Tag Archives: Edmonton

Monday in the Woods at Lunch

Below the High Level Bridge

A much-needed walk today at noon on a 55 minute loop through Emily Murphy Park. I blew a couple of opportunities to walk this weekend – stuff to do, I guess – but I knew it would be nice today as well, so I brought my spikes and off I went at lunch. The blue sky and sun were amazing, but down in the woods, it was pretty frosty. About -7C. Later in the afternoon, it was 4C. Although we are gaining light (32 minutes since the solstice) the days are still so short it takes a long time to warm up. Once I was walking up Emily Murphy hill, I had my gloves off.

Approaching the LRT Bridge…whatever it’s called

On the trail that runs parallel to the river, my phone died. The cold sucked its will to live. I know the feeling, but -7? I think I need a new battery. Or a new phone.

I didn’t walk much after Christmas. It was super cold, and as per usual, I was super lazy. On January 2, I was back at work, and we had a record breaking day at 7.9C! It was a drippy, beautiful day. I went for another lunch time walk just around campus. We’ve had so many freeze-thaw events it’s virtually impossible to walk in the river valley and ravines without micro-spikes. Or even the sidewalks some days.

A January 2 walk around campus on a record-breaking day.

Moments before my camera died just before the trail into Emily Murphy Park

12:00-12:55/-7 or thereabouts, 4 above later.

Christmas Eve Day

Stella makes her case for a walk

I write this more than a week past my last ‘good’ walk and on my last day of work for the year. It’s Christmas Eve, and while I am here until noon, there is not much going on, so…

And also, this may prove to be my one and only post from December 2018, but I hope not. Surely there will be some walking opportunities over my week off? You see, that’s the difference between Donna pre and post 2011, when I moved over to the south side. Before, I would create the walking opportunities. It was very rare that I didn’t walk five or six times a week, even if it was just the short 25 minute commute home to Mill Creek. Now, I seem to wait for the perfect weather, or I don’t think about it at all. Sigh…

Stella and I in Whitemud Ravine

Funny how habits, ingrained habits, can vanish if the circumstances change. I moved out of my very walkable neighbourhood in 2011 to move in with Sharon’s family for a year, and I stayed for six. And now, back on my own for eight months, I’m still struggling to regain my old habit of making a daily walk my top priority.

In any case, last Friday, December 14, my office gifted us with a day off, a ‘shopping day’, and so while I did hit a mall at some point, I still managed to drive over to my sister’s place to take her dog, Stella, for a walk in a deserted Whitemud Ravine. It was almost creepy how deserted it was, and gloomy. It was book-ended by two beautiful blue sky days, but Friday was overcast and it felt very dark in the woods. Glad I had Stella with me for this reason, and a million more.

We had a good time. I wore my micro-spikes and they were extremely helpful. The trails are quite icy from the warm weather and occasional rain mixed with snow, which seems to be the norm these days. Stella, as usual, wore her naturally spiky nails.

A walk is a walk, though, and we had a good time.

I don’t remember what the temperature was, but not too cold. Probably around -2C.

New Paths, Old Paths

Rossdale

I found a new path that runs below downtown via a trail that begins at 116 Street, ending at either Ezio Faraone Park by the High Level Bridge, or at the Glenora Club on River Road. I am SO happy about this. It means I can take the abysmal Groat Bridge out of the equation when walking home.

Victoria Trail, near 116 Street

I’ve seen the trail head before while walking up Victoria Trail, but hadn’t explored it until now. It’s beautiful and quiet, but I probably won’t be able to use it once it gets dark at 4:30. Until then, however, it will serve as my new and much improved commute home!

LRT bridge

Continuing along river road, I crossed the LRT Bridge and walked over to Walt Junior and discovered that the trail on the river side of the Epcor Plant has been reopened after YEARS of closure due to the construction of the bridge. This too is thrilling! This lovely little path which includes a sweet little wooden bridge leads right into Rossdale. For many years, it was one of my favourite paths, and it’s so much nicer than walking in traffic beside the baseball park (whatever name it’s going by these days.) In fact, both of these trails, one new, one old, will help to exclude traffic from my commutes, or at least minimize it. So glad I took this route today.

Heading to the Walterdale Bridge (Walt Junior)

Walt Junior

It was a marathon, though. Two and a half hours. I probably could have shaved a half hour off if I had brought my bus pass. Once I emerged out of the river valley via the funicular, I still had another 20 blocks to walk, half of which was along busy Jasper Avenue, and the other half along the 102 Avenue “Oliver Bahn” –  a much quieter and greener walk. I would have been more than happy to skip the first part. Still learning about my new neighbourhood!

Newly reopened path into Rossdale on south side of the Epcor plant

Little bridge near Rossdale

10C/1:00 – 2:30 p.m.

Weed Wednesday

Well, I don’t want to overstate it. However, today –  the first day of Canada’s legalization of Cannabis, summer returned. Blue sky, a temperature of 25C!! and some non-cloud clouds here and there as people everywhere seemed to be imbibing. It was a happy day. And a beautiful day. Not that I use, but it seemed to lift the mood of the country, or maybe it was just the weather.

Once the second dump of snow left in early October, it was like it took the rest of the leaves with it. What emerged was no longer peak fall, but full on, leafless fall. It too is beautiful, but like all the seasons this year, it seemed to come all of a sudden.

Walked home from work, down into the woods and then up to the Legislature grounds. Nothing spectacular…I unfortunately had to stay a bit late. But still, it has been a gorgeous October for the most part. About time, after the weather suck that was September.

24.7 (25C!)

And then this happened…

I made a Chelsea and Andy in honour of their wedding

This is going to be a photo post, because it’s so nice and pretty today (Sunday) but Friday and Saturday were pure rubbish. Once again, it snowed. It snowed hard. Snowed so hard I had to shovel my car out.

I am dog-sitting Stella for four days because most of my family is in California for my step-niece Chelsea’s wedding. Even though I went for two walks a day with the doggo in the heavy wet snow, which did not make me happy, I will admit to a small frolic in the snow on Saturday. It wasn’t until all the snow melted (6cm plus) on Sunday morning that we went for a proper walk in Whitemud Ravine. Landscape-wise, it was like the snow hadn’t happened at all. Mentally…I’m still scarred.

Snow or no snow, ball is still ball

Whitemud Creek Ravine, the next day

First full day of Autumn in Whitemud Ravine

It was about 6C. 

 

A Summerfall Walk

Yes, it’s still technically summer, but in Edmonton in the middle of September, especially this September, it’s just a word that elicits fond memories of a season that has already passed.

But yes, Wednesday, after a week (or is it longer?) of inclement weather, it was finally nice enough to really enjoy the changing colours of the river valley. And it was beautiful, especially against a blue sky. How I have missed you!

I walked from the university, over and then under Groat Bridge, and then west through MacKinnon Ravine and finally Glenora, followed by Oliver. About an hour of gorgeous vistas and autumnal scents.

And a random wasp nest.

5:00-6:15 pm, 15C