My prayers go out to all those who have been forced from their homes because of the wildfires. My thoughts are with those who are working tirelessly at containing the fires. I feel for those who have to alter their vacation plans because trails and campgrounds (front and back country) have been closed. Best wishes to those whose health has been affected by the smoke. I shared today with two friends who are on the same page as me in many ways. We love our mountain time and our hearts are torn for what is occurring in Banff and Kootenay National Parks.
We made a change in plan for our hiking location today to an area where we thought the smoke would not be as dense. We picked Windy Peak Hills on the southeast corner of Kananaskis. We noticed conditions were a bit better than in the city. Yet we knew too that our focus for the day would be right in front of our eyes and not far off in the distance.
Our goal was to make it to the summit, Windy Peak. That meant we would have many hills to climb up and down along the way. The hills were very green even though it was very dry and has been for quite some time. This was as far as we could clearly see.
I wondered how the smoke would be affecting the wildlife.
This coyote and I caught each others eye and then it turned and walked away.
At times I could smell smoke but for the most part it did not bother me. We thought be strong and fight this fire. It took some time but we did reach the high point of Windy Peak Hills at Windy Peak and captured our summit shot. We took time to dine and admire the wildflowers around us. We were quiet and I believe we were all being thoughtful of one thing or another.
I really enjoy hiking and seeing what is out there and up there. I have been using my summer pack and recently sewed my new Iceland patch onto it. My camera is always close at hand. I shared with my friends how I feel the need to take photographs. I am not sure what that is all about but it is a part of my being "out & about".
I thought about lots of things today when I quietly hiked along with my friends. I thought about my friends coming to visit and how I want them to see the beautiful playground that is out my door. I don't believe time is on our side for this smoke to clear before they arrive and we begin hiking. Today we could only see silhouettes and outlines away out there and that was about it.
As the afternoon was drawing on we saw a bit more blue. The winds picked up and moved some of the smoke away. We chatted on our way to hike Windy Peak Hills where it is always windy that either the wind will bring the smoke in or blow it out. My wish is to share clear summit shots with grand vistas with my visiting friends. I can only hope!
focusing on what is right in front of our eyes
As we climbed one last hill it looked even bluer. I began to wonder what it would be like when we arrived back in the city. I wondered what was occurring in Banff and Kooteney National Parks, I hoped everyone was safe and that the fire did not expand. My heart is torn and I pray for the best for everything and everyone.
We completed our hike ending up back at Tear Drop Pond.
It is surrounded by fireweed.
Fireweed grows where once there was a fire!
Our distance was minimal, the elevation gain was significant, the temperature was perfect, the scenery was nice( we have been spoiled but we are experts at finding beauty where ever), the company was the best and our hearts were full of care and concern for our mountain playground and for what other things that are on a more personal note for each of us.
sending prayers and best wishes from