Dear Reader (2020-08-08),
Sunday July 24 – Mt. Allan via Centennial Ridge < 16 km – Out and Back – With Michelle
Gillean had warned me, Leigh had warned me, and AllTrails warned me. This trail is not for the faint of leg or knee. Michelle and I meet in the Ribbon Creek parking a lot around 7:30 am and we begin a little latter after the ceremony of donning socks and boots. The first 2 km is along a series of old logging roads. We gain a little altitude and wonder about the warning. The well marked trail leaves a logging road, and takes a turn to the steep. Thus, begins a great long huff and puff section which eventually places us on a ridge looking down onto the lifts and ski runs of Nakiska (04 forward to the right).
We continue walking along the ridge to the what I call the rock garden. The wind is no longer benign. It has delivered a pelting drizzle. Lunch becomes soggy. My gloves only partially protect my fingers from the cold. We decide that another 45/60 minutes walk to the summit of Mt. Allan is not a must, and declare a false summit. We meet a dozen or more hikers in foul weather gear on our descent. By the time we reach the treeline, the rain has gone, and the sky has blue again.
Throughout this summer’s walks I have found hiking poles to be very useful and helpful. They do though have their limitations. On a particular steep section of the descent, I put too much weight on one of the poles. One pole bends and the other snaps in half. The now broken pole stops my forward fall, and I escape a gravel burn across the face. The broken pole goes partially into an outside pouch of the day pack. Near the trailhead, I adjust my pack only to find that I have lost half a broken pole somewhere in the previous 5k. I try not to leave a trace. It bothers me that I have left a trace and contributed to trail litter.
My camera is weather sealed but it is not immune to the elements, and therefore for some of the walk the camera is in my daypack. Today’s collection is therefore composed of images captured with my phone and my camera (Nikon D7100). I am not happy with my rock garden photo (10) and I hope to return before the winter winds.
As always your comments are sought and welcomed. Please come back on Monday for the first of 3 walks along the Icefields Parkway.
Appendix: Who are these People.
Gillean Daffern is a writer and walker who has written and continues to update the definitive guide to walking in Kananaskis country, the 5 volume Kananaskis Country Trail Guide.
Leigh McAdam is a recent and now valued addition to my digital resource collection. Leigh is a traveler adventurer and blogger.
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