Winter and snow transform landscapes. This season, Winter of 2015/2016, mild weather did not afford too many of those magic, snow covered, moments. Fortunately, a recent snowstorm offered an opportunity to go back and get lost in the stretch of Etobicoke Creek, using the old Middle Road Bridge, once again, as the access point into the world of snow covered peace.
Upstream from the bridge, the creek widens to form a small river island, a refuge from nearby suburban and industrial development. In Fall or Summer, getting onto the island is a bit more difficult. Regular flow and undergrowth prevent easy passage and alter a lot of sight-lines. The Winter has a unique and special look. Once again, I am reminded how time and change of seasons influences the landscape. It becomes almost impossible to resist the urge to explore and get on the island, gain a different perspective on the world.
Having wandered up this way few summers ago, the view is definitely different. Snow is covering the ground, colluding with leafless trees and sun to form a monochrome world and offer a different perspective on landscape.Looking at the bridge itself, a view not possible other than in Winter. The area around the Middle Road Crossing, once a vibrant connection, is a peaceful place at all times. Yet, there is something different, more peaceful and calm in Winter. Snow covers, muffles and filters out the ugliness of any kind.
Then, I can focus, focus on enjoying the sun and snow show, gentle but distinct shadows on the smooth white surface create a landscape all its own. With photography, we can capture this moment, landscape of shadows that will soon turn into marshy spring awakening. A day or two and it will all disappear, rocks and boulders accentuating the stream, clay wall of the creek will go, once again, into the shadows of leaves and tall grass, and the Sun will shine from higher above, making us wait for the shadows to come back another Winter, another snowy day.
Etobicoke Creek ravine is a place of endless exploration. More I keep returning, more I am motivated to explore, waiting for the next opportunity to go further, explore more and sit there in awe of that intimate landscape that is at hand, but wondrously remains unknown to many. Motivation arrives from strangest of days, most surprising places. Comforting to know, that so much to have is at our fingertips.