My plan for this day is to hike The Wedge above Wedge Pond. The plan is interrupted by my compulsive decision to use the morning to hike Hummingbird Plume Lookout near Nakiska. I know there is insufficient time left in the day to realize my initial objective, however, there is time for lunch at Wedge Pond followed by a bit of advance trail reconnaissance for a subsequent attempt at The Wedge. Mountains are like good friends – they are always there when you need them. The Wedge Pond Day Use Area is clearly signed on Kananaskis Trail, south of Evan-Thomas Creek and the Mount Kidd R.V. Park.
The short hike downhill from the Wedge Pond trail sign, near the washrooms, leads to a wide shoreline around the pond with expansive views of surrounding mountains. The distinctive flat summit of The Fortress is compromised by low cloud. Overcast skies are threatening precipitation.
It is a beautiful, relaxing place. Soon the Wedge Pond water level will be increased and the pond will be stocked with fish for summer recreation. I will take half an hour to relax and enjoy lunch before hiking the interpretive trail around the pond. There is a complex of bicycle paths and hiking trails which link Wedge Pond with the Mount Kidd R.V. Park, Evan-Thomas, Kananaskis Village and the Ribbon Creek/Nakiska area, connected by Stoney Trail to the trails associated with Barrier Lake.
Immediately following a delicious and satisfying lunch, I pack up and hike the flat, easy, 1.0 KM (0.63 mile) trail, through a mix of deciduous and evergreen trees, around Wedge Pond. There are periodic access points to the shoreline along the way. Each has its own unique view of mountains across the far side of the pond. Water levels are seasonally low.
My objective is to locate an obscure trailhead near a culvert, as described in the Kananaskis Country Trail Guide, Volume 1, 4th edition. The rustic trail is there, perpendicular to the Wedge Pond circumference loop trail. The culvert is small, metal and nearly covered by accumulations of earth. The trail is somewhat overgrown and littered with dead fall. I will begin the exploratory trek up onto ‘The Wedge’.
Wedge Pond is an ideal location to relax, have a short hike around a small, beautiful pond, maybe read a book, or take some photographs. It is a wonderful place to enjoy a picnic in the mountains but it might be wise, on a summer weekend, to arrive early and stake a claim to your temporary piece of real estate.