Feb. 28, 2004
We drove out of the fog and into the sunshine!!! Knowing that sunshine was the only thing between us and our Mountain destination was enough to make our day bright. On Saturday, we were on a mission to find waterfalls in the Canmore and Kananaskis area. We drove to the Seebe area where our maps had promised us two waterfalls within a kilometer of each other. To our dismay they both ended up being the product of manmade dams. Horseshoe Falls and Kananaskis Falls were indeed a disappointment but we were sure our other prospects would turn into something much better.
Our next stop was at Upper and Lower Spray Falls just past Lac Des Arcs on a road to a popular mountain resort. The falls were quite literally just off the road, and were completely frozen over. It was a beautiful area for a picnic, and in the summer could be a "getting out of the city" destination point. We actually had to stop at a small gas station/restaurant to ask where these falls might be. The attendant directed us to a couple of locals who were sitting at a table in the restaurant. They told us where Upper and Lower Spray Falls were and then told us that there was another waterfall on Heart Creek, which was only about 8km east of where we were.
Later, we found Heart Creek just off the Lac Des Arcs overpass. There was a trail sign and parking as well. We started out on foot as the path was quite padded down and snow shoes were definately not needed. The path followed the highway for .8km and then turned south toward the mountains and followed the creek. We were excited to see that the creek was frozen solid and could be walked on as a path. The hike was beautiful! The whole time we had Heart Mountain in our sights and the smell of spring in the air. After a few kms, we reached the Heart Falls area and were a bit taken with the beauty of the ice and snow. The waterfall had frozen blue ice, making for a spectacular sight. After a half hour of exploring and Dave almost falling in the cold icy water, I decided to check out a slope behind the waterfall. Dave caught up after a bit and followed me to the top. The view of the Heart River valley was breathtaking.
After a short hike out, (in +8 weather!) we drove down Hwy 40 for our last waterfalls of the day. Dave thought they were a bit cheap, but nevertheless, they were quaint. We managed to fill the day with water and ice, hopefully to visit these in the summer for even more fun.