Southern Alberta one Weekend at a time

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

  1. Cal

    Cal Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,775
    Location:
    Calgary
    Doe not matter how its done the sharpness and clarity is fantastic
    pictor1 and Lycan1 like this.
  2. Fatallybitten

    Fatallybitten Slow and getting slower Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,082
    Location:
    Calgary, Alberta
    I am not as proficient, either with the camera or with Lightroom, as Lycan1 or pictor1. Nevertheless, here are a few photos from the weekend. For anyone who hasn't had the pleasure, I highly recommend finding and trying out this campsite.

    This is the view looking up at the campsite from the riverbed
    Camp from Riverbed.jpg

    The view up river
    Riverbed from Camp.jpg

    The riverbed
    Riverbed.jpg

    The view from pictor1's tent
    Campsite1.jpg

    Looking forward to pizza and Scotch!
    Campsite2.jpg

    Until the next one.
    MGV8, G-Mac, Cal and 5 others like this.
  3. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,139
    Location:
    Calgary
    May 24th 2020

    After riding to work in cold wind and rain all last week the clear skies, sunshine and warmth were a welcome treat. I met a riding companion at a Tim's and was able to go inside to grab a snack and a coffee (it felt so novel). I had the place to myself, then went back out to sit in the morning sunshine. It has been so long since I had Tim's coffee that I came to the realization that the stuff really is (at best) mediocre. I have been making my own for months now and always fresh grind Kicking Horse dark blends. By comparison the Tim's stuff is bland, watery and tasteless. Second cup and Good Earth make a decent cup and even McDonalds is better these days.

    Anyway, we were in Pictor's neighborhood so he played guide getting out of the area and over to Springbank road. We dodged north under the #1 and across 22 west through the Valley and eventually back under highway 1 onto #68 south.

    _MG_1438.jpg
    Twp. 252

    We stopped a couple of times on mostly empty back roads to snap pictures and carry on. We briefly played in the woods before exploring Powderface trail. We were early so had little traffic until we hit pavement again.

    _MG_1441.jpg

    _MG_1443.jpg
    Pictor on his steed.

    _MG_1448-2.jpg
    Powderface trail had its muddy spots but unless you were on pure street tires and riding like a hooligan you would get through just fine.

    We swung through Bragg Creek to support a couple of local businesses (gas station and the Sugar Shake Bakery) before briefly meeting another couple of comrades on dual sports at the Maclean Creek Store lot. They had mud on their minds (and bikes) and after seeing the goop between the trees that needed traversing to get to the road behind the locked gate my riding partner said "F*@! that"! I would have let them know but they had disappeared, forgetting that neither of us do dirt bike evenings out at MacLean and are not as familiar with the trails as they are. It was mayhem out there with full parking lots, guys unloading truck loads of Quads, bikes and huge-tire Jeeps and old-school pick up trucks. One dirt rider just emerged from a trail covered in runny mud from the neck down as we circled the staging area.

    We, instead of joining the chaos, carried on south along the main road to the south staging area before Fisher. Another rider came along and informed us that there were gates up at Fisher so after a short play on the hill climbs we retreated and headed home, parting ways at Bragg Creek.

    G-Mac, cal08, pictor1 and 1 other person like this.
  4. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,139
    Location:
    Calgary
    May 24th 2020

    I took the long way home and stopped to enjoy the sights on Coalmine road.

    _MG_1449.jpg
    Just after completing Powderface trail.

    The traffic was heavy heading west on 66 and the cars at Elbow and Forget Me Not Pond were insane. Busier than I have ever seen it.

    _MG_1459.jpg
    Coalmine road.

    The Aspens greening up are beautiful at this time of year. The streams all running swiftly and high.

    _MG_1463.jpg
    Twp. 220

    Just before stopping for this picture, I had stopped to talk to the proud new owner of his shiny new Yamaha T-7. He and his girlfriend were stopped on a back road, taking pictures of the brand new ride (the first i have seen in the wild). It was the Blue and black and had just enough dust on it to have made it from 112th to where i met them on Twp 220. The stock tires look not bad and should be capable on any of the dirt that get taken on, and maybe a bit quieter on pavement than many.

    Hopefully Pictor will post up his always great takes on our rides.
    drrod1, cal08, Fatallybitten and 3 others like this.
  5. sirvelo

    sirvelo Miles to go before I sleep Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2019
    Oddometer:
    84
    Location:
    Calgary
    It was a great day for a ride after all that cold and rain this week. My wife on her VFR1200 and me on the ATAS. We ended up at the end of the paved portion of 66 before it turns into the unpaved portion and Powderface Trail. We don’t have the nerve to take her street bike with street tires down that road to 68. We were there around 12:30 and the parking lots were packed as you mentioned. We just parked the bikes on some yellow lined space next to the river. Walked through the trees and there sat a picnic table beside the river totally alone in the sun and ate the lunches we packed. We wondered where all the people in those cars went. Once finished came back and five more bikes were parked around us so the place was still filling up at 1 pm. We took Plummers road back before heading back to Calgary. Anyway thanks for your ride report at least I got to do your ride vicariously.
    cal08, pictor1 and Lycan1 like this.
  6. pictor1

    pictor1 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2016
    Oddometer:
    83
    Location:
    Calgary
    yep another good ride with Lycan1. An early start, 8AM but nice to be out before the crowds.

    May24 20-2701.jpg
    May24 20-2718.jpg
    May24 20-2727.jpg
    May24 20-2738.jpg
    drrod1, Lycan1, cal08 and 2 others like this.
  7. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,139
    Location:
    Calgary
    May 29-30

    "It's finally Friday
    I'm out of control
    Forget the workin' blues

    And let the good times roll." - George Jones, Finally Friday


    I took the Camper to work Friday morning with a quick get away in mind when the closing bell tolled. The forecast, the best this season yet. Mr. Google told me: an hour and 45 minutes to the river bed at the end of Trans Alta from Rocky View (with no traffic). I should be setting up camp by 6:15 and cooking Dinner on a wood fire by 7:00. Despite the traffic in Cochrane and the parade up from 1A through Waiprous I was just about on schedule at the gate.
    I made up any lost time by making the 1090's suspension work along Trans Alta, passing everything in sight. 22 minutes from gate to the River bed and I was back on plan. A hard left at the bottom of the hill and I was winding my way between the campers already crowding every available space. I came up on a red Dodge truck with a familiar bike in the bed slowly creeping between the trees on the rutted trail. Not long after we spotted Pictor directing us to the real estate he had staked out by the river side.

    _MG_1470-2.jpg

    Not long after the familiar Singer sewing machine sound of the WR got louder an Ian appeared. The Fire crew had already got the pit going and after setting up camp we enjoyed a manly meal of wood-smoked meat and hot-coal baked potatoes. Cheap whisky and beer washed it all down in a open air restaurant with a million dollar view.

    _MG_1472.jpg

    The clouds rolled past just to remind us to appreciate the currently fine weather. Later, as darkness fell, the waning moon lit up the sky before the stars began winking on in the clearing night sky.

    _MG_1478.jpg

    Morning arrived to a clear blue sky and quickly rising temperatures. A couple of the crew had prior engagements that required a fast bug-out.

    After fresh ground and french pressed coffee, cinnamon buns and oatmeal breakfast by the newly rekindled fire, I washed up in the frigid river. I always enjoy clean hair, what is still there, so I washed my hair / scalp in the bone-head chilling water. Once the feeling came back to my anesthetized scalp I felt ready for the day.

    Pictor1 and I enjoyed a couple more hours of relative peace and made sure the fire pit was soaked and stirred and OUT before we rolled.

    We stopped at the gate at the pavement to assist a fellow adventurer whose machine was not starting. After a failed push starting, the Big KTM acted as tow machine and got the Honda on its way. I could not reconcile the idea of a guy coming all the way out from the city, unloading his bike, gearing up and then not being able to go out and enjoy a ride on a beautiful day.

    A quick stop on Richards road and homeward we went.

    _MG_1481.jpg

    Camping "Cole notes" version. You get the basic idea, but over too soon.

    "Time to split out my back door
    Sunrise dancing on my wall
    Heading down off beaten tracks
    Try to get that feeling back.

    Funny when we move ahead
    Never worry what we leave behind
    I could always find some peace
    In the back of beyond." - Split Enz - Take a Walk


    sirvelo, devildogg, pictor1 and 3 others like this.
  8. pictor1

    pictor1 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2016
    Oddometer:
    83
    Location:
    Calgary
    out on TransAlta road Friday. It is an absolute gong show out in the woods these days, unimaginable numbers of people but good to get out never the less.

    May30 20-2759.jpg

    May30 20-2768.jpg

    May30 20-2769.jpg

    May30 20-2835.jpg
  9. pictor1

    pictor1 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2016
    Oddometer:
    83
    Location:
    Calgary
    and what KTM owner can resist the opportunity to tow start a Honda.......

    May30 20-2844.jpg

    May30 20-2852.jpg

    May30 20-2865.jpg

    May30 20-2882.jpg
    sirvelo, cal08, Fatallybitten and 2 others like this.
  10. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,139
    Location:
    Calgary
    May 30

    This KTM owner, that's who.

    May30 20-2866.jpg
    Courtesy of Pictor.

    _MG_1474.jpg
    Until next weekend.
  11. dammitdave

    dammitdave Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,664
    Location:
    Port Townsend, WA
    I live in a beautiful place with snow capped mountains in view but you fellas' have raised the bar for sharing with your pics of western Alberta. Thank you!
    drrod1, cal08, pictor1 and 2 others like this.
  12. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,139
    Location:
    Calgary
    "Out on TransAlta road Friday. It is an absolute gong show out in the woods these days, unimaginable numbers of people but good to get out never the less." - Pictor

    We saw vehicles that were very out of place; high end BMWs ( losing resale value very quickly) huge motorhomes ( don't buy used in Alberta) and clusters of cars & trucks numbering in the dozens ( no safe distancing there) camping together. Massive amounts anywhere they could get their vehicles to.
    Even camping among the ugly leftovers of clear cuts beside sections of the road. What bothered me was the sound of chainsaws and the evidence where we were camped of previous chainsaw carnage. Healthy trees big and small that won't burn worth a crap. Bring your own damn firewood that's been dried you cheap pricks or at least use deadfall.

    City people that don't have a clue and treat the outdoors like a one use Slurpee cup, to be used and scrapped and to be someone else's problem to clean up. The first to complain when enforcement measures come into play because of people like them.
  13. Cal

    Cal Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,775
    Location:
    Calgary
    Lee, I as a born Calgarian and wild camper my whole life I know what you are saying. We are now a city of 1.2 million and finding camp spots is not like it used to be! This is why I now travel further north for my camping and fishing, this year with the NT and Yukon border restrictions I will probably end up in the High Level / Peace Country. Being retired allows me to do this for a few weeks at a time, hang in there and you will be doing the same soon.
    pictor1 and Lycan1 like this.
  14. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,139
    Location:
    Calgary
    I wondered why the usual gun fire was at a minimum this weekend ( the one bright spot) but maybe with Cabela's and the like closed the gun people have run low on amunition? I only saw one jet leaving a contrail in the sky as well.

    As to retirement, sadly it will take a lottery win. I'm on the work until I drop plan. Maybe when I'm too old to ride I'll get a job with fish & feathers. I'd be popular!
    pictor1 and Cal like this.
  15. drrod1

    drrod1 Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2013
    Oddometer:
    1,556
    Location:
    Calgary
    Lee,
    Regarding your comment about a KTM towing the Honda, I thought this might even things out a bit.....:lol3

    https://advrider.com/f/threads/how-to-tow-a-ktm-990-1-235-km-across-australia.881869/

    As for your observations about the camping - rode the Indian Graves - FTR loop yesterday. I was taken aback by the number of campers (tents and RV's) along 532. Virtually anyplace flat enough to accommodate something was occupied. Also, there were about 50-80 vehicles parked at the Highwood junction. Every pullout along 541 by the river was full as well as along the FTR. I have lived in southern Alberta all my life and I have never seen anything like this. Sadly, the blatant disregard for nature is not new. I witnessed much of it growing up. Townspeople would come out into the hills, and just help themselves to private property; even to the point of cutting fences to access it, chopping down trees, driving across hay meadows, etc. So it has always been there. Sadly, there is just much more of it now. I wonder if the back country gong show will die down a bit once things return to whatever the new normal is going to be.
    pictor1, Cal, cal08 and 1 other person like this.
  16. spuh

    spuh Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2012
    Oddometer:
    744
    Let's not forget Waiparous on Victoria Day weekends back in the day.

    Nature had a lot more time and space to recover in the days before we packed in as many more yahoos that the boom monies allowed.
    pictor1, Lycan1 and drrod1 like this.
  17. MCMXCIVRS

    MCMXCIVRS Long timer

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,631
    Location:
    Calgary, Alberta, Canada
    I'm recently retired as well and am trying to figure out where I can go that the hordes are not descendent upon. I have a couple spots I'm looking at for later this month. Planning to do mid week times hoping that some of the horde will be back at work as well. Weekends are insane right now out there as everyone is using the backcountry as a replacement for all the usual sports and activities they had to occupy them and their kids on weekends.

    I am glad to see the campfire restrictions have eased as that is a really nice part of camping. Sitting by the fire with a bit of good scotch is a great end to a day of riding and fishing.
  18. xscoobysnack

    xscoobysnack Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2006
    Oddometer:
    383
    Location:
    Calgary, Alberta
    I was amazed by the throngs of people parked off various highways and the regular tracks on Saturday. Most of what I saw were people trying to go hiking and generally appeared to be behaving themselves. Locking off the parking areas has accomplished nothing but create traffic snarls and what could be quite dangerous situations. It certainly hasn't deterred people from wandering off into the bush. I hope they open the gates soon as the effort has been futile.
    Cal and Lycan1 like this.
  19. Cal

    Cal Long timer

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,775
    Location:
    Calgary
    The amount of cars parked at Barrier lake today was insane!! Never seen anything like it! Both sides of the road for at least a Km
  20. Lycan1

    Lycan1 Grizzly herder

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    2,139
    Location:
    Calgary
    Strange times we live in. We ADVrs may have a tiny advantage in getting out away from the the rabid throngs that have been caged for so long. Places few know about and fewer can easily get to.
    MAXVERT and Cal like this.