Thursday, August 15, 2019

Wilcox Pass to Tangle Falls August 15, 2019

Today is the day to do a traverse trip with my Thursday friends!  Twice I have hiked a partial out & back due to being on my own so this traverse from Wilcox Pass to Tangle Falls has been something I always thought I would like to do one day.  When I saw this would be an option for the day, I jumped on board on the bus and lounged back in luxury until it was go time.  Hike time came and we bolted off like there was no tomorrow being excited to get up close and almost personal with the glaciers.
We wasted no time in the trees and completed the elevation, for me, in record time.  
Those seniors are a force to be reckoned with.  
Huff! Puff!  Wait up, please!  Huff! Puff!
Look at that view!  I devoured it!  High above on the Icefield Parkway looking across to the Athabasca Glacier is an experience I will never take for granted.  Even more so when I see how small that glacier becomes as time passes.  I read a story this morning of where some guys were up there to play in the crevasses and while they were setting up their equipment and gearing up, they saw pockets of garbage (plastic water bottles and such) that had been left behind by tourists who would have been on the glacier bus tour.  The guys packed up the garbage and hiked it out.
This is zoomed in on the Athabasca Glacier and you can see the tiny dots on the left on the snow, those are the buses going up and parking to let the tourists out to walk around a bit.  The glacier is shrinking quickly.  
Now out in the open we have many kilometers to go surrounded by glaciers and mountain peaks with flower covered meadows in between. The temperature was perfect with a slight breeze and there you go, a sky full of those fluffy clouds that I love so much.
 today's wildlife viewing
 They did not budge and they were right there not far from the side of the trail.  
I zoomed in on this guy.  I wonder what that bulge is on the side of his face.
 boulders and glaciers
We reached the top of Wilcox Pass and made this location our lunch break.  This was the best spot to capture my destination shot too.  It looks like I should be able to reach out and touch that glacier.   Lunch was not that long as our preference was to move along and see more scenery.
We hiked across the Pass and along the meadows.  Our direction of aim is to the point at the bottom of that big mountain on the left.  There were streams and small creeks, steeping stones and little bridges all along the meadow.  Do you see the gecko?
 view along the way
We took a few minutes at this high point before beginning the descent which was steep at times.  I ask again, do you see the gecko?  My friends pointed it out.  They said it was there this time last year too.
 view as we are descending
 Now do you see the gecko?
I zoomed in for this shot.
 continuing with the descent which went on and on and on
 We reached a flat section and took another little break before beginning the next part of the descent.
It took awhile to get to this point, it was a bit slower going on some of the steeper parts and also there were some sections where the trail was quite over grown with bushes, a little light bushwhacking was in order. The descent began up at the bottom of that V.
We popped out into an area where we could now hear traffic and see the Icefield Parkway far below.  I only paid attention to the far off glacier view and the up close wildflower view.  Of course too, I paid attention to my feet on the trail as we began to descend again.
The trail lead us to a spot right beside the Tangle Falls.
We reached the end of the trail and a had view up the full entire length of Tangle Falls.
We crossed the Parkway to the parking lot on the other side and just placed a call to our driver to come pick us up as we were all there and ready to sit back in luxury and head for home.  In a matter of about 20 minutes we were all board smiling chatting laughing and expressing our pleasure with having just received and experienced a wonderful gift in today's journey. 

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