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Anne Elliott
© All Rights Reserved
southern Alberta
taken from car
near Canada-US border
Akamina Parkway
licking salt from road
© Anne Elliott 2017
8 July 2017
Bighorn Sheep
Mountain Sheep
wild animal
Waterton Lakes National Park
side view
Ovis canadensis
on way to Cameron Lake

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Bighorn Sheep, Waterton Lakes National Park

Bighorn Sheep, Waterton Lakes National Park
Late afternoon on 9 July 2017, I arrived back home from a wonderful three-day trip to Waterton Lakes National Park. I had just been on a one-day bus trip to this beautiful park on 24 June 2017, so felt very lucky to be returning for a longer stay so soon. I travelled there and back with friend, Darlene, who had very kindly offered to take me, and we had a fun time, seeing so many interesting things. Thank you SO much, Darlene - I can't begin to tell you how much I appreciated being able to go on this trip with you!

This Bighorn Sheep was seen on 8 July, the second day of this trip, on the way to Cameron Lake. The photo was taken from the passenger seat through the driver's window. Darlene decided to go on a long day hike to Bertha Lake with a few of the group, which I knew would be far too much for me. Car space was limited for other locations, so I was beginning to think I would have to stay at the camp all day - with no walks around the camp grounds, seeing as we had seen a Black Bear in the camp the previous evening! As it turned out, I was able to get a ride with Caroline, for which I was extremely grateful, and we went with another couple in a separate vehicle, to Cameron Lake. There, we went on the forest trail along the edge of the lake, as far as one can hike. This trail is a favourite of mine, especially as it is level, not uphill. A few birds and lots of wildflowers to see and photograph, including a Stellar's Jay that was seen in the parking lot when we first arrived. I think I have only ever seen a Stellar's Jay twice before. A neat bird to see along the forest trail was a Fox Sparrow. More Bear Grass along this trail, so of course I couldn't resist taking a few more photos.

Three days of 32C temperatures, and then I arrived home to find that my thermostat read 29C inside my home. I am not good at dealing with the heat and then to walk and hike in such temperatures was exhausting. Back in Calgary, we had already been having a heatwave, but we have had rain and it temporarily cooled down, thank goodness. Tomorrow, we are back to high temperatures again.

It was wonderful to again be surrounded by such magnificent scenery, go on a few walks/hikes with plenty of time to look for, and photograph, wildflowers, insects, and a few birds and animals. Lots of good company with around 20 (?) people, some of whom I already knew and lots of new faces, too. The trip was organized by Nature Calgary. Everyone was free to go wherever they wanted each day, but for the two nights, we stayed at the very basic but adequate Canyon Church Camp, off the Red Rock Parkway. Dorm-style cabins (about which I will say nothing, lol!), but they do have showers and even flush toilets at the camp. We were fed SO well - lots of variety and good food. We were given two breakfasts and two suppers, plus a packed lunch for the two days. Our huge thanks go out to Jean Kennedy, the camp cook, who cooked and prepared these great meals for us! Jean was there in 2015 and 2016, when I attended this weekend, and it was really good news when I was told that she would be there again this time. The food was so much enjoyed and greatly appreciated!

Our huge thanks to Andrew for organizing this trip so brilliantly! He has been organizing these annual weekends for a number of years now. A great time was had by all.


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