Distance: 2.5 km
Elevation gain: 245 m View map Download GPS track
In searching for hikes that would be possible in extremely windy conditions I noticed a small named summit on the map between Blackstone Lookout
– our destination earlier today – and Nordegg. I had no illusions that it would be a spectacular hike, but I figured it could be suitably nice and hoped that its name - Grassy Mountain - meant it would also offer some reasonable views from the top, despite satellite imagery that suggested this was highly unlikely.
We spent some time exploring the roads around Grassy Mountain for a path or cutline to the summit before deciding that it would probably be faster to just plot our own route up. Conveniently there was a small parking area off the Forestry Trunk Road northwest of the summit, so we parked there and simply started up the mountain. The forest was open and the bushwhacking minimal along this route, and after just 32 minutes of travel we reached the summit, only 850 m from the car and a tad over 200 m higher.
Views from the summit consisted of moss, snow, trees – both living AND dead – as well as a bit of surprisingly yellow grass, some alder bushes, and a medium sized rock suspiciously located at the exact highpoint of the mountain. We could also see the sky if we looked up, although it too was obscured by trees. I hike for a lot of reasons though, and the exercise, fresh air, and exploration easily compensated for the hilariously bad views this oddly named “mountain” offered.
We were in no hurry to get back to the truck at this point and instead explored a cutline just a bit to the east of the summit. I’d hoped we’d get better views, or at least a view, from it, but all we got were glimpses of mountains through the trees. We returned to the truck the way we had ascended, then spent the rest of the afternoon exploring the road heading to Blackstone Gap. I’m pretty sure we could have made it, but after travelling through a few rough areas about 10 km from the gap I decided it wasn’t worth the risk of getting stuck and turned around to head back to Nordegg.