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Since May 11, 2022

Ass Pass

arn smit

left banff at 8:20am, hitched a ride with marika from canmore to mt shark. departed bryant creek trailhead at 10:35am. arrived at marvel lake (Br13) wednesday at 2:45pm. started nice day when we left the trailhead but then consistent rain for the remainder of leg 1. we were in no rush to arrive as the rain would have got us either way. Stu commented on the colour of rock high up where water was falling from, it looked kinda like a bush, which was appropriate for our titled expedition. our campgroundmates commented on our excellent choice of tent pad, which has a couple good overhanging trees from the rain, and good for hammocking. tent pads very far from cooksite/lockers. cooksite/lockers far from washing area. rice and tuna for supper. oreo thins for dessert.



woke up maybe around 6-7, out of bed 8:30am. easy breakfast: cigarettes (courtesy of our new found american friends) and coffee (courtesy of us). sang much of the hike, especially along the meadow, hearing our reverberating voices against the giant rock wall on one side of the valley (sometimes both sides!) arrived at ass pass around 12:30pm, overgrown bush leading up to it. toasted george and made our way to assiniboine campground. arrived early afternoon and trail jogged up to the niblet, passing liz's sunburst cabin. amazing. made it to tea at lodge at 4:30. amazing. met our friends nicole Matt and Marika, as well as their friends and lightly drank and supped. amazing. went back to our own camp and supped (not before indulging in psychoactives). quickly feared at the shelter during come up and quickly packed away once coming up. dazed and showed gratitude in a hammock for an hour, then went on nature walk w stu to the foot of assiniboine. amazing sunset, colours, presence and awareness. amazing. 



arose from slumber at 8:30, Stu was up already, and we went down to the lakeside again. there was a marmot home so they were doing marmot things. we also found emily abi and marika (different one heh). we were in no rush to get to og lake, so chilled out some more, ate some leftovers from yesterday, packed and left magog not long after noon. sang some songs in the beautiful alpine meadow, very sound of music. chilled on a big rock and looked at assiniboine. talked about farming and cabin. arrived at og lake around 1:45pm, set up tent just in time for hail to fall. ate midday lunch, and went down to the lake. chilled on a big rock and looked at assiniboine. came back, ate some things, talked to an IT guy from CMH. brushed teeth, played crib. very chill day in prep for longer day to howie d tomorrow.



arose from slumber at og around 8am, leaving campsite at 9:15. walked through valley of rocks, but it mostly was valley of talks as we ripped about the local economy, housing, and how to make banff better. started gradual climb towards citadel pass, where we crossed paths with many friends: a middle aged couple heading to magog, a few trail runners who heli'd their gear in to assiniboine, and another couple who we sang a blind call and response with. once hitting the pass, it was very windy and we trucked it across the damp yet tumbling, flowing, and generally stunning alpine meadows. took a quick 5 before the remaining km to howard douglas campground. the 15km+ day flew by in 5hrs. arrived @ 2:15pm, set camp, dipped/washed myself and clothes in the lake. continued to enjoy the beauty of the landscape and the sun with stretching/meditation. met 5 franco-edmontonian teachers at dinner (whom we had passed at citadel pass). about 15 mins before writing this, it was discovered that a hiking couple who had a reservation were without a tent pad, as 3 couples arrived earlier in the day who did not make a reservation. the outcome to be revealed.



nature makes me so stoked. i love the sense of pride in being a land-lover and land-protector. i love reminding people to keep their dogs on leashes. i love running with our heavy bags down through egypt valley. i love watching eagles dip dodge and duck across the sky. i love how a sunset can make a face in the side of a mountain. i love wiping my butt with 8 sheets of toilet paper and sanitizing my hands with shitty hand sanitizer. time and space are so realized, down near to their purest forms.



aroseth from thine slumber at 8:45am, departed at 10am. we had a great hammock/clothesline setup at howie d, very homey vibes. except for those 3 tents who were so brazen and unwelcome.. arrived at trappers at 11:18am. ordered lunch, was (surprisingly?) decently priced. got in touch with lovers then casually walked aboard a chairlift. caught up with an old friend and through the sunday-on-canada-day-weekend crowd we sift. sarah, a ssv interpreter, was very keen to share her gdt beta with us!  once we atop the monarch viewpoint, down and up and down across simpson pass we go, sighting out the land in search of bills cabin. though unsuccessful, we gained better lay of the land pertaining to its location. arrived at healy pass at 3:30pm, where we met ciaran, jasmine, ryan and cynthia and shared in great snacks and company. arrived at egypt lake campground at 4:30pm, set camp and went to lake. came back to eat supper, and met 2 couples from yyc. if they lived in banff i could see myself for sure hang out with them. but they are doctors and family lawyers. went back to lake and played on the rocks, looked at the sphinx with our glasses on, and saw many trout, perhaps invasive, plopping up to the surface to catch some supper. 

chilly now. in bed and cozy.



in typical fashion, arose from a deep slumber at 8:30am. whistling pass and the trail towards ball pass junction was cruisey downhill and we found some real nice ski lines in the mountainous faces. I found myself pretty quiet during this time. was I resentful going back to the bustle of disanthropocene? no more songs to sing? i think it was simply listening to what mother nature has to say, and it was up to me to decipher her words amid waterfalls appearing seemingly out of nowhere, blossoming flowers along the path, clean flowing mossy streams. arrived at the campground at 1pm. many many mozzies. to escape the torrential nipping I have spent much time torrentially napping. tomorrow marks the end of our journey. we will climb up a short distance to ball pass, then a slow descent to the banff-windermere highway. hiking the great divide taint is a funny objective but unsurprisingly it has brought humility and gratitude to the front. the fellow hikers on the trail are many of the people you want to connect with. and some of them you just want to make fun of.

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