Our temperatures continue to be challenging and it's been quite a while since we've seen any number that doesn't start with a minus. But daytime highs of -15 do have some benefits, for instance fewer people head out to the mountains, so fresh snowfall stays pristine.
I personally love to walk in the cold temperatures with the whole place to myself. The winter sun is enough to warm my face and everything else is bundled beneath layers of modern fabric. One of my favourite locations at this time of year is the westernmost end of upper kananaskis lake. The water shallows here and the lake bed undulates around small peninsulas that break up the thick ice, contorting it into natural carvings.
When I set out last week for my first long snowshoe plod across the lake this year, I was a little concerned about the amount of fresh snow and whether any of the ice would be visible at all. But it was a beautiful bright, cold afternoon and the temptation to hike across that pristine landscape was too much to resist. So, on with the snowshoes and backpack and off I went skirting the islands, edges and anywhere else I could find protrusions of ice.
At the western end of the lake the most reliable ice of winter was again visible. I found a number of great formations providing plenty of photo opportunities. The 'shark' below is entirely natural including that dark black eye and was one of a number of nice shots of the day. It's not something to add to the portfolio, or to put on the wall at home, but it's a fun shot and often that's enough.
If you want to visit this location, wait until late January into February for the ice to thicken and the water level to lower breaking the ice. Drive to the 'North Interlakes Day Use Area' car park and then walk west along the shore, on the frozen the lake or through the forest for around 3 km to the 'Point Campground' at the western end of the lake. You'll find the ice all around the peninsula there, but keep your eye out for sharks.
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