A ‘steampunk’ walk in the woods

Cruising for beaver pelts

Awesome walk in Whitemud Park, near Fort Edmonton. Some light rain sprinkles at the start, and lovely cool temperatures, but bright sun by the end.

Went in search of the new suspension bridge, but somehow managed to miss it. Not sure how you miss a bridge, but there was a dead end at the western edge of the trail, with some construction equipment and no-entry signs, so I’m guessing the bridge is visible from the other side. Figures. Nevertheless, the trail is nice, but not unlike other river-adjacent paths in the city. The thing that distinguishes the Whitemud trail is its proximity to Fort Edmonton Park. It’s not everyday you hear the chugging of a locomotive in the middle of the bush. At one point, it was so loud I was envisioning death by steam engine, which would be a unique way to die, especially in this era. However, no sudden dives into the woods required, as the train rolled by on its tracks, located safely just inside the park. Big puffs of steam cutting through the birches, and that very distinctive smell of the train, so evocative of visits to Fort Edmonton when I was a kid.

Along for the walk today was Maggie (my best dog pal), and Maggie’s mom, who also happens to be my sister.

berry-picker extraordinaire

Took the day off, and just lucked out with the weather. I love the sun, but I’m getting tired of excessively hot hikes in the woods. As usual, Maggie availed herself of all the puddles, and was especially fond of the saskatoon berries, which she daintily plucked off the branches, one by one.

About half-way through the trail, a replica of an old Hudson’s Bay fur-trading boat is moored near the shore of the river. Kind of interesting, and yet another feature of Fort Edmonton Park. Haven’t been in years, or at least the last time an aged relative visited from out of province and was in want of some sort of amusement. Kinda feel like a trip to the Fort again, now that I’ve smelled steam engine. Steam engine good.

When creek met river

The Whitemud Park trail leads to the John Janzen Nature Centre, currently being renovated, and not scheduled to open again until next year. Wandered a bit in the wetlands area, but then found our way back to the trail. By that time, about 90 minutes into the walk, the weather had turned warm and humid, but the sky

What stick?

was still wonderfully moody, suggesting another sprinkle or two, and perhaps a cozy afternoon with a book and a caffeinated, and ever so slightly frothy beverage.

A perfect walk, and a perfect day for a walk.

2:24 PM/16C

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