The temperatures reach their highest values in July and early August. These are the dog days of summer. Foxes can be seen during the early morning hours scavenging in the park for whatever they can find. The ducks and geese, which stayed and did not make the trek further north, are now busy raising their families. This is also a prime time for viewing ospreys. They are busy feeding their young with fish they pull from the cool waters of the Nechako River. Its waters have receded now and there are just some slow moving pools of water left in front of the Canoe Launch parking lot, ideal for the two-legged users of the park to have a refreshing dip in the cooling waters. This is the peak season for the park, where people come and seek refuge in the shade between the trees. Everything is dry. And it is also the peak of fire season.
There had been a Mountain Pine Beetle epidemic over the last twenty years in the forests in the Central Interior and the Cariboo Regions of British Columbia. It devastated large tracts of land. Most of the beetle kill was harvested, but for some of the timber it was too late to be of any commercial value. Thunderstorms and lightning strikes set the forest ablaze and, depending on the wind direction, smoke from these fires is blown to the park, filling the air with its foul stench. As firefighting efforts progress this is brought under control eventually and people and animals can breathe easy again.
By mid August the major summer heat wave is over and things are back to normal again. The ducklings and goslings, which survived the dog days of summer have molted and now look more like their parents. And the foxes have started to grow their winter pelt. For now it is still short but as the season progresses it will continue to grow. The first leaves are turning yellow and as August turns into September the fruits of all the flowering shrubs have ripened. As the early morning daylight recedes morning fog is a distinct possibility. It usually burns off quickly once the sun comes out. This is the time when bears can be once again spotted in the park. They are feeding on the berries, which are now abundant in the park. Hibernation is just around the corner and they have to build up their fat reserves if they are to survive the winter. The foliage on the trees and bushes has now turned to colourand has started dropping to the ground. Fall has officially arrived.
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