Visitors 53
22 photos

Distance: 4.5 km
Elevation gain: ~250 m

Went hiking on the long weekend Sunday to Ptarmigan Cirque with my mom, who was visiting from Nova Scotia. Figured this would be a scenically rewarding hike without too much effort, which it was, but it was perhaps a mistake on a long weekend. The parking lot was overflowing by the time we descended, the entire cirque was a playground that will take years to recover, and dogs roamed freely.

But the weather was great and the wildflowers were out in full force! There was lots of the usual wildlife too, albeit skittish because of the dogs. Ground squirrels, pikas, and marmots all did their typical warning calls repeatedly (which was actually kind of harmonic) and a small herd of sheep was hanging out on the hill on the west side of the cirque. No rams, but 5 ewes and a lamb.

For those interested in Mt. Rae, the scramble route up the cirque still has quite a bit of snow near the top, but there was a visible trail through it so it was likely climbed the same day.

Categories & Keywords
Category:Lifestyle and Recreation
Subcategory Detail:Hiking
Keywords:Highwood Pass, Kananaskis, Ptarmigan Cirque