You ever get those moments where you seem to step out of yourself and have almost third-person thoughts? Like when you are on a vacation, or something amazing happens to you like a job promotion or you finally meet a chap that is genuinely great....and you begin thinking....this is an amazing moment...but by the time that thought has gone through your head....it's already passed? I had many such moments on my trip to the NWT. For one, I've been wanting to visit northern Canada for as long as I can remember. Once there and getting to witness first hand things like midnight sun, the landscape, seeing wood bison in their natural habitat....I tried to take in as much as I could and not to hurry onto the next thing. One thing that really got me was the sense that I was a lot closer to the sky. It sounds odd, especially being from the prairie provinces and spending time in southern AB where it is pretty flat in some places and all there seems to BE is sky. Maybe it was knowing how far north I was actually going and maybe it was due to the short scrubby nature of the trees...but in the NWT I really get the sense that people are a lot closer to the sky. Physically.
The photo for this was taken just outside of Fort Smith, NWT while we were hiking on the salt plains. This doesn't really show the plains as they are literally flat expanses dotted with strange and very small red vegetation, no grass and the ground is white with salt and very dry. It preserves animal tracks very well and just between the embankment you walk down and the actual flats themselves...there are mounds of salt. I kid you not. It looks like piles of snow, but it is indeed salt. It's also some of the best salt you can get. At the top of the embankment before you descend a short trail to the flats, there is an lookout point with some brief history of the area....and a great view of the plains. There are also view finders....and by using those view finders we saw a very large herd of wood bison off in the distance. So very cool to see them out there, where they should be. On the flats themselves were bison tracks, along with large wolf, bear, deer and sandhill crane. It was an amazing place and we spent a fair amount of time just walking around and taking pictures. The Little Buffalo river runs through the flats and it is very salty too. I tried to indicate how huge the sky feels when you are standing on the flats. I think the narrowness of the canvas helps with that.
I feel like all that space got inside me somehow...and the city is feeling a little cramped because of it.