There is a story behind this picture, which is one of my favourites: rocks sometimes move.

I took this photo back on June 15, 2018. We were on one of many day trips. My heart surgery was just months away, and I wanted to make as many memories for my wife as possible. She had never travelled before, and I was taking her to as many places as possible because I was convinced I would not survive this surgery.  

Spoiler alert: I survived! This was a moment of sheer disbelief and overwhelming joy, a complete surprise to me. It was a turning point in my life, a moment that made me appreciate every breath I took.

On this day, we were visiting Feversham Gorge. I had no idea a gorge was only an hour from my home. Before we started to travel, I was ignorant of so many places to visit. I would soon learn of all the places to see and visit, all within a reasonable drive. This gorge was one of several stops on this day trip.

We would arrive at a spacious parking lot empty of other cars. While doing my research, I doubted the description of the gorge and expected something significantly less. The empty parking lot confirmed my suspicion that “gorge” was an exaggeration. Why else would the parking lot be empty? This was during a time when I thought there were only ten waterfalls in the world; I would also be proven wrong in my expectation that there was only one gorge. I was thinking mainly about the Grand Canyon. To my surprise, there was actually a gorge at Feversham Gorge Conservation Area, far exceeding my initial expectations.

We would head out of the parking lot and along a trail that immediately took us to the gorge. It was deep and steep, and at places, it was impossible to see the bottom. I was seriously impressed. Who knew there were gorges in this world and not far from home? We would continue along the path that hugged the gorge. At times, trees would block our view, and we had to be mindful of where we were stepping when we wanted a better view. The thrill of discovery and the beauty of the surroundings filled me with a sense of wonder and appreciation.

Charlene clearly enjoyed this hike. She led the way on the pathway. The gorge is not as large as the Grand Canyon, but still very impressive. At this point in the trail, it veered away and started to loop back to the parking lot.  

A loud, girlish scream!

Normally, if we are walking in the woods and there is a loud, girlish scream, it comes from me when I see a snake. I wouldn’t say I like snakes, especially when startled by their unexpected and unwanted presence.  

But I didn’t scream.

Charlene had taken a few steps back, and I was in near panic mode, thinking she had stumbled across a scaly creature that no one likes. Fortunately, I had my phone in hand and was able to snap a genuine picture of my wife. I saw what startled her.

She was walking, leaving the gorge behind and heading back to the car. She walked determinedly, thinking a rock was in front of her, and she had every intention of stepping on it.

Then it moved.

Then she screamed.

It happened to be a snapping turtle that was in the path. Why it was there, doing a pretty good imitation of a rock, is still a mystery to me, but it did give my wife a good start!

We have Google Home and every five seconds, it shows us one of the many pictures we have taken over the years. On the anniversary of this trip, these pictures of Charlene and the turtle are displayed. I love these photos because they capture a real moment—not a posed photograph, but one in complete candidacy.  

It’s a memory that I cherish, one that I revisit with a fond smile every year.

  • Feversham Gorge Conservation Area is a hidden gem, a free-access hiking trail alongside a breathtaking gorge.
  • The parking lot is large.
  • The gorge is not very big, but it still is impressive.
  • Like so many natural setting places, trees obstruct the view. Be very mindful of your surroundings and where you are stepping.
  • Check out my favourite map, All The Places We Have Been, for directions to this mini geological wonder.


Summer Road Trip

Today is the day I have planned for on our summer road trip since January. With only hours away, I am packed and waiting for Charlene to finish work.   This summer, we head to the East Coast. I started to build the itinerary months ago…

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