Wednesday, August 26, 2009

We like mountains

One of the great things about Canada is the abundance of large pointy slabs of rock that poke out of the ground. We never saw them in Australia but apparently they are called "mountains" and they are fun to hike up. This weekends trip was to the top of Cirque peak (2993 m).

The slog begins

Hoary Marmot, dont know how they got their name...

Cirque Peak - If you look really closely you can see some people (black specks) on the ridge on the left of the picture.

The view from the top was truly incredible and well worth the effort.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Burstall Pass

People say that there are two seasons in Calgary, July and winter. So far they seem correct as August has been wet and hasnt provided good hiking weather. However, bad weather never stopped us from hiking in NZ or Oz so this weekend we ignored the forecast and went hiking anyway. The trip was Burstall Pass, a very popular and highly rated hike just out of Calgary. While there were periods of rain, fresh snow on the peaks and temperatures just pushing into double digits, the hike was still excellent with scenery that would give most of NZ a run for its money and make Australia look like a B grade amusement park.

The team

The Robertson Glacier

Approaching the pass

The view from the top made the trip worthwhile

Our first Moose sighting!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Niles Meadow and Sherbrooke Lake

To counteract the consumption of excessive amounts of fat, beer and salt at the football game we spent Sunday hiking. At 20 km, the hike was a tad longer than our usual outings but considering the food we had eaten the night before the exercise was needed. While the hike was rated very highly the forest fires in BC created a lot of haze which unfortunately limited the views so the hike didn't live up our lofty expectations.

Sherbrooke Lake

The wildflowers help distract you from the climb ahead

Niles amphitheatre

Niles Meadow just before a storm rolled in

The weather here always keeps you on your toes, especially when you are walking along an exposed ridge in a thunder storm getting pelted with hail.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Saturday night's a great night for football

After putting it off for a few months we figured it was about time to try and understand American Football. This idea was made made even more tempting by a deal that a local pub was running where you could get two tickets, two beers, chicken wings and transport to the game for just $24.95. So on Saturdays we joined ~35 000 other punters to see the Calgary Stampeders play the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. Despite expert advise from my brother, we couldn't figure out what was going on half the time and the other half of the time we couldn't even figure out where the ball was. Thankfully Calgary won and we had another excellent, albeit confusing, Canadian experience.

It wouldn't be Canadian Football without Canadian beer

Canadian cuisine

Friday, August 07, 2009

Stefan and Claire come to visit

Last weekend we had the pleasure of having Stefan and Claire come to visit. First up was a hike to Black Prince Cirque and while we had done the trip before the blooming wild flowers made it just as spectacular the second time around. The following day we joined a couple hundred other punters and floated down the Bow river, not quite grade 5 rapids but still a relaxing way to spend the day. On the last day we had an unseasonable spell of Vancouver (crap) weather so we headed out for a road trip along the Icefields Parkway. All and all a very enjoyable long weekend and we cant wait to visit Stefan and Claire in Vancouver next month.

Chilling on the Bow


Stefan always has to be the centre of attention