Saturday, October 5, 2019

Dinosaur Provincial Park Hike October 5, 2019

While I am feeling somewhat ready in ways for what Mother Nature has to offer us winter-wise, I don't feel quite ready to let autumn go.  I need more of the earthy, orangy, yellowy tones and I was rather certain I could get my fill of that if I headed in a desert direction.  Having recently been to The Badlands in Drumheller I was not keen to go back so soon, so drove the easy drive to Dinosaur Provincial Park near Brooks.  
I spent three nights here in September of 2018 in a Comfort Camping Unit.  This morning after arriving  in The Park and walking over to the edge of the river to begin my hike, for a few seconds I wished I was staying here again.
The campground was busy for this time of year.  I walked by it and aimed for The Badlands Trail first. The morning light was perfect and made for very easy photography shots.  There was no one here, I took my time and just took it all in.
 the light changed, the colors changed, the landscape changed

It was very soon into the hike that I already needed to remove a layer.  It was quite soon too that confirmation set in that a good choice was made to come here and I was being rewarded with what I came for.   I saw small scattered spots of snow.  The balance of the area was dry which meant it was easy to get on top of the formations.
 a trail leading to landscape of another kind & color

Just like on Thursday when I was in amongst all the ice & glaciers and wondered "where on earth am I",  today I felt that same sentiment.  This landscape is so incredible and it is hard to believe it is only a two hour drive from my front door.
Then I came upon a stairway that lead to yet again colors & landscape of another variety! 
After capturing this photo and zooming in to see that it was crisp, I then saw the deer was in the shot.  
bubbly clouds & bubbly clay
In one section there was just enough snow to build a snowman.  
After building it, I then transported it from the shade to sit on this boulder in the sun.  
I am sure it would not last long here.  
There were many opportunities along the hike where it was easy to become one with the desert.
some sights along the way that captured my attention
Watch where you sit and place your hands in the desert!
I was very cautious!
I arrived back at the campground and meandered through it and along the river.  
Not near ready to call it a day, I continued on to another area where I knew it would eventually lead me back to where I started the day.  A wooden staircase leads from the far end of the campground up to a whole different kind of desert.  The formations are much more defined here.

a tree perched high on a hoodoo
It was now time to find my way out of here.  In this area the trail is not as defined and there are many opportunites to go off and explore.  I just had to get up high again and see my surroundings to know what direction I needed to head to get back to where I started hiking a few hours ago.
I made it back then geared down.  The Creteaous Cafe was open so I purchased a piece of carrot cake to pair with my tea.  It was so beautiful right now, I once again wished I was staying the night.  I just sat and thought for a few minutes how thankful I was to experience such a glorious day in the desert.

The route I hiked.

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