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Painted Treasures: Rocking community connections in Terrace


A small rock with a heart-shaped balloon and the word "love" painted on it lays against the base of a tree.
Along with a great walk, Flo found "love" at Ferry Island.

I’ve walked the Ferry Island Walking Trail in Terrace nearly every day for the past year - thanks to my puppy, Libby. It’s the only off-leash dog area in town and it gives her the chance to grow her skills of "come" and "off," to find enticing things to smell, and to access an endless supply of tasty sticks to chew.

A dog walks in the water of a rocky river.
Libby touring Ferry Island.

Of course, I like it there too! I enjoy the flat trails that wind through the forest, the views of the Skeena River and snow capped mountains, and the little faces that are artfully carved into the bark of cottonwood trees.

Physical activity with physical distancing

In the more than twenty years I’ve lived here, I've walked this trail so often I feel I could do it with my eyes closed, as every bend and fork is familiar.

In an effort to practice physical distancing, I've been choosing less popular times to walk the trail (the added perk is that there are less distractions to lead Libby to exhibit "bad dog” behaviours too!). It’s a glorious feeling to have the trail to yourself – to simply be in the woods, enjoying the sounds, smells, and emergence of the signs of spring (confession: skunk cabbage makes me happy!).

Rock art treasures

I look forward to these walks - they give me a chance to connect with nature and clear my head after work. They're also a way to connect with my community.

These days, each walk is a bit of a scavenger hunt, as fellow Terrace citizens have been painting and placing rocks along the trail. It seems that each time I go, the rocks are moved or traded for new ones. I love the variety of images, artistic abilities, and messages. I've seen rocks that are finger painted by young hands, some that have stickers on them, others that have an inspiring quote, and, even once, a rock that functioned as a gift card for a free coffee at a local business.

A rock has an underwater ocean scene painted on it with seaweed, fish, and a star fish.
Woods meet water with this ocean-themed rock art!

I appreciate the use of a natural canvas like rocks and the glimpse into what is important to members of my community. This appreciation has inspired rock painting at our house - look for these beauties at Ferry Island soon!

A girl paints a rock.
Painting "rocks!" ...get it?
Four painted rocks have different designs on them.
Coming soon to Ferry Island!