing a new container of bug spray to try to keep them away.

This is what the landscape in the Drumheller, Alberta area looks like.

This is what is left of the old rail line through here.

The bridge has a wood deck. I walked about five feet onto it and heard enough cracking underneath my feet to decide not to venture further. If I knew the decking was safe I would have walked to the other side just to say I did it. The bridge crosses the Red Deer River. 

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Hail to pay

Damage estimate from my insurance company for the recent hail damage to my 2012 Kia says there is just over $9,000.00 in damage. The dents are not really that noticeable so I found the amount a bit of a shock. The joys of living in southern Alberta.

Old one room schoolhouse west of Gravelbourg

West of Gravelbourg, Saskatchewan on Highway 43. Maltby School, School District 3777, operated 1917 to 1953. Now sitting abandoned in a farmer's field.

The sign could use a coat of paint.

Right behind the school is a steel grain bin.

I did not go inside. Nothing to really see. Some debris past the door.

View from the back.

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Dead at fifty-four

Lupus Anticoagulant Antiphospholipid Syndrome is what is listed on my father's autopsy report. Evidence of strokes were listed as well. He had three separate bypasses during his life. He lived a reasonably healthy life. The problem was he was not a healthy man during his life. He died in 1997 at fifty-four years of age. He was the youngest in his family. Of his two brothers and three sisters a brother and sister died at age fifty-four. The remaining brother made it to eighty. None of them are around now. I have had quite a few relatives on my father's side of the family exit at that age. I am over fifty myself. I am not too concerned, I live a relatively healthy lifestyle and the health professionals tell me I am fine. Knowing the longevity of my family I am also aware time can be short.

Some might get the impression that an underlying theme of this blog might be about finding myself. Possibly. If it is I am doing it on a subconscious level. I have never really been much of a believer in people needing to find themselves. I have a reasonable idea of who I am and what I am and what my limitations are. I see this space as something else. 

My father worked very hard and really did not do a lot for himself until his last few years. He was focused on his responsibilities. When he did have the time for himself I think he was unsure what to do with it. I did my best to work hard and get ahead. I worked full time and took university courses at the same time eventually getting a degree. There were times I would drive off after my job to to go class for three hours to come back to my car in freezing temperatures and get home very late at night. I sacrificed a lot of weekends and some holidays for assignments and studies. As an aside you find out over time that you are the only one that appreciates and understands the sacrifice.

You can work for years keeping busy, or kept busy, within the set boundaries of your existence and not being aware of much else. It may not be comfortable but it is familiar. So much so that when upheaval or change puts you on a different path it can affect you. My father wanted to go back to school after years of working and heavily thought about it. I think he lacked confidence or had some fear about attempting it. For a lot of us it is safer not to do things. He died before he could do it. When faced with something new it can be difficult to forge ahead. In the past I have been hesitant to get out and do things, even feeling that I cannot do certain things. It is interesting what can hold you back. For years I have been so comfortable living one way I was not sure if I was able to do something different. 

Doing this has kind of given me the confidence to do some things I wanted to do. Things like writing. I have wanted to write more. What always held me back was that I thought I would have nothing interesting to say. Instead of thinking about writing it is better to do some actual writing. As someone who takes photos for fun I consider myself a hack. Over time I do think I am getting better at it. Now I know it is more important to try rather than not try. It does not matter if the end result never sees the light of day. The important thing is that I do it in the first place. 

I will not be doing anything radical like jumping out of air planes anytime soon. I have not interest in it and I have a fear of heights. Getting out and exploring has made me feel better about tackling other things I have thought about. I have had trips where a number of things went wrong. A lot more things went right. You learn how to roll with situations and carry on. That is what I like to think what this is about. Experiencing a few things and gaining something from it.   

Abandoned bridge west of Scotsguard, Saskatchewan

This is right alongside Highway 13. It is an old highway bridge that crosses a railway and on the other side is a railway trestle. It is a unique design and I had to stop and look it over.

Nature has long since reclaimed the old road.

Looking off the east side of the bridge to the trestle below.

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Somewhere along Highway 13, Saskatchewan

Spotted on July 30, 2016. Someone has a collection of old vehicles. I had posted a couple of these on an online forum with the location. I was informed that the landowner is a very private individual so I am not going to say where these were taken. I have deleted some photos from this post to remove any references to the location. There are about thirty vehicles of this vintage and they are not visible from the highway and they are all in this condition. It was an interesting sight.

The wheels on this one have wooden spokes.