Seventy Buck Valley - Sibbald - Hiking Alberta

 

Seventy Buck Valley is in the Sibbald Creek area of Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada.

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Parking for Seventy Buck Valley is at roadside 4.5 KM (2¾ miles) west of the junction at Sibbald Creek Trail (Hwy 68) with Powderface Trail in Kananaskis Country.  The location is on the north side of the road across from Crane Meadows.

Seventy Buck Ridge is the first ridge west of parking at roadside but on this sunny Spring day the decision is made to hike an off trail ascent of the ridge on the east side of Seventy Buck Creek.  There is an obvious rocky outcropping on the south face which might provide excellent views over Crane Meadows.  The bushwhack may be a good test for new glasses in challenging terrain.

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Parking for Seventy Buck Valley along Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada The target for the day on the East side of Seventy Buck Valley along Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Beginning the ascent above Seventy Buck Valley along Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Simple route finding is slightly compromised by rocky drainages, however, crossings are within easy range on the sustained ascent.  Terrain varies between easy and challenging.  Snow cover in the forest increases with elevation but open spaces facilitate progress.  The alternative is navigation through dense brush.  Areas of blow down are more challenging.  Near the top of the ridge there is a large section of lichen-covered rockfall.

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Drainages on the east ridge of Seventy Buck Valley along Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Varying snow cover on the east ridge of Seventy Buck Valley along Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Deadfall and blow down along the ascent above Seventy Buck Valley along Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Rockfall area near top of east ridge at Seventy Buck Valley along Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Poor vision in ugly terrain motivates a retreat.  The alternate descent route is straightforward with the exception of one large area of blow down where the path of least resistance is a challenging climb over a jumbled maze of fallen, dead trees.  A partially frozen creek with mossy borders creates a pleasant interlude until previously created tracks in the snow lead back to the car.

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada A partially frozen, moss-surrounded creek in Seventy Buck Valley along Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Beautiful ground cover through forest above Seventy Buck Valley along Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Seventy Buck Creek at Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Slightly to the west side of Seventy Buck Creek, there is an old logging road with a trail sign which reads 'No Motorized Vehicles' beneath the likeness of a bicycle.  There is time in this day to walk part of the road.

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Various sections along the east side of Seventy Buck Ridge have been logged over many years but the road is still a pleasant and scenic walk through forest.  Unfortunately, access to the trail which ascended to Seventy Buck Viewpoint has been obliterated.  Tiny new trees will repopulate areas which have been logged in the past.

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

After a couple of kilometers of easy hiking on a very gentle ascent, the snow deepens in protected areas to a point which encourages return into south views of forested foothills above Crane Meadows.

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Time to turn about in Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada The view south from the logging road in Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Before the return to Calgary, it is nearly mandatory to observe the early spring beauty of Crane Meadows.  Soon the area will burst into Spring colors.  Deer Ridge provides a familiar background with the distinctive two humps on the east horizon.

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada View east over Crane Meadow to the humps of Deer Ridge east of Seventy Buck Valley along Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Crane Meadows near Seventy Buck Valley across Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Seventy Buck Valley, Sibbald Creek, Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada Crane Meadows across from Seventy Buck Valley along Sibbald Creek Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada

 

Crane Meadows were originally named Warhpepan tidan (Sour Grass clearing) by Indigenous People.  Source 'Kananaskis Country Trail Guide', 4th Edition, Volume 2, Page 251. 

From the same source, Gillean Daffern's iconic Kananaskis Country hiking guide informs the name, Seventy Buck, originated many years ago when rancher Percy Copithorn, searching for stray cattle on snow covered ground, lost a wallet containing 70 dollars.  Perhaps the wallet is still out there.  It was not found on this day.  

The new glasses fail the day's test.  Possibly a longer learning curve.  Frustrating.

Early Spring photographs for this post were taken on Monday, March 9, 2015 in the Sibbald Creek area of Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada.

 

 

 

 

 

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Comments

What a contrast in hikes. Both equally beautiful. Web cam show snow has fallen so I guess both will now have changed. Hope the glasses get sorted satisfactorily soon.

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