Month: June 2011

Heart Creek Mountain – Heart Creek Trail

About 40 minutes or so from Calgary, this is not a long or hard hike at all.  It is pretty level (and short) but it is a really beautiful walk.  The parking lot is at the junction of Lac des Arc exit off Highway #1.  On the south side of the highway.  You can park about a kilometer further east off the shoulder of the highway but at the parking lot are bathrooms and it is a nice walk the 800 meters to where the trail makes a turn to the south up the creek.  There is a for real hike that goes around Heart Mountain but that is for a different day. 

The walk-hike takes you over several bridges and on the way you are likely to see quite a number of rock climbers. More on the weekends.  It is open enough that you can see up the cliffs and rocks and mountains as you are walking.  It is not that far to the falls at the top end – a nice space for a picnic or to relax for a while.  You can climb up onto a rock there (you’ll see) to get a better look at the falls. 

On the other side of the river in this beautiful grotto is a steep trail leading to the top.  I put a couple of 200 pound rocks in the river to make crossing a little easier and as I wanted a little more of a challenge climbed to the top of that trail.  There are a lot of loose rocks at the bottom section.  And it is steep enough that any rain at all would make it all but impossible to go the rest of the way as it would be too steep and muddy.  One does have to think about getting back down.  I have no idea how really to estimate heights but I figure it was a 200-300 foot climb.  I was not sure at first if the trail would go anywhere or if it would be one of those that petered out or just kept going and going on forever.  But it did get me to the top and it was, except for the trees, quite the view. 

Numerous paths at the top that would take you in almost any direction that I deigned not to take. 

We hung around for a while in the grotto – ate our lunch – it being a weekday was not terribly busy. 

This is a great walk if you have smaller kids or are looking for an easy or short hike with some very nice scenery.

The ‘clearing’ at the end of the trail

Heart Mountain

Posted by faffyrd007 in alberta, calgary, heart creek mountain, heart creek trail, hiking, 0 comments

Helping People

Several years ago I was traveling by car, on my own, from Los Angeles to Florida.  In the middle of nowhere Texas – really, I was a lot of miles from anywhere, my car broke down.  I did not know it then but my alternator had died and I just cruised to the side of the road in the middle of the desert.  Texas is a pretty friendly state and a couple of people stopped to try and help but to no avail. Then a trucker had gone by me a couple of hundred yards and managed to back up his semi so that he could help me.  And he did manage to get my car started.  I thanked him profusely and we were on our way.

I shut my lights off so it would not die again and got things repaired and replaced at the next town.

This next chapter brings me to the point of my story.  I was cruising along the next and beautiful sunny day and lo and behold what do I see in the middle of the afternoon but a elderly woman on the side of the road with a flat tire.  I had been so grateful to the trucker that helped me and he would not take anything from me so here was my opportunity to ‘repay’.  I pulled over.  She could hardly believe it as dozens of cars were passing and no one had stopped.  I was more than happy to help her change the tire.  I’m quite sure she would not have managed the change on her own.  I was almost done and a state trooper stopped and offered to take over.  No way!  He was nice but I wanted to finish what I had started.  He helped us from getting run over.

The lady that I helped was extremely grateful and offered to pay me.  I refused and told her that I had a better way to exchange.  I asked her to find someone to help in the next week or two and kind of pass it on; like that really depressing movie: “Pay it Forward”. 

She was thrilled with the idea and said, ‘I will, I will, I promise.”  She beamed at the idea and I am very sure that she did.

I am very certain the the most wonderful sensation in the world results from helping others.  Not getting something for it but just helping.  If you are not sure that you believe me, please go out and help someone.  I don’t care if it is something like mowing someone’s lawn that is away on vacation or anything that is some help in any degree.  And if the person offers to give something in return tell them what you ask of them is to help someone else with something. 

Next time you are feeling down, depressed or whatever, look a way to help others and do so and if you don’t feel better then do it again and keep doing it until you do feel better.  You will – I guarantee it.  And, seriously, don’t accept payment other than that person helping someone else. 

Best sensation in the world by far!!

Oh, BTW, you don’t have to wait until you are depressed to or down to help.  And it is OK to be greedy about it.  You can help all the people and groups that you want.  That’s pretty much the purpose of life: To help.

Posted by Martin Jones in help others, helping people, helping someone, 0 comments

Hiking Lake Minnewanka “Water of the Spirits”

We drove from Calgary to Banff yesterday to hiking at Lake Minnewanka. The drive is less than 90 minutes if you are doing around the speed limit and depeding where in Calgary you are. We went in the middle of the day so only went for a few hours. The park is just minutes from Banff so if you want to go there as well for lunch before or dinner afterwards it is very close. If you are going to spend some money on a meal I suggest go there or bring food. There is a canteen there but it very expensive for what you get. I should have expected that when I approached it and there were no prices listed anywhere. It cost us over $15.00 for a hot dog and a small veggie burrito and a coffee. Hrmff!

Lake Minnewanka

All the trail guides that I read said there was no elevation increase – maybe I was reading the wrong ones but if you walk the trail on the north side of the lake there is an elevation increase of at least 300-400 feet. It is pretty easy walking though. One section of the woods was pretty muddy – there has been a lot of rain this year.

After the park at the bottom, once you get onto the trail you are going to be in the woods for at least half an hour depending on how fast you walk. It is not closed in like some hikes so is pleasant.

Lake Minnewanka

You can go as long or short as you want on this trail. Start early in the day and you can go the length of the lake. That will have to be a different day for us. We just walked out about an hour and a half or so – we may have gotten close to the entrance to the Aylmer Pass entrance but that was closed anyway.

I took a lot of photographs. I like working with black and white but many of these I could not choose between color and black and white – both ways communicated the beauty well. I took a lot more that I have put here but I hope to show you a sampling of the beauty of the hike. Hopefully, I have not left out some of the better ones.

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Lake Minnewanka

Mountain Sheep

Mountain Sheep

These fellows were on the road foraging with many others when drove around to Two Jacks and Johnson Lake.  Very pretty drive.  And there is a walk around Johnson Lake that we did not do but if you want more of a pretty walk than a ‘hike’ looks like a nice one.

Posted by faffyrd007 in alberta, banff, calgary, hiking, lake minnewanka, 0 comments

Ranch country near Benchland, Alberta

We went for a drive around the loop from Highway 40 up 734/Forestry Trunk Rd – through Benchlands and Waiporous.  Very pretty drive – it was raining a lot of the day so we staying in the car mostly and the mosquitoes were bad until the wind came up.  We went south on Richard Road expecting to be able to hook back into Highway 40 but about half way down came to what looked like the end of the road.  Turned into a dirt/mud road.  So we went back the way we came.  Kinda glad we did as we got some really nice pictures.  But if anyone knows this are and can tell me if the road goes all the way through…

Posted by faffyrd007 in alberta horse, benchlands, calgary, gwen van kleef, waiporous, 0 comments

Two Drills to increase your touch typing speed

Here are a couple of drills if you want to learn to touch type faster:



Do these 10 minutes a day for a couple of weeks and you will notice a huge difference.

Posted by Martin Jones, 0 comments

Sean Liv – Calgary Alberta

I met Sean the other day.  She had a spot at the Kingsland Farmer’s Market(just south of Glenmore Trail on MacLeod Trail).  Promoting her book ‘The Ticket’. 

What a gem!  I have not read her book yet(but it is on my list) or been to one of her talks but I absolutely enjoyed speaking to her. 

Check out her website:

Posted by faffyrd007 in alberta, calgary, motivational speaker, sean liv, seanlive, 0 comments