If you followed me last year, you will remeber that we hiked quite a bit in the five months of the year we were in Canada. (Now you see why my monthly book wrap up is call Not Just Hiking?) Sixty-nine miles to be exact. We love to ski here, but we love to hike more. Skiing is the same just about anywhere you go (it is actually better in Colorado), but the hiking in Banff National Park and surrounding areas is like nothing else in the world.
So it was with a light step and joy that we started out on our first hike of the year. Usually you don't hike in Calgary in February. This year, however, has been exceptionally warm and snowless. We were told about this hike many months ago as a good place for beginners - well, since we never considered ourselves beginners, we never tried it. But a cloudy, warm day in February seemed like a good time to get our hiking legs back in working order. They are different than skiing legs. We needed to start off a little slowly since we hadn't trained and we wanted to take the dog.
Now this was his first hike. He is older (10) and suffers from arthritis in one leg. But this was only 4 miles so we thought he could make it. He ended up doing better than the rest of us. I still don't think we will take him often because when his leg starts hurting he just quits and you can't quit 5 miles out in the middle of the forest. Isn't he gorgeous? By the way, he has more frequent flyer miles than many people and this is the 3rd country he has lived in.
Fullerton Loop isn't in our go-to hiking guide books, but we knew the area and had a map. It was pretty straightforward with a little snow and ice on the way up but clear on the way down. We didn't get a view until we stopped for a lunch break, but it gave us something to look forward to later in the season.
Soon we will be hiking there!
There seems to be a bit of discussion as to how long this loop is. All the maps we have show different distances. (I know! It is a MAP!) The most reliable seems to be the guy with the GPS who clocked this at 6.5 km and 364 meters of elevation gain. Seems about right.
Miles hiked in 2012: 4
Miles hiked as a family since arrival in Canada: 73
Another by the way ... I have currently booked 6 days of hiking in Glacier National park this summer. My favorite place In. The. World.