It is a world full of beeps, buzzes, chirps, ringtones and other pesky noises. It always surprises me how many of those sounds are constantly in the background, even here at Dogpound North. But once you get 10 miles west of Sundre heading towards the Yaha Tinda Ranch those sounds rapidly are replaced with the sound of buzzing bees and creeks burbling along or thundering over the falls. Sunday morning Brenda and I waved goodbye to civilization and all of its annoying sounds and headed for the Ranch. It is only two hours from home but when it comes to decompressing it might as well be on the dark side of the moon. The only communication we have is one way, we can send a signal back home to family that we are OK or summon help with our SPOT satellite communicator, if they want us they have to either drive out or call the RCMP and have them let someone at the Ranch know we are needed, and they will come looking for us. I will apologize in advance to those with bandwidth issues, there are a lot of pictures in this post. It is a beautiful drive heading out there and we had a beautiful day to do it on. Those clouds were just rolling on by heading for somewhere else.
Quite often there is a band of wild horses grazing on that hillside in the picture above.
After setting up camp we headed up to the falls to refresh our memories.
After a short hike up the canyon we managed to get to the falls and with a little cropping we managed to remove all many other folks who were up here looking a little piece of heaven also. This trip we had a new traveler with us, we brought along my sons dog Mack and you will see him sprinkled throughout the pictures.
Here he is looking out the window of the truck probably wondering where he is being drug off to.
Another shot of Bighorn Creek below the falls.
The collage above is the view that greeted us morning, noon and night from our site at the Yaha Tinda.
Day 2 we headed out on one of our favourite rides across the Red Deer River flats and up Eagle Creek until we branched off on the Poplar Bluff trail that leads us to one of the best lunch spots in the area. From up there it seems that you can see everything for miles.
Here is Brenda coming along the trail on our Strawberry Roan gelding, that we call Blue. Long story and I am sure I have told it many times over the years so I won’t bore you with the details. Don’t much matter as he doesn’t really come when he is called anyway.
Shady spot to tie the horses and a soft bed of grass and mountain flowers for me to lay on and enjoy the view.
And what a view it is.
The next day we took a ride up to the Scalp Creek waterslides, a naturally occurring chute that the kids use just like a commercial waterslide. Great place on a hot day I guess but boy that water looks cold to me.
Above is a shot of Brenda and the pups just watching the water roar by and the photo below a passing hiker took for us.
I have spoken of the Yaha Tinda on many occasions as it is one of our favourite spots to ride. It is a working ranch actually owned by Parks Canada the same organisation who administers all of Canada’s National Parks. This ranch was used until a few years ago to breed, raise and train all the horses that Parks Canada wardens use for their back country patrols. Recently their breeding operation has been shut down and they now purchase suitable mounts and bring them here to train them for their wardens. The wardens are also brought here for a little training on how to care for their equine partners. Now I know one of our readers Ivan from Roadtrip 2010 used to be one of those wardens so if my explanation is a little short or off base Ivan please jump in. The white shed in the background of the photo below is their feed storage area and just to the left of that and up against the tree line is the actual ranch headquarters.
After three days with no buzzes, clicks, beeps or chirps it was time to head back into the real world though. But it is possible to live without 24/7 online contact, I am hear to tell you. Although you do meet some strange folks along these trails out here it is a welcome respite from the real world.