Autumn Hike in Ministik

Eleven people came out to hike the trail in the Ministik Bird Sanctuary to the Old Fire Tower. This was the second time we hiked here this year. The previous time was in the summer in the rain.

The trail starts out on the road to the University of Alberta’s research station. Our first stop was at the lookout point at Williams Lake.

Williams Lake in the morning

The sign that points the turn-off to the Waskahegan Trail is prominent. The well-marked path takes you along a few hay fields and through forests up to the old fire tower and beyond.

At this time of year, the erratics stand out. These are large stones that were carried from the Rockies and left here by the glacier many thousands of years ago.

At this time of year, the erratics stand out. These are large stones that were carried from the Rockies and left here by the glacier many thousands of years ago.

Thanks to Lee for leading the hike and to Trail Maintenance for clearing and signing the trail. You can find more photos on Flickr.

North Saunders Lake Fall Colours

Ten people came out to hike Saunders Lake starting from the north end. The air was pleasantly cool and the sky was rather dark at the beginning. However, by mid-day it was warm and the sky was blue with white splashes of wispy clouds.

The fall colours were at their peak. The meadows and trees here are normally very green all through the summer, so it was a surprise and a delight to see the intensity and range of reds, oranges, and yellows.

Wildlife sightings included a mule deer, a green frog, and flocks and flocks of ducks, geese, and coots, probably passing through on their way south

Thanks to Stella for scouting and leading the hike and to trail maintenance for their work in clearing the trail. You can find more photos on Flickr.

Members Barbecue at Miquelon Park

Our annual members barbecue was held at Miquelon Provincial Park. After an absence of two years because of the COVID pandemic, it was great to see other again and chat, even from a safe distance. Twenty-five people came out, which is a good turn-out for these times.

Upon arriving, Irene led us on a hike on the Holdsworth Trail, a quiet, little-known trail on land that was donated to the park by the Holdsworth family.

Holdsworth monument

Normally we would have been keeping an eye out for garter snakes and recording the numbers, but on this day we were too busy catching up with each other to notice any.

When we returned, there was a campfire blazing to keep us warm while we waited for lunch.

A few of us headed to the lake, where we saw a pair of very tame pelicans.

We knew these pelicans would tolerate us getting quite close, as there were several people playing loud games next to us on the sandy beach.

Pelicans

After lunch and a few desserts, we continued chatting and catching up. All in all, it was a beautiful, perfect day.

Thanks to Anita for organizing the event and preparing the food and to the Allens for providing the barbecue. Thanks to Irene for leading the hike and to Scott and his assistants for the fire. You can see all the photos on Flickr.