Climbing the East End of Rundle

This morning, Ryan and I decided to go to the mountains. It has been far too long since I spent time in and around those majestic Rockies, and so we planned a hike. We drove out on Highway 1, and took exit 93 towards the Three Sisters. We originally planned a nice, leisurely hike up the Grassi Lakes trail, but once we arrived at the trail entrance, we decided a new plan was in order.

I recently downloaded an app called AllTrails. This is an app that anyone who likes walking in nature should download. Whether you are an avid mountain climber, or like to take leisurely strolls along the river, this app is for you. We were able to find our location and chose nearby hikes that had excellent views. AllTrails suggested the “East End of Rundle” hike. Sure! Why not! The sign for the trail entrance wasn’t visible, and we spent about 10 minutes wandering back and forth, trying to find the footpath. We finally found it, shared a quick and exuberant high five, and were off!

We quickly lost the trail. We ignored the fact that we were no longer on any sort of path, scrambling up the side of a mountain, and just continued to head up. We finally found what appeared to be a path. It was covered by trees and the sun shone through in just the most magical way. Ryan suggested this was like level 2. Level 1 was there to see if we had what it takes to arrive at level 2. We did! We ran into a few more hikers and upheld the unspoken tradition to greet them and engage in as much small talk as can possibly fit in the time it takes to walk by. We reached the epic views of level 3, stopped for a sandwich break and the “mountain dance” – the dance you do on a mountain – of course!  The mountain dance became a reoccurring event throughout the rest of our hike.

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Level 4 is where I frolicked in a field and sang the title song from The Sound of Music. Then we reached the top! We sat for a long while, looking out at Canmore, feeling humbled by the massive sky above us, and feeling as though we were looking out over the entire world. The health app on my phone told me I climbed 162 flights of stairs. We ate another sandwich, danced a few more steps of the mountain dance,  took a zillion photos, and turned right back around to head down.

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Level 4, level 3, level 2. Then we found this really delightful path. it was shaded by trees, and was so smooth it appeared to have been planned. “Wow! How delightful!” I said to Ryan. He agreed. The path took us right back to the road. We realized that it was the path we lost when we began our hike this morning.

If I learned anything from today’s adventure, it is to a) bring more water, b) film the next time Ryan does the mountain dance, and c) I should have downloaded AllTrails a long time ago. Thanks for the radical hike, Calgary!

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