Sunday, March 27, 2011

It’s Blog Time–Prairie Mountain!

Well, this may have happened a few weeks ago, and I may not have blogged about it recently, but that doesn’t mean I can’t blog about it now. Muahahaha, here I go!

GPS data can be found here.

Prairie Mountain 002

I never even really knew that Prairie Mountain existed. I knew of Prairie Link Trail and Prairie Creek. But deep in Kananaskis, there is a mountain named after a Prairie. Very interesting.


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Yes, yes, that is me, sitting on the way up. I also may be holding a snowball. That snowball may have been lobbed at someone else.


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It’s nice living so close to the mountains because they are just so accessible. The weather may have been cloudy at first, but as you will see it got phenomenal towards the top.


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Lots of snow near the top, and clearing weather too.


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Yes, another picture of me sitting. But I will give a shout-out to my mukluks. ahem…. HEY!!!


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Trees covered in frost are just so pretty. Picture worthy Smile


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See, I know how to stand!


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We had some fun practicing our flying abilities. I love powdery snow. This is definitely something you cannot do in summer, lol!


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Post-flight. I still haven’t earned my wings, but trying has never been so much fun!


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The final trudge towards the summit. It was truly amazing because we came through the clouds to a sea below us.


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The sea of clouds only broken by the peaks of the Rockies. This is what it’s all about. Peaks such as Banded, Outlaw, Glasgow and Cornwall, along with Nihahi Ridge all became visible. The view truly inspires me to climb and continue to do so forever.


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The ridge along the summit trek. While it’s not the highest or most difficult summit, it’s views truly say that bigger isn’t always better. Don’t fall to the right. For some strange reason, we wanted to though…


Prairie Mountain 037 One of the views from the top. Moose Mountain to the north and Calgary would be to the east. Luckily, the clouds covered the city and you could see nothing but a sea of clouds to the east and mountains to the west. A winter paradise!


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Incredible views. A true gem. I had no idea that the views would be so spectacular.


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Banded (Toblerone), Outlaw and Glasgow/Cornwall (hidden behind). These mountains are visible from home and now I finally have identified them. I hope to summit them someday.


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Winter beauty. A sight like no other, and being the first people on the mountain pretty much guarantees serenity. This is why I love to climb.


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Another view from the summit. This would be looking northwest.


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View from the top. A good place to be with good friends!


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This is not the summit, but what we thought to be a frozen hibernating bear. A perfect opportunity to be a goof, something at which I excel.


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On the way back down, I tripped and fell. Good thing there was a camera ready.


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On the descent, we met a few people making their way to the top and I was reminded that we were lucky to be the first one’s up. As the clouds cleared, we could easily see (and hear) the Elbow River below us.


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And what better way to end a summit trip with some wildlife. We spotted 3 moose on the highway going home.


Prairie Mountain, the oxymoron name of a hill, was a truly surprising experience. We found some amazing views, had perfect conditions, and found out that sliding down a steep slope on your butt is extremely fun (we made it up to 14km/h) and well worth the steep upward slog! The trip took us just over 3 hours, but that included dawdling at the top with ever-so-necessary summit meal. I hope to do this summit again.



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