Gunnery Mountain GR:701861

elevation: 2,089 m. height gain: 570 m.
area: South Kananaskis,AB map 82 J/7
2011-Mar-13


Ref: Bob Spirko's Road not taken road access
Hike: RT 5.0; 2.5 up. A little bit needy for sunny weather, Fab and I decided to take the dogs to the Foothills for the weekend. I was hoping we would be able to set feet/paws on grasses but I doubted it... As we drove closer to our objective, I started to feel excited about the absence of snow on the southern aspects. We didn't want the hounds to struggle with deep, unsupportive snow; Fab was willing to forgo the summit if necessary. We parked at the west end of the guardrail on highway 541. Instead of walking along the road to the ascent ridge, we chose to walk along the tree's edge. This traverse is riddled with barbed wire and should be avoided with dogs. One of our Spaniels cut the tip of his ear, which resulted in a moment of panic before noticing where the blood was coming from. A big scare, we were lucky... Once on the way, the hounds were "loving it". The opportunity to hike on ground, grasses and rock was great; except for the wind, the conditions were perfect! I brought my snowshoes, just in case and only used them for a short section midway; Fab didn't have any and did fine. We didn't stay that long at the top, instead, we took a long break lower down. We found shelter at the foot of a big tree and after some treats, the doggies took a nap. This moment was well worth the long drive. We slowly returned to the car and drove a short distance to one of our favorite camping areas where we remained in the car for a bit, parked facing the sunset. Gunnery Mountain and its south-west ridge.
ready to go
Across the highway at the trees' edge.
beginning of ridge
Starting up the windward slope.
windy ridge
Happy, happy dogs.
windbent trees
Evidence of frequent wind.
treed ridge
We're enjoying this outing with the hounds.
treat break
One of several treat breaks.
holy cross
Along the summit ridge with Holy Cross in the background.
from summit
Looking back.
jo at cairn
Reaching the summit.
dogs at cairn
Lincoln pauses while Daisy roams.
jo and dogs
Pleased that we all made it.
fab at summit
Fab recommends we take shelter lower down.
heading down
The abrasive rock reminded us of Doorjamb.
goodies break
Fab is dispensing goodies.
last bit down
Heading back down.
back at road
Choosing the road to avoid the barbed wire.
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