"Rice Ridge"
Chain Lakes, Alberta
January 3, 2009

With temperatures near -30C in the morning, we settled on a short afternoon trip in Chain Lakes. I thought this area would be spared of the worst snow, but it wasn't the case and we found ourselves slogging in deep snow much of the time. I had also hoped to reprise our enjoyable ice walk across the lake as we did a year ago when we climbed Willow Ridge, but snow blanketed the lake.

After crossing the lake we followed Willow Creek a short distance before leaving it and heading up an unnamed ridge that I call "Rice Ridge" since it lies adjacent to Rice Creek.

Unfortunately the ridge was mostly treed so views were limited. There was a slightly higher point to the south, but it too was treed. Going there just meant more slogging and extending our stay in frigid weather, so we turned around and headed back. At least the blue sky and scintillating snow made the journey worthwhile.


Crossing the lake, Rice Ridge on the left


Reaching the opposite shore of the reservoir


Frosted willows


Our destination lies ahead


We pass an old wagon


We follow a road a short way.


Sunlight glistens on the trees.


Hiking up a grassy slope


Sentinel Peak and Mount Burke


Willow Ridge (mouse over for a close-up)


Looking west from the top


82 J/1 Langford Creek

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