Mount Lorette Ponds on Kananaskis Trail in Kananaskis Country, Alberta, Canada.
Mount Lorette Ponds are south of Porcupine Creek and north of Mount Allan Viewpoint on Kananaskis Trail (Hwy 40) west of Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
On a sunny, quiet, weekday early morning, parking past the road sign at the large turnout on Kananaskis Trail allows a short walk north for photos of the ponds on the west side of Kananaskis Trail. Mount Lorette and Mary Barklay's Mountain provide the backdrop.
On the east side of Kananaskis Trail are the ponds created by outflow from the main spring-fed ponds where the early morning water is still like glass and the colors are surreal.
From the turnout, the entrance to the popular picnic area is on the east side of Kananaskis Trail. Parking is at the kiosk and washrooms.
Turning right at the ponds leads in a counter clockwise direction towards the south bridge.
Continuing across the bridge and along the path to the observation deck, a moment is spent with Aaron Browne's spirit. Seated on his bench, there is a classic view of the mountain which claimed his life. Two more died there in 2006 in unrelated incidents. Routes to the summit include several technical climbing routes or a difficult scramble. Loose rock along the route can be risky to negotiate.
The mountain is NOT a hike. Access to the foot of the mountain is via Stoney Trail when risk of being swept away by the Kananaskis River is too high.
Walking paved path along the east shoreline. Endless photographic opportunities.
The walk continues along the east shoreline to the peninsula first, then around to the fishing platform. Mount Lorette Ponds are stocked with fish and crystal-clear water makes the ponds appear more shallow than they are.
Walking back towards, then across the north bridge, views of the cliffs on the east edge of the pond, over emerald water are stunning from the trail heading north on the west side.
Walking carefully across the top of the beaver dam, will provide positioning to capture this photo of Mount Lorette.
And, walking as far as possible will provide this view. Heavy weather is beginning to form up.
Returning south, along the west shore path, passes a couple of small seasonal marshes. Spring flowers are beginning to bloom late this year.
Mount Lorette Ponds are very busy on weekends and holidays. Very early arrival is important to secure a private picnic location. This idyllic place is worth the time and effort.
The water tends to be most still and reflective in the early part of the day. The trail is wheelchair friendly.
Photographs for this post on Mount Lorette were taken on June 23, 2014.