Many short, easy hiking trails begin from Sibbald Lake in the Sibbald area near Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada.
The Sibbald Flats Trail is a 1.6 kilometer (1 mile) short and easy interpretive loop trail which begins from the parking area at Sibbald Lake.
There are no brochures at the trail-head on this day but a PDF replica of it can be printed from Sibbald Flat Trail on the Alberta Parks website. It is a very interesting document and worth the read.
From the same source a small portion of a simple map of the area is illustrated below. The Sibbald Flat Trail is to the right top side of the cow's udder, i.e. the Deer Ridge Trail.
The trail is in decent shape but wet with intermittent, short sections of ice and/or snow. Good boots are sufficient.
There is a little secret to Spring hiking at lower elevation. Pick a sweet spot when overnight cold has left the trail frozen and firm. It is usually early to mid morning. The trail is firm and ambient air temperature has warmed up to comfortable. As the day heats up, there is a good chance this same trail will become a muddy quagmire.
Good timing can increase the pleasure and satisfaction of the wilderness experience. At point # 3 on the trail, there is a Y junction and a turn right ascends the small rise to a scenic overlook higher on the hill.
The side trail's terminus is directly above Sibbald Pond with a sweeping view beyond to Moose Mountain and Cox Hill. This easy, single kilometer, round trip diversion is definitely worth the effort and enhanced on this day because leaves have not yet grown on the trees.
At the scenic overlook on Sibbald Flat Trail, a temporary shelter of dubious construction quality stands over clusters of crocus consuming the hillside and creating an incredibly beautiful sight in the sun.
The blooming of crocus is nature's sure sign spring has finally arrived about three weeks late this year. On return to the junction, the Sibbald Flat Trail from Point #3 rises gently around the flank of the hill, then descends gently to join the Deer Ridge/Eagle Hill Trail.
A left turn leads to the edge of Sibbald Pond where Canada Geese immediately swim towards me. Swinging around the end of the pond provides perfect positioning for photos with the warm sun on my back accompanied by a gentle breeze. Magic!
About a minute later the hike continues with a loud honking commotion behind when two Canada Geese relatives swoop into the pond with large wingspans that bring them to a graceful water landing. Their communication creates a beautiful and heartwarming moment.
The Sibbald Flat Trail, with another left turn, skirts over a lower section of the hill to complete the loop back to the Sibbald Lake parking area. Sibbald Lake is still frozen over. The road into Camp Adventure is open and soon the camp will be hosting young people and creating live-long memories for The Boys and Girls Club.
The Sibbald Flat Trail is an easy, short hike, with minimal elevation, suitable for accompanied children. There are many discoveries and opportunities to learn about and appreciate nature.