“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.”
L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables
October is my favourite month; a bittersweet interlude between summer and winter. Here in Alberta, it arrives amidst a blaze of colour, but by the end of the month, there will likely be snow on the ground. Each golden day is a treasure.
The tiny hamlet of Gwynne, located midway between Camrose and Wetaskiwin, is nestled in a valley that is absolutely gorgeous in the fall. We often take that route on our way to Edmonton, but until today we’d never stopped to explore the area. I recently learned of two hiking trails in the valley, however, and they were today’s destination.
The first, officially called the CPR Canyon Hiking Trail, is a relatively easy 4 km walk along a creek. The name seems apt as the railway follows the creek on the opposite bank and three trains rumbled by while we were hiking. It’s known locally, however, as Chickadee Trail and we soon found out why!
The inquisitive little critters were landing on my outstretched hand before we even took any food out of the pack on Richard’s back. Soon we were sharing lunch!
There were six geocaches hidden along the trail which added to our fun.
The second trail circled through Pipestone Creek Conservation Lands where we searched out three more geocaches and enjoyed some spectacular views including an oxbow lake.
There are clearly many more trails criss-crossing the conservation area and we found a lovely little campground close by, so I suspect that we’ll be spending more time there in the future.
I have no idea how far we walked today, but my knees are telling the tale this evening and it’s time to go soak in a hot bath!
Hopefully October holds many more days like this one!