Memoirs Pierre A J Sabourin Where Snow Flakes Fall Thickest

Where Snow Flakes Fall Thickest

Where Snow Flakes Fall Thickest

This past February, friends joined one day to hike while I was painting a series on the Chikanishing Creek in Killarney Provincial Park. Our party was accompanied by a fourth member an apricot poodle named Dagwood. Upon the return of the hikers to my painting site Dagwood immediately got between my feet. Hey Dagwood Moovez- Vous. All of a sudden a very large and quite healthy Eastern timber wolf comes down off the creek bluff and tries to grab Dagwood. Dagwood the brave little bugger charges the wolf, all of us screaming both animals stop dead in their tracks.

As panic sets we get Dagwood back and with continuous yelling and throwing sticks we managed to scare the wolf off. Or so we thought, to our amazement he reappears 45 seconds later from a new direction. We yelled and threw sticks; again he vanishes into the bush, and within seconds comes in from a third direction to within feet of us. Pierre do you think you could finish up this painting while we fend off this wolf. It occurred to me an atmosphere of terror hardly encourages reflection. The prospect of more wolf pals arriving and Dagwood becoming le snack de jour was to compelling an argument. After quick deliberation and a tear down that could rival Guinness, Dagwood in hand we bid a hasty but…. orderly retreat.

That evening the big snow storm of the year hit Killarney, the following morning was absolutely glorious and angelic. There is no way I’m missing this opportunity to paint Chikanishing Creek. I had been there all week long painting by myself, nothing remotely close to a wolf encounter had occurred. Dagwood was the bait, of course no one was willing to accompany still shaken from the previous day’s encounter. So I trudged her alone determined to capture the day. When I got down to my trail head low and behold there they were fresh wolf tracks. Dam I thought as panic set in, he’s hiding in the low canopies, don’t chicken out now Pierre, you got this far, go for it Pierre go for it. Hunting knife in hand I decided to blaze a new trail through the deep snow keeping a keen eye out for Mr. Loupis.

I reach this unbelievable site beside a running beaver dam and set up on the bank in front of it to paint. I can’t hear anything because of the running water. Since I’m already spooked, as a security measure I plant my hunting knife in the snow for quick access when fending off large predators. As an extra precautionary measure every ten minutes or so while painting, I would look over my left shoulder then… I would look over my right shoulder…. believing in my numb skull brain I would get the drop on the varmint as he was sneaking up.

I can honestly say there are no casual connections on the surface level of reality as a huge pile of snow falls out of the tree above, hitting the back of my legs as it landed. Well, son of a biscuit box, don’t you know that wolf had got me? I let out with a powerful scream while launching an Air Jordon Spin- A- Rama another strategic manoeuver for fending off large predators. Landing on my back on top of my wet palette in the snow, believing I’m on the menu, searching for my stupid knife. I come to the realization it’s just me and Mother Nature.

A brilliant performance, a thing of beauty it was. Mr.Loupis howling from the ridge actually gave me a ten. Thank God nobody had seen this foolishness in action as I quickly regained my complexion and carried on with spirited determination. After two strenuous hikes to get my equipment toboggan and wet painting out, exhausted I slide into the driver’s seat of my vehicle oblivious of my new wet palette coat I was now sporting. Where Snow Flakes Fall Thickest.

About Pierre AJ Sabourin

*studied fine art at the University of Ottawa and the University of Calgary Following the Footsteps of The Group of Seven in Killarney, Provincial Park
This entry was posted in Artwork, En Plein Air, Following Footsteps, Killarney Provincial Park, Memoirs and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Memoirs Pierre A J Sabourin Where Snow Flakes Fall Thickest

  1. Rev. Canon Gaye Whippey says:

    I have never seen Killarney in the Winter but your work captures beauty and mystery. Your lively and animated description of your adventure with wolf and Mother Nature’s surprise were also a work of art. Thank you! We didn’t hike this Summer as I was officiating at the marriage of our youngest but we hope to be back this August. Will you still be doing your week in the Park?

  2. aboutrui says:

    Excellent story Pierre and quite funny!

  3. Normand Sauve says:

    Ah Mon ami, this certainly has the makings of a sequel painting wherein PAJS freshly smitten or bitten as the case may be , emerges from the snowy banks , brush in hand, as…the Loup-Garou of Chikanishing !!!!! Beware all visitors , on the eve of the full moon ….

    Date: Wed, 15 Jan 2014 03:06:04 +0000 To: normsauve@hotmail.com

  4. Cathy Gauthier says:

    A very entertaining tail…tale….
    Winter is always a thing of beauty, nothing compares to it, although autumn comes in a close second. I carry a solid oak hiking club/stick to crack skulls with. Thankfully I’ve never had to use it, never had to find out if it works. Stories that get the heart pumping, stories that let you know you’ve got a wonderful life Pierre!

  5. So pleased to finally hear the whole story. I will tape a copy of it on the back of my print “Where Snow Flakes Fall Thickest”. No one could tell this better than you Pierre. I knew there was a reason for the coat of many colours..

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