Saturday, August 26, 2017

Mount Bourgeau August 26 2017

July and August of this summer have been filled with an all time high of fabulous things.  With August winding down and today being the last opportunity for a hike this month, in fact this summer, I wanted a day that went out with a bang, a packed punch,  a wam bam pow, and a gigantic WOW!   The unusals were on board plus a couple of others who were game to take on the challenge of the big day and catching summit fever from me for the first time.  Mount Bourgeau batten down your hatches, here we come!  
We were keeners with the early start and second in line to the trail head parking lot.  It was crisp and cool and ideal for the long trek up through the forest.  It's conversation that gets you through this section because the views are very minimal.  When we did get one, I captured it.
We had a very short stop at Bourgeau Lake then made our way to where it would be wide open for the next many many hours. Fireweed was still in bloom and carpeted large areas of the meadows leading up to Harvey Pass.
lake well below Harvey Pass
lake behind us before heading up to Harvey Pass
lake hiding in the meadow
We took a longer snack break here at the lake at Harvey Pass.  We were getting ready for the final long steep push to the summit of Mount Bourgeau and we needed maybe about 60 to 90 minutes worth of fuel to get us there.
We began our assult on the ascent. We took our time and made sure to appreciate every amazing view and there were many.   I captured a part of Bourgeau Lake well below us.  This was as close to the edge as I felt comfortable with.
Mount Temple many miles away
I was already feeling high and we were not at the summit yet.  I really like all the layers and colors of mountain peaks as far as the eye could see.  I like how even and level they seem to be from one end to the other.  Of course, I was happy a fluffy puffy cloud developed for us.
We captured our solo summit shots as soon as we arrived and this is mine.
I am so proud of you Flying Finn.
I was pleased to be able to share in your spotlight.
We moved off to the side and gathered around to dine.  We had front row seating, a window with a view, prime time tickets to witness amazing scenery in all directions.  I get restless just sitting after I eat.  I could feel something overtake me.  It's happening again!  I was catching that fever!
It was very contagious today!
Fever pitch was at an all time high!
The fever can wear you out or energize you.  I like to think we were now energized so it was a good time to keep the momemtun up and begin our long descent.  We geared up and I headed off.....
.....and my friends followed.....
view as we worked our way down
When Mount Assiniboine came into view again we checked her out.  Then all of a sudden a big plume of smoke billowed up.  It almost looked like a nuclear explosion.  It got bigger and bigger, then is spread, this disipated then more plumes billowed.  It did not look good and we just hoped things were going to be OK over in that area.
this was the only cloud in the whole sky that looked like this
We arrived back at Harvey Pass and opted to rest for a short while and snack yet again.  
We also wanted to watch over in the Assiniboine direction.  
looking back up at where Mount Bourgeau's summit is and where we were
colorful lake
A few of us circled around that another little green lake that was somewhat hidden.  It took on a whole new look when we reached the back side of it.  You can see the trail that leads up to Harvey Pass and the summit of Mount Bourgeau but it was the golden colors in the water that was my main focus.
All the steep rough sections were out of the way now.  I felt a little frazzled from what we accomplished already and knowing we still had a long way to go yet, I made an effort to stay focused and to get this done.  We left Bourgeau Lake, aimed for the trees and struck up conversations again hoping this would make the distance and time fly.  It felt more like time was suspended as we hiked down the last seven kilometers in the forest.

My feet were sore and they were barking by the time we reached the parking lot.  I was thankful we were finished.  I was even more thankful that we experienced such an amazing day and that I got to share it with a crew of fun friends.  I hope you felt the bang, punch, pow and WOW today and that you will be game to catch the fever with me again on another one of those summits out there.  

Thank you for today!


  1. What was the smoke? I am envious of your nice clean air.

    1. Mary, we are experiencing what you are with the fires and the smoke but not to the extent you are. A lightning strike hit in Kootenay National Park back on July 15th and it has been burning ever since. It spread into Assiniboine National Park on the edge of Banff National Park. Lots of hiking trails and backcountry campgrounds have been closed. While there was nothing specifically mentioned in the updates about that big plume it may have been due to the high winds that day. The fires will probably not go out until the snow starts to fall. We have been lucky the last little while with some clear air yet on Saturday we could smell smoke the whole day while hiking. At times the air quality is very bad here in Calgary.


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