Sunday, September 20, 2009

Sunday at Sentinel

This was the perfect day to hike Larch Valley and Sentinel Pass near Moraine Lake in Banff National Park. The weather was iffy leaving Calgary at 7:45 am and this obviously deterred many folks from heading west. We had gorgeous weather and scenery and almost had the trail to ourselves. I saw, maybe 100 other people along the way (mostly on the return trip), not 1000 like the last time I was there a year ago to the day. This premier hike is in prime bear territory. Parks Canada has a Restricted Access law in place and if you are found to be believing you are above the law, feeling defiant and disobedient then you could be handed a hefty fine somewhere in the range of the low thousands of dollars. Numerous times along the trail we regrouped.
Sometimes I feel a little defiant and do what others won't! It doesn't get me into trouble where I may have to pay a fine if caught but it does get me into sketchy situations. From our minimum elevation to our maximum elevation, I get distracted and just have to investigate! This is my play time and it's all about having fun!
I am sensible though! There was no jumping for this summit shot! High on Sentinel Pass I could see Paradise Valley down below, behind me and I would rather be down there because I want to be there and not because of doing something sketchy or dicey. We all had turns getting our summit shots and then settled down for a lengthy period to savour scenery and lunch. Being up here, I can see why it is considered one of the "Premier Hikes" in Banff National Park.
The larch trees are turning but not quite at their most fabulous state yet! I would say next weekend will be golden! Fay Glacier was a sight to see when the sun was shining on it. I could even see blue on the edges. It looked like a soft covering of new snow over top of light blue ice. On our return trip, Moraine Lake teased us through the trees. The higher up, the more beautiful the color. I could not resist getting a photo of even a portion of this gem.
It's a longer drive from Calgary to get to this trail head. The distance of the hike was on the low end of the scale when it comes to hike distances for me. The weather was not the hottest today. But the reward! Talk about a reward! A-1! Tops! Gold! I think I may just have to make this one an annual event. It's been two for two!

To sum it all up! This Sunday at Sentinel was Sensational!

1 comment:

  1. I see fresh snow on the mountains! It was the same near Highwood Pass. Glad you had a great day. :)


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