We were driving home to Kamloops from the east on a late autumn afternoon. The sun was hiding behind some clouds and made such a pretty scene that we had to find a spot to pull over and get that photo. As often happens within moments, the clouds had moved and the photo opp was gone but never is there not another pretty picture to see on our drives around Kamloops.
|Sun setting on the South Thompson River|
The South Thompson River was as calm as a placid lake would be, the river is at its' seasonal low levels without the run-off waters coming from the Shuswap Lakes. The reflections on the river were the autumn colors from the poplar, cottonwood and birch trees along the riverbank scattered among the evergreens. The combinations of nature at work this time of year make a very pretty picture.
|Ducks swimming on the South Thompson River|
Autumn, as defined in the dictionary for the northern hemisphere, is 'the third season of the year' and includes September, October and November. They also use the term 'fall' in the definition, which originates from the fact the leaves fall from the trees which became the term used since the 1500's. Fall is the term that we use often in our world so it was a surprise to learn from my English nephew, that it is not necessarily a familiar term in the British English language, they use 'autumn' almost exclusively.
|Autumn color reflections on the South Thompson River|
There are several reasons why the leaves turn color in autumn and some of those are shorter days of sunlight as well as cooler temperatures, which explains why the leaves in the higher levels will be showing their colors sooner than those in the valley. The timeframe for the change of color varies regionally, as well, within those autumn months.
|Fallen leaves cover the banks of the South Thompson River|
Without long warm days of summer needed to produce enough sugar, chlorophyll dwindles and these factors allow the other colors in leaves to come through. When the supply lessons and the veins in the leaves eventually become clogged, they then fall off the tree. The sun feels warm as it sinks in the west but the temperature quickly drops once the sun is out of sight, even when just behind the clouds.
|Sun setting scenery on the South Thompson River|
The sun casts long shadows and a pretty warm color on all that we see on our stop at the rivers' edge. We'd enjoyed another beautiful fall day on the North Thompson River
with great views, too. Our days of autumn will soon be over and we'll be into our next Kamloops season, and that will be winter. The beauty of our winter season is also one to enjoy, but hopefully we still have a little while before that happens.