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Tag Archives: mountains

Kelley and Tony’s Wedding

Back in August, Adena and I were invited to photograph the wedding of Kelley Fea and Anthony Kroeker.  We have been friends of Kelley’s family for years, and her maid of honor suggested as they were scrambling to find photographers that they might give us a try.  We talked it over and decided to sign on for the gig.  It’s always harder to work for friends and family on gigs like this, as you feel the expectation is so much higher – weddings are a one-shot opportunity and we didn’t want to disappoint!  When we met up with Kelley and her family at the Glencoe Golf and Country Club (the venue), we got even more nervous… we’re signed on to do it, and we need to work hard to get it right.  Still, we are really glad we went, as it was a beautiful wedding with lots of fun people and a terrific theme.  It would certainly be a day to remember!

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Fall Hike up Pocaterra Ridge

Route map and elevation profile.

With a glorious long fall in Alberta, we attacked Pocaterra Ridge.  I had to make a run to Canmore to pick up my trekking poles first (glad I did), so after that and a fill-up I drove out to the trailhead at Highwood Pass.  We had eight people in our group – a pretty large group!  The advantage here is that we had enough cars to do this as a point-to-point hike; we weren’t forced into an out-and-back.  I ate a Subway while I waited for the other folks to show up and set up the shuttle, and then off we went.

A beautiful hike through meadows that were full of wildflowers not a month ago led to the base of the ridge.  The smell of fall was everywhere, with the damp, moderately pungent but still refreshing odour of disappearing vegetation omnipresent.  The ridge itself climbs out of the meadows with a bit of a trudge, but when you reach the top you’re rewarded with a valley view on the left and hwy 40 on your right.  A technical – but spectacular – traverse of the ridge leads you to a steep and long downhill through trees to the north end of the trail, where we’d stashed a car for shuttling.  This descent is really made easier with trekking poles.  On the south end before the ridge, the Larch trees were still full of yellow needles, while on the north end they were bare.  Just awesome.

It’s fair to say that when I was on top of the ridge I was in exactly the place on the planet I wanted to be at exactly the time I wanted to be there.  That should be evident from my grinning like an idiot in the video, below.  I’ll get some photos up of this eventually, but here’s what Garmin and Strava had to say about the hike.  Even the drive in and out was spectacular and relaxing – given the lateness of the season, there was very little traffic; not a motor-home to be seen on highway 40, which can be a bit of a slow drive in the peak season!

Riding… Snacking…

Photo evidence! Bikes parked at the candy shop.

Well, as summer winds down, we reflect.  With family and things happening around us, we didn’t get a chance to ride as much as we wanted.  We did do a couple of great (easy, low-impact) rides with our friends Russ and Lucie though, and I thought I’d share.  We did the Canmore-Banff Legacy trail along the river, and we also did a loop from our house to downtown Calgary and back.  In both cases, we took full advantage of our surroundings halfway through the rides to snack.  Hey, if you’re riding, you need to reload, right?

Canmore-Banff Legacy Trail

Here’s the GPS plot.  First off, we need a rematch on this ride.  It was Adena’s first ride on her roadie in quite some time, and we ended up stopping a few times to make adjustments and repairs as we went.  That’s fine, but it detracted from the rhythm of riding a bit.  She was thrilled, though; she loves going fast on the road bike way more than riding her mountain bike.  Whenever we’d stop to make an adjustment, it was like she was being tortured… she wanted to go!

The only trouble is that the trail starts on the Canmore side just at the park gates.  There’s also nowhere to park there.  The way we did it was to park in Harvie Heights (right here), ride along a trail towards the park gates, and then go the wrong way over a one-way overpass to the other side of the highway.  Once there, we rode about 1km up the Trans-Canada against the flow of traffic (the move looked like this going from B to A).  A bit unnerving, but there were lots of people making the journey and it’s the only way to hook it up.  Access:  a small oversight on the trail designers’ part!

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Old Fernie Footage 1

I was talking to a friend about riding a couple of days ago, and then that night while I was doing some work on my home computer I kind of stumbled upon some old footage I took at Fernie in 2010.  I’m not that talented a downhill rider, but I love mountain biking and I had fun watching some of this!!  The footage takes up a lot of disk space for not ever being seen, so I decided to work some of it up to post so I could ditch the raw footage (there’s a lot of standing around before runs).

Here’s post #1, which I think is Bin Loggin’.  Phil and I are following a guide who we hung out with for a bit and who gave us some pointers on how not to suck so much.  Phil took those pointers to heart, but they didn’t really sink in for me.  I guess that means:  rematch!!  Stay tuned for more old footage from this trip.

The tourists are getting restless

Axe-Man and his side-kick... The Tripod.

I’m starting to get a little concerned about the state of things in the mountains.  Let’s be honest, tourists can be frightening.  No more so than this guy, who we found at Lake Minnewanka walking back to the parking lot.

We were out there just before Sabrina was born for a last minute three-family-member day out in the open.  Tourists are everywhere, and you can usually tell them from the locals.  I’m not sure if this guy was just trying to fit in, or if he had something else on his mind.  Still, he is clearly a tourist.  The wardrobe gives it away.  There are not many locals who will wear white loafers while out for a jaunt in the wilderness.  What was confusing though, and what led to me thinking he might be trying (a bit too hard) to fit in was his equipment.  What’s with the axe?!  I’m struggling to figure out what a tourist would need with an axe, so I’m now a little scared of tourists.

The only other possible explanation is that his name is Axe-Man, and he’s a super-hero.  The guy walking beside him, obviously that’s his side-kick:  The Tripod.

Wicked ski day

View from the top of Lookout Mountain

This was last weekend, but it was an awesome day.  This post is for Migo and Russ’ benefit:  look what you missed!! Considering the weather the day before (check the previous post), we were amazed when we woke up and there was not a bloody cloud in the sky.  You never know at Sunshine though (the name “Sunshine” is sometimes a bit of a misnomer), so we kept our fingers crossed as we drove out.  Well, let me tell you.  20 fresh cm of winter snow (this was not the spring butter), and not a cloud in the sky at Sunshine either.  Excellent ski day, my legs were bloody sore by lunch time.

Video of a few runs after the break!

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