I was so indecisive on whether to hike up Prairie Mountain today, right up until the moment I took my first step towards the trail. I wanted an easy, short day with mountain views.
I got the easy, short day but no mountain views. The reasons for being indecisive were first of all the weather was not looking that great. I just finished reading that vehicles were broken into in that area on Saturday. I was soloing! I had hoped there would be a few cars already there which meant folks would already be ahead of me on the trail and that, in fact, was the case. Although I ended up passing them as they were slip sliding all over the place and smart me had icers on. I was long gone!
The sky was totally overcast with a few flurries flurrying around. Like I said, I had no views. But once up top, I had the mountain to myself for awhile. Thankfully it was warm. Once I reached the summit, I carried on down the backside for a short stretch as you can see in the photo on the right. Being alone, I didn't want to venture too far but I'm curious to know how far one could go.
I came back to the cairn to get my summit shot and by the time I got there a soloing fellow and his dog showed up. He took this photo. He didn't stick around long. He took my photo and was gone, running! Yes, running, him and his dog!
I sat on the edge of the mountain to dine where I had somewhat of a view of Canyon Creek down below. This was as good as it got for me. I'll take it! I think sitting on a mountain side like this with hardly any view still beats laying on my sofa with a fantastic view of the TV.
There is something to be said for solitude on a mountain top! I thoroughly enjoyed it. As I started my descent, the sky began to clear so my timing was off for weather. But, during my descent, I met half of Calgary ascending. So my timing was right for finding solitude. The total trip took 2:48 and that includes stops for photos and for lunch. I was pleased with myself for just going ahead and doing it and would definitely consider hiking that one again solo. I was surprised at the number of solo hikers I met as I was heading down.
It's been a busy, active last few days! My extra long weekend is coming to an end. It's back to reality tomorrow but just for four days!