Southern Alberta one Weekend at a time

Discussion in 'Canada' started by Lycan1, Jun 9, 2013.

  1. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

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    Rather than clog up the "Calgarians The Dual-sport" thread, I am starting a picture thread for my explorations and adventures in South Western Alberta.

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    May Be My favorite shot. The natural light was just about perfect.

    After the debacle that was Photobucket and a hard lesson learned I begin again, so;

    "Are You seated Comfortably?, Good, Then I'll Begin!"

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    Out by Spray Lakes.
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    A trip with the man that enticed me off the pavement.
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    Mountain Park, AB

    Loving You Sunday Morning

    The first rays of dawn lighten the blinds and I am already awake. Carefully I slip from beneath the warm sheets and head for a shower. I have always been an early riser and Sunday mornings are no exception. This early I forego the ritual coffee and opt for a quick glass of juice. Already in my armor, there will be time later for such frivolities.

    While the rest of the household sleeps, I slip out the backdoor and down to the garage. My friend waits in the dark for me to arrive. The crisp morning air greets me as I open the garage door and push my steed into the daylight. The door rolls down on its tracks. I push my mount down to the end of the lane as not to disturb the slumbering neighbours. “I fire up the willing engine, responding with a roar” and do my best to idle out of the street. As the engine comes up to temperature I gradually pick up the pace. Now free of the cluster of houses I call home. Reaching the main highway I begin my warm-up on the tight corners of the cloverleaves and exit ramps of two near-by interchanges. Satisfied that both the bike and myself are now ready for the day I head west toward the foothills of the Canadian Rockies. Pulling away from the last traffic light that I will see for some time I crack the throttle and shatter the still morning air. It’s a good sound, even muffled by my helmet and I can’t help but smile.

    The colours of the landscape seem more vibrant as the sky slowly lightens and I head away from the City. The shadows still long in front of me and the air cool. The vista changes from Wheat fields to forested hillsides all the while with the distant snow capped peaks acting as backdrop. The ribbon of pavement begins to undulate and twist and the mountains disappear from view on and off. The forest closes in on the road and my senses sharpen on alert for wildlife. Cresting a large hill overlooking the valley below I see my intended turnoff. I turn south at the junction on the valley floor and head south.

    The narrow highway runs straight south for a short way before snaking on its roller coaster ride through the trees and along side marshes the lay along it’s path. A keen eye is needed, as there is much wildlife in these hills. Moose frequent the lush marshes and deer, bears and cougars are commonplace. The wail from the tailpipe keep most at bay and the few that I spot are headed away from the din. I set a brisk pace and have yet to see another vehicle in my travels. For a time I have the world to myself and it’s glorious. Watching the surface for debris as I pass the few connecting roads I take the corners with aggression and increasing confidence nearly touching the pegs. As I near the first signs of civilization my pace slows not wanting to attract undue attention. The next junction looms and I decide to continue south. The morning light has gathered intensity and a few vehicles have begun to share the road. I adjust my pace accordingly and break out of the trees into farmland once more. The distant Mountain peaks rising above the hills once again to my right. A few horses decide to race me as I pass. The cows further along not impressed enough to even raise their heads. Red tailed hawks circle above waiting for breakfast to poke their heads up in the fields below.

    A small town nears and my thoughts turn to Breakfast at a favorite haunt. I troll thru town well aware of the local constabulary’s presence. My morning coffee awaits and for today my solitude done. I will have to share the world now that the remaining denizens have stirred.

    Lee Kroeker
    #1
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  2. MCMXCIVRS

    MCMXCIVRS Long timer

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    Damn I hate how much time you find to go riding. I gotta get less crap on my schedule. Nice trip from the photos, we'll be needing the GPS tracks too. :clap
    #2
  3. Lav1200

    Lav1200 Pig Pen

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    Very nice Lee - your photos show off southern Alberta really well. I'd love to get out on a ride with you someday this summer (last time being 2 or 3 yrs back at Cypress...?).
    #3
  4. PabloX

    PabloX n00b

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    Hey Lee,
    Well, I see you wasted no time getting this posted. It was a great outing and I am glad I went, but so bagged. I don't know if it was the long runs in the saddle, the single malt at the site or the short night...probably all factor in...but it's a 'good tired'! Maybe I need to do some conditioning before the CDT run!?
    Looking forward to more outings and adventures in Southern Alberta and beyond!
    'loX
    :ricky
    #4
  5. flossandfly

    flossandfly Been here awhile

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    Nice photos of nice scenery.
    #5
  6. Chad M

    Chad M A full head of air.

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    I remember as a kid seeing those weird fibreglass animal heads on the tops of garbage cans. I'll bet its been 30 years since I saw the last one.
    #6
  7. edwin

    edwin Been here awhile

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    chad m...
    those would be interesting so see again (as in photos)...does anyone have any??
    #7
  8. wos

    wos Long timer

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    That weird mouse head was supposed to be a bear garbage can lid, used to see them all over the place, usually painted to be a polar bear but in the parks they were grizzly brown.

    keep it coming. grew up in Southern Alberta and miss the mountains and foothills.
    #8
  9. Fatallybitten

    Fatallybitten Slow and getting slower

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    Lee, I keep forgetting about that corner of SW AB. Thanks for reminding me that I need to spend some time down there. Great photos as usual. And nothing finishes the day off like a wee dram in front of the fire. Cheers, David
    #9
  10. Fatallybitten

    Fatallybitten Slow and getting slower

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    Lee, PM sent. David
    #10
  11. MCMXCIVRS

    MCMXCIVRS Long timer

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    I found your track thread and downloaded most of them. Thanks

    I did a nice ride up through Water Valley out to the trunk road and up Hunter Valley road. A bit of exploring some side roads from there then home through Waiprous.

    Need to go back up there with helpers and try some of the trails, lots to choose from.
    #11
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  12. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

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    West of Turner Valley.
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    Gorge Creek Road



    Little over 4 minutes of a 15 minute run.

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    Come for a Ride in my world

    Inspiration comes in many different forms, a picture, a smell, a touch, sound or prose, which inspires emotions or memories. Inspiration is an intensely personal thing that is hard to quantify. My own experience is that it comes from many directions and sometimes from unusual avenues. I am a visual creature deriving much of my own pleasure from the things that my eyes behold. Whether it is the beauty of nature through my camera’s lens or the people around me, visual stimuli inspires me. When you add a variety of stimuli in concert, the experience becomes harder to describe. That is what makes riding a motorcycle such an addictive and pleasurable past time. While riding, all of your senses are working in concert, providing your brain with inspirational overload.

    It is said a picture is worth a thousand words, but sometimes a thousand words can show you so much more. Those same thousand words can show different things to different people much like a twist of a child’s kaleidoscope changes the view through its lens. What an author attempts to convey can magically transform for different readers. So to is it with our other senses as well, such as smell. The aroma after a fall rain will evoke different feelings for nearly every person that experiences it. As much as I enjoy the smell of the damp leaves and bark of a freshly dampened forest, for me it means an ending to my favorite season. The smell brings a sense of regret and melancholy in the knowledge of what lies ahead. The smell of cinnamon and nutmeg on the other hand inspires thoughts of fall colors, the warmth of a fire, and of time spent with family.

    Music has long been used to inspire and I can think of many examples in everyday life. Advertisers have been using songs from their target audience’s youth to evoke good feelings and memories that they hope will be associated with the product that they are selling. Movie makers use music to set a tone and take the audiences feelings on the emotional ride that they have mapped out. My favorite songs are the ones that tell a story and paint a picture for my imagination.

    “Wind in my hair, shifting and drifting, mechanical music, adrenalin surge.Well-weathered leather, hot metal and oil, the scented country air. Sunlight on chrome, the blur of the landscape, every nerve aware. Suddenly ahead of me, across the mountain side a gleaming alloy air car shoots towards me 2 lanes wide. I spin around with shrieking tires and run the deadly race. Go screaming through the valley as another joins the chase.” - Excerpt from Red Barchetta by Rush

    The lyrics from the song above have always taken me along into a world that my mind has created from the authors words. It is enhanced by the music that accompanies those words. I have never seen a video for the song other than concert performance footage and wonder how close my vision would come to the videographers. Even though it envisions a race in an imaginary future world it always inspires thoughts of me riding my motorcycle.

    I have read many books and the ones that I remember are the ones that took me down the rabbit hole into the author’s world on the back of the printing on the page. The author’s world may have looked different to him (as he painted it in words) than how my mind showed it to me. That is really the wonder of writing and the heart of inspiration, at least to me. When I write short stories about riding I try to take the reader along for the ride and to inspire emotions in that reader. With both pictures and words together I try to take the reader along, if only for a few moments, for a ride in the world as I experienced it. When my own inspiration manages to occasionally make it though my fingertips to the keyboard and into the electronic universe successfully it is rewarding. I envy those who make it look easy.

    You feel and hear the growl of the engine and roar of the exhaust as the wind caresses you through your tight leather suit as the chill morning air tries in vain to find its way to your skin. You can feel warmth radiating up from the mechanical symphony beneath you, your right hand conducting the orchestra of metal. You sense a gentle hum in your palms as you grip the bar, deftly guiding the machine into the next curve. The pavement blurs as the ribbon of rock and paint rushes toward you and is gone. The trees and grasses loose focus, their colors melding together as they frame your path and flash by at the edges of your vision. You feel a smile creasing your face, bracketed tightly by your helmet. All these sensations in harmony as you do, as you have many times before, Ride.

    Lee Kroeker
    #12
  13. gsstampeder

    gsstampeder Long timer

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    Thanks for posting...even tho it hurts seeing all the great terrain I left behind without exploring! God I miss Calgary. Although there is some incredible riding here in Funtario, it's just somehow not the same without the mountain scenery.
    #13
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  14. Fatallybitten

    Fatallybitten Slow and getting slower

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    Lee, can you post a photo of your video camera mount? Thanks, David
    #14
  15. Fatallybitten

    Fatallybitten Slow and getting slower

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    I am looking for mounting options. I had tried mounting the camera on the left side pannier but it was too shaky. I will have a look on-line at the GoPro mounts. Cheers, David
    #15
  16. flossandfly

    flossandfly Been here awhile

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    The pan flute music at the end of your videos always makes me smile.
    #16
  17. Fatallybitten

    Fatallybitten Slow and getting slower

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    Lee, I will have a look at your suggestions. It would be great to have something rigged up before I head north in July. Cheers, David
    #17
  18. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

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    I can see clearly now the rain is gone.
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    I can see all obstacles in my way.

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    Gone are the dark clouds... (well not quite)
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    Gonna' be a bright, bright, sunshiny' day.

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    And now something a little different (not completely different though).

    ""
    #18
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  19. Hektoglider

    Hektoglider One with Life

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    We rode some of the trunk road last summer. Great thread, keep up the good work & info....
    #19
  20. RED CAT

    RED CAT Bumpy Backroader

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    Good photography work. You make Alberta look good!
    #20