Friday, May 29, 2020

Missinglink Mountain May 29, 2020

Driving West of Turner Valley you will eventually enter into Sheep Valley Provincial Park which is foothillish-like.  There are a multitude of hiking opportunities that grant you views of the big mountains even further west.  Our destination for today was to reach the summit of Missinglink Mountain.  We did reach it after lots of time spent route finding, creek crossing and bushwhacking.  We made it more of an adventure rather than picking the easiest way up and down.  We opted for a big loop which would give us more time out there in our mountain playground on this beautiful summer-like spring day.   
Geared up and ready to go early in the morning, we had the nice lighting, warm temperature already, no wind and we owned the parking lot.  It was good to see the outhouse was open, it was recently cleaned and stocked with the essentials.   Off we went, across the road, east a bit and then the adventure began.
I passed on snapping photos while we paid attention to getting where we needed to go to get where we wanted to be.  When we did reach the summit of Missinglink Mountain, we invested loads of time enjoying everything about a summit visit.  I went for the photo opportunities right away.
 the summit cairn
 The summit area had many crocuses scattered about.  
They were at their prime and so very pretty.
 my summit shot with Bluerock Mountain behind me
We ate, we drank, we took photos, we admired the views, we stretched a bit, we sat and sat and just continued to sit.  At some point you do need to carry on and finally we packed up and moved on down the mountain.  We followed a short ridge where the great views continued.
 at the edge of the ridge before heading into the forest
It was time again to pass on snapping photos while we paid attention to getting where we needed to go to get where we wanted to be.  We made it to the wide open slope and the only thing left was to work our way down.  This is a gentler part of the slope nearing the bottom.
 just wind through this valley to reach the road

We reached the road and had a bit of a hike back to the starting point.  We completed the big loop, geared down, hopped in our cars and hit the highway home.  This was a great Friday to end the work week, well the kind of work we do these days, well it does not necessarily end of a Friday these days.  What day is it?  What month is it ?  I know it's 2020!   

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Inglewood Bird Sanctuary & Pearce Estates May 27, 2020

It was time again to share a few hours filling up on the sights & sounds, fresh air, exercise and our life happenings.  My friend had never been to the Sanctuary and neither of us had wandered through the Estates.  We were granted a glorious day of pure sunshine and pretty scenery.  The birds were not plentiful, but the greenery was and the people were plentiful too.  Our time was filled with laps looking for birds, a visit to the outdoor learning centre, lunch on the rocks at Harvey Passage, exploring around the Estates and then strolling back for another Sanctuary lap before heading on home.      

Monday, May 25, 2020

Grass Pass Above & Beyond May 25, 2020

Whatever Mother Nature presents to you, accept it and lean into it!  We wandered, bushwhacked and route found from Grass Pass up to some of the Bull Creek Hills, down to the meadows off Wileman Creek, out towards the Boundary Pine and then down the backside out to the 541.  We had wind, we had cold, we had snow, mud, ice and water to contend with.  We leaned into it all and embraced it being thankful we could be "out & about" in our mountain playground.
The crocuses were in their prime and they were plentiful, in fact, there were hundreds and hundreds.  Spring comes a bit later in the Foothills and that affords me a long season to enjoy these beautiful wildflowers.  Being a dull sky day with not the greatest far off views, my attention leaned towards the ground cover full of flowers.   
While wandering about, we ended up in new places to both of us and spied other areas to venture to another day.  It was quiet here this Monday, we saw a couple and a soloist and exchanged pleasantries with both parties.  I always enjoy hanging out in this area. There is something in the wildness here that appeals to my senses.  Many hours later we arrived back at our vehicles feeling soothed, content and ready to head back to reality!   

Sunday, May 24, 2020

rainy days & short get-aways

It was a short week to begin with but it felt even shorter even though some of the weekdays we were deluged with rain and it felt like it would never end.  During the deluges I got lost in crafting to find my way through those long days. When the sun shone, I headed out to get lost in nature.  It's easy to find ways to fill these May Days and now as this week ended, we head into the final week that is already looking like it will be filled with high notes!
"Sunflower Bouquet" is now complete except for a frame.  
My intentions are to support a local small business nearby.  
A simple brownish wood frame is my thinking to add the final touch.
We are certainly not riding on a rainbow right now 
but I have faith things will look brighter down the road!

One morning after the rain, I hiked down through Confluence Park and along Nose Creek looking to photograph rain drops on crocuses.  The crocuses had seen better days and in this area of our city they are now beyond their prime.  It was a quiet morning except for the songs from the birds.  My focus shifted and these are some of the photos I came away with.  This place and the things I see and hear while here have become my meditation and a great way to kick of a day!

With a bright and sunny sky forecasted for this Sunday, I headed west then south to hike around Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park.  I missed out on being there for sunrise but I did arrive to see a surreal scene of the valley floor and the Bow River being covered in fog.  The last time I was here Yodel was closed, this time it was wide open and this was the wide open view from the top of Yodel.  I enjoyed the birds singing again, I got to see the rain drops on flowers and a hundred spunned webs.  

Monday, May 18, 2020

living life on the May long weekend

My original intentions were to enjoy my home & deck & yard for the three days of this May long weekend.  We were being gifted a beautiful forecast for the entire time which meant the city would empty out into the foothills which I did not want to get caught up in.  As the weekend approached, I wanted to be "out & about" enjoying this gift.  I laid my cards out and figured how to play them right to make for a quiet, safe, enjoyable long weekend not at home but out there!

Saturday@Kananaskis  I packed a picnic along with my lawn chair and hammock then hit the highway very early to visit my favourite places along Highway 40.  I walked along the shore of the Upper Kananaskis Lake, visited Lower Lake, Canyon Day Use, Boulton Bridge and Wedge Pond.  At Wedge Pond I set up my chair, enjoyed a spot of tea and stretched out taking in the views and the mountain air.  Nap time came soon after and I found the perfect site at Mt Lorette Ponds to hang my hammock and settled into it to while away an hour or so.  Early does it and I got to enjoy the peace and quiet of Kananaskis!   

Sunday@Forgetmenot Pond  Sunrise is so early these days that it was rising as I drove along Route 66 on the way to my destination for breakfast.  As I pulled into the parking lot at Forgetmenot Pond, I saw a sight that just melted my heart.  I have seen the wild mustang horses many times but this was the first time for seeing a baby with Mom.  If I saw nothing else today, that would be OK.  But, once down by the Pond, the sights continued to be sweet.  A thin layer of ice was present in spots which added to the prettiness.  My favourite picnic spot was available, in fact all spots were available.  Breakfast in the Park at the Pond was Perfect!  Early does it and I got to enjoy the peace and quiet of Forgetmenot Pond!

Monday@Powderface & Prairie Creeks  The early bird owns the trails!  I owned the Powderface Creek + Prairie Link + Prairie Creek Loop up until about the last kilometre.  It was a true spring hike with mud, water, ice, snow, buds and crocuses.  It was a fine morning to be out here having the blue sky filled with fluffy puffy clouds, the ground cover turning green and hearing the creek running.  My sense is after the rain we are due to receive the next few days, the trails in this area may become an unpassable mess.  Early does it and I got to enjoy the peace and quiet of Powderface+Prairie Creeks Loop!

Friday, May 15, 2020

mid week days in the life of

The mountains are on my mind!  

Incorporating lots of pleasure with a little bit of business has been the theme when I spend time with my sister these days.  It takes a couple of hours to accomplish the full plan in place and that was the case at Carburn Park on Wednesday the 13th.  Once the business dealings were done, off we went.  She had never been here before, she quite liked it and I have a feeling we may end up meeting here again.  As you can see the pelicans are back, they know no borders nor boundaries.   Between walking around the pond and then by the river, we got our fill of water, fresh air and got caught up on what our lifes' plans might look like down the road.  While I may not be liking what our world has come to these days, I am thankful for the sweet sister time that is coming from this! 

One for me, one for you, one for a garden, one for a collection, one for a friend, and a surprise for someone else!  With a donation of rocks, with a request for a painted rock and with a curb-side pick-up to add colors to my collection,  I devoted a few hours during the news hours to lay down some of my favourite things onto stone canvases.  If these bring a smile then I feel I accomplished something!

We were due for another round of sharing hours of chitter-chatter about everything and anything!  This time for this round, on Thursday the 14th, we worked our way around the Glenmore Reservoir starting and finishing at the big "H" at Heritage Park.  This great big loop consisted of paved and dirt paths, of detouring down to the water and venturing off into the forests.  It had been years since I circumnavigated the Reservoir, the last time would have been in my running years when I ran the Calgary Police Half-Marathon.   That was long ago enough that today's route seemed brand new to me.  Around five hours after we started, we were back at the big "H".  While we were not successful at solving the world's problems, we were successful at smiling and laughing lots, filling our lungs with fresh air and contributing to our hearts being happy and healthy!

Monday, May 11, 2020

Nosey May Days

Go but lay low is what my heart told me!  Early Saturday morning I went for a walk around Nose Creek again.  On this visit, I ventured off to a new to me meadow curious as to what I might find there.  This was the perfect open space to lay low and get my nose into snapping photographs as it was blanketed in crocuses. Bouquets were in abundance with dozens and dozens growing side by side in small spaces.  Of the multitude of bouquets, George picked the same bunch as me to get his nose into.  Veering off the Nose Creek main trails is leading me to sweet discoveries!  
such a sweet discovery
I know where my hearts belong!

While dinner cooks, while the daily updates are presented, while my hair is drying, while the washer is running, I get my nose into the paints to while away the minutes.  This is one of the ways I am making the most of May moments.  I am learning I like to work on smooth rocks.

In keeping with the nosey theme, I spent two hours up on Nose Hill this Mother's Day morning.  The radar showed an open window and I went for it but on the mere minutes drive there, the window closed.  It then opened long enough for me to capture a photo of the sun peaking through and then the window closed and stayed closed.  I stayed and kept on with my intended route.  It was winter-like enough that many layers, gloves and hat were necessary.  Just like yesterday, I got my nose into the crocus bouquets.  By the time I was nearing the end of the 8kms enough snow had accumulated to build a snowman.  With the bumper crop of crocuses everywhere this year, I have been wondering is this a sign the wildflower season will be similar!