October 29: At this time of year the sun rises over the ocean with islands and the distant mountains visible if the air is clear. The pre-dawn light cast light shadows from behind the mountains, seemingly like a volcanic plumes, and then the sun finally rose. 

Turning around and heading upslope a bit at an angle, there was a squirrel sat still on the stump of an Arbutus tree, bathing in the red light of the rising sun. Once the squirrel had decided to move on, I took a photo of the trees: one can see the stump, but squirrel-less. 

Later my eldest daughter commented that it was "Squirrel Movie with Popcorn". 

About the subjects: 
There are two kinds of native squirrels in southern BC: the Red Squirrel with rusty-red fur and a white front, and the Douglas Squirrel with reddish-brown fur and a yellowish breast. This looks like a Red Squirrel. As for the mushroom it was eating, squirrels can apparently eat mushrooms that are toxic to many other animals, including the deadly members of the Amanitas.

The Garry Oak Ecosystem (the Garry Oak / Douglas Fir stand of trees): East Vancouver Island is home to this special forest mosaic which represents one of the richest ecosystems in BC. There are many photos of gnarly Garry Oaks elsewhere in this website.
And as for the dawn sunrise, that is the Salish Sea - encompassing the Strait of Georgia and south to Puget Sound - spotted with the Southern Gulf and San Juan Islands, with the drama of Mt Baker - part of the Northern Cascades - in the distance.  



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