Memorable hiking experiences in Western Canada and the United States.
To say the Upper and Lower Antelope Slot Canyons are hikes, is a stretch. They are short guided excursions, but the experience is outstanding. Try to book times when the sun is shining into the canyons for maximum benefit and greater photographic potential. These slot canyons are near Page, Arizona, USA.
The photography is challenging with long exposure times. A unipod combined with nerves of steel would be a good idea. In the Upper Antelope Slot Canyon, photographs must be taken in turn, very quickly. There may be no time to make shutter and aperture adjustments. Compose and shoot. The excursions will be forever memorable.
The hike through the Upper Antelope Slot Canyon is a flat walk through an incredibly beautiful, spiritual place. In contrast, the excursion through the Lower Antelope Slot Canyon is a more physical endeavor requiring a climb down on steep, narrow stairs. Terrain in the canyon bottom is uneven. If there has been rain in the past near term, it would be wise to be prepared for mud and some standing water on the canyon floor.
The formations created by fast, furious water over thousands of years are mesmerizing. Sound and silence are pure. The Lower Antelope Slot Canyon is likely to be substantially less crowded, informal and considerably more relaxed with plenty of time to capture excellent photographs.
Rat's Nest Cave at the base of Grotto Mountain near Canmore, Alberta, Canada is an aggressive and forever memorable experience for participants in relatively good physical condition. For most there will be host of new experiences and additional skill sets gained may lead hikers to other adventuresome pursuits including scrambling, spelunking and rock climbing. Advance booking is important. This fundamental tour may lead to other more aggressive guided adventures at Gargantuan Caves in the Crowsnest Pass or Nakimu Caves in Glacier National Park, British Columbia, Canada. These are physical and unique opportunities.
Access to Nakimu Caves at Rogers Pass in Glacier National Park may or may not be available. Check first.
Note: Check at the Frank Slide Visitor Centre to see if the hike is available.
The Pod is an excellent and unique hike through the fascinating features of historic coal strip mining operations. The hike may be fenced in so it is important to check at the Frank Slide Interpretive Centre or the local Parks Visitor Centre for access and availability. If The Pod is not accessible there are many other alternatives including Turtle Mountain and the Airplane Crash Site. Take nothing but pictures. Leave nothing but footprints.
5. Mount Sir Donald - Rogers Pass - Glacier National Park - Hiking B.C.
Mount Sir Donald looms over the Vaux Glacier in Glacier National Park, British Columbia, Canada. The aggressive climb begins near the A. O. Wheeler Hut at parking for Illecillewaet Campground. Quality hiking footwear is advisable for the steep rustic trail to the toe of the Vaux Glacier and/or the base of the classic, mountain climb.
The Highline Trail from the Logan Pass Visitor Centre begins on the north side of Going-To-The-Sun Road in Glacier National Park, Montana, USA. This outstanding hike, also referred to as Garden Wall or Highline Loop, offers an extravaganza of unique features and fascinating terrain. Hikers with vertigo may experience some discomfort near the beginning. Just hang onto the hose. It is more than worth the challenge.
The name of the Grandview Trail is self explanatory in Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona, USA. The old mining route hosts a fascinating history and the current hiking trail reveals some of the original mining trail features. From the top of the South Rim the Grandview Trail descends to Horseshoe Mesa where further exploration is possible past old ruins and mine shafts and to Page Spring (Miner's Spring). There are other trail alternatives. Check with the Visitor Centre and the Backcountry Office for advice and trail conditions. Desert heat requires respect. Carry plenty of water and electrolyte.
Red Canyon in the Dixie Forest of Utah, USA hosts a wide variety of unique and colorful canyon hiking opportunities. The Butch Cassidy Trail is an adventure with historical connections to Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid when their notorious connection with the Hole-in-the-Wall Gang required frequent retreat into this anonymous maze of canyon corridors.
Mount Burke hosts the remains of long-abandoned Cameron Fire Lookout in the Highwood Region of Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada. The summit hosts magnificent views over south Kananaskis Country and there is an exciting, very short, ridge crossing which grab a hiker's attention.
The Stanley Glacier in Kootenay National Park, British Columbia, Canada is a popular hike with a well-signed trailhead on Hwy 93 south between Castle Junction and Radium Hot Springs. From the official trail end viewpoint a more rustic trail continues which loops past caves, Stanley Glacier and over a headwall hosting spectacular waterfalls. Quality hiking boots are mandatory to avoid injury.
Remember to be prepared for fickle mountain weather and carry everything you may need for contingency. Tell someone where you are going and let them know you have returned safely.
Happy Trails. Stay safe.