Tuesday, July 27, 2010


Ever since I started making recordings I have been struck with how tough it is to get good clean ambient recordings without having any unwanted hum or background hiss on the track, if you really listen you'll notice that theres a substantial amount of noise pollution in our day to day lives. So while we were camping at Alces lake in Whiteswan provincial park twenty two kilometers from the nearest paved road I thought that on a moonless night far away from any human beings would be the perfect time and place to get some ambient recordings of the forest that surround the lake. I drove for about ten minutes on the dark dirt road stopping and turning off the engine every couple hundred meters or so to have a listen to the sounds outside. Eventually I just chose a random spot since they all sounded about the same, it was quiet, not a breeze, not a cricket, not a sound, everything was dead still.

I stepped out and left the the car with its headlights on the road for illumination, set up my stereo microphone on a tripod and took a few steps into the black forest and began recording. Its at this point when I realized that my recorder which I had recently acquired had an electronic fault that embedded a crackle in the recordings making it impossible to get decent sound, frustrated, I made my way back to the car. As I was approaching I noticed that mosquitoes, moths, beetles and many other insects attracted by the headlight were floating around the front of the car. Despite the crackle I set up my microphone just in front of the right headlight and began recording. About two and half minutes into the recording I heard a chilling sound coming from the forest to my left. Sharp and decisive snapping sounds moving from the left of where I was facing to the far left behind me. You can't really tell from the recording but it was moving fast and didn't seem to disturb anything around it.. it just went "snap, snap, snap!" as it moved, I stood still and listened as it passed to my left eventually it went further and further away until I couldn't hear it anymore. I have no idea what it was, if you know, please let me know or post your best guesses under the comments section.

- Strange sounds in the forest, (Apologies for the poor audio quality), Alces Lake, Whiteswan Provincial Park, BC (01:16 min, Please use headphones where possible), 2010

The End.

1 comment:

Gerhard van Wyk said...

It was Gerhard van Wyk