New Hike Finishes the Season With a Flourish & a Blast of Winter!
Dana Hike Epilogue Nov. 15, 2015
Although the previous week was not auspicious weather-wise, the Nov 15 weekend of the Dana hike turned balmy once again. Lucky us! This must have spurred a few people to get their last kick at the cat, hiking-wise, as our group totalled a hefty 26 - perhaps a record for a mid-Nov hike! Remarkable timing too, occurring a couple of days before winter slammed in on us!
The morning of the hike started out a bit chilly with a brisk SW breeze in the open, but once in the forest it was a pleasant walk. By lunchtime it had warmed up quite a bit, so that people were starting to “de-layer”. We hit a high of 8º C+ during the afternoon; I could almost feel the palm trees sprouting underfoot!
About lunch time we ended up at a mysterious place, kept under wraps till we got there. Some of the mystery was revealed on site, but there is likely more to come! Joining the hike will be your ticket to enjoying the suspense of what may turn into a bona fide cliff-hanger!
We had barely started to chow down on lunch and what should appear in the meadow below us, not one, but two herds of elk, followed 5 minutes or so by a lone buck in pursuit of his harem! How awesome was that!
On the return lap of the circuit, we traded greetings with a lone hunter & a few that flew by on ATVs on a short stretch of backcountry road that we trekked down to get back on our forest trail. Other than that encounter, we and the elk seemed to have the entire place to ourselves!
A final trek across a few kilometres of scenic rolling hills & overviews of ponds & sloughs bursting with groundwater, brought us to our vehicles. Brett’s GPS recorded approximately a 325 m elevation gain over about 14 km of travel. Give yourselves a pat on the back because that means we actually hiked more than 14 km!
I regret that the only thing missing from the last hike was the Last Supper! Sourcing same for this year’s test run wasn’t in the cards time-wise, but hopefully we can find something for next season. This hike is still a work in progress, so feedback is appreciated.
The Dana hike was the final scheduled hike of the season, albeit a late addition because I wasn’t sure that I would have time to wrap up all the loose ends from my various scouting trips. However, we can continue to hike as a group on a more informal basis. Keep attuned to the Yahoo touring notices for postings and start to think SKIING!
Cliff Speer, Hike Leader