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It is February, Halifax, Nova Scotia. I board an early morning flight to the Magdalen Islands, or the Maggies as the locals say, in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Flung far off the coast of Quebec, the archipelago juts out of the ocean in splendid isolation. Sculpted by wind, waves, and forever time, the whimsical islands consist of sandstone cliffs, marching sand dunes, and the occasional salt marsh. Sprinkled upon these natural habitats is a distinctly French fishing culture, asleep for now, awaiting the breath of spring.

At this high latitude the subarctic seascape outside my jet window is otherworldly to a southerner from Louisiana's bayou country. The frozen ocean is cracked like a jigsaw puzzzle. Jagged floes, several feet thick, slide over the sea surface like tectonic plates. I can almost hear the ice moan as it is heaved skyward, one "plate" on top of the other, cast into grotesque form by the collisional forces.

Somewhere out there, in the vast expanse of ice, is my quest, a days old harp seal pup that is the subject of my next photograph. It wasn't always this way. (next photo)


© Danny Kimberlin 2015