In late June of 2019, some friends and I decided to try the trail up to Hummingbird Plume Lookout. Unbeknownst to us, there had been some changes to the trail start from Ribbon Creek Day Use, in an attempt to make that section more interesting for the cross-country skiers who use it in winter. Unfortunately, the new meandering trail also made things somewhat longer for us to hike.
The area is already somewhat of a maze of interlinking trails, and to actually go to Hummingbird Plume Hill, you had to use Skogan Pass and Sunburst trails first. In future, I may try a different route to at least cut a few kilometers off the distance.
Along the way, we saw a few small creeks with tiny waterfalls, but as we were mostly in spruce forest, there wasn’t much in the way of long distance views as we hiked, although it was pleasant going. One of the attractions on this hike was the lookout building, built in the 1930s by German POWs who were working in the area salvaging timber from a 1936 fire. The tar-paper shack is apparently grounded, if you’re ever stuck up there in a thunderstorm, but honestly, it looks so rickety, I’d be more afraid of stepping inside and having it collapse on me. But there’s also a picnic table near the building, and a lovely flower meadow as well.
Back in the ’30s, the top of the hill was bare and it truly did function as a lookout. Now the trees are so overgrown, you can’t see anything from the building, but if you follow a short trail to the eastern edge, you get an amazing view of the Kananaskis Valley. Across the valley you see Mt. Lorette, the Fisher Range, and the “G8 Summits”. We took our time there, snapping photos and just enjoying the extent of the views up and down the valley.
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