Moose Mountain 10 miles 741 metres elevation gain 5 hrs total (3:30 of forward motion) I like to sit!
Follow Hwy 22 west, then continue on Route 66 west past Bragg Creek. Look for the right turn onto Moose Mtn Road just after Paddy's Flat (not signposted). Follow to the parking lot at the end of the road. As you enter the parking area, the trailhead is on your right.
The first half hour was in pouring rain with soggy flappy shorts and my raincoat in my eyes, we passed many soggy people on their way back. A runner sheltering under a tree with a power bar commented it was snowing at the top. Yay summer!
Out of the blue the rain petered out and sun nearly broke through.
As we started up the switchbacks visibility was reduced to about 5 metres. We have no idea where we are, where we're going or if we'll be able to see anything when we get there.
This is the view from the picnic table at the summit. Good news: the wind dried our shorts nicely.
Suddenly there is a gap in the clouds.
There is great enthusiasm from us and the other group sitting at the top, cameras are dropped and recovered frantically before the cloud closes back in.
On the way down it clears even more, this is the view back toward the summit. The red dot is a person. Other dots are visible near the top if you look closely.
Quick drive from Calgary right into mountain scenery
Be prepared for a busy trail (not at all my favourite thing)
Nice mix of forest early on with views gradually opening up then rocky switchbacks to the fire lookout
Parts of Brokeback were filmed here, next time expect awful scene recreations and accompanying pictures
Typically we wouldn't go right into 700+ m elevation for the first trail of the season. I felt it, I wasn't even happy walking the last part (which also has a bloody great uphill). Between our house and the summit I had a total of half a Twix, I have to remember trail running is not hiking.
Damn the mountains are gorgeous.