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The Edmonton Hiking/Walking Meetup Group Message Board › 21-JAN Elk Island Snowshoeing

21-JAN Elk Island Snowshoeing

A former member
Post #: 7
I am planning on going snowshoeing in Elk Island on 21-JAN-2007; you are welcome to join me, my plan and a caveat is as follows:

TRIP DATE: Sunday, 21-JAN-2007
MEETUP: 1000h North most spot of Kingsway Garden Mall (see photo album)
DEPARTURE: 1015h (sharp)
ESTIMATED DISTANCE/TIME: 12km/6hours (including rests/breaks)

As for equipment, etc, I am planning on buying or maybe renting. Nevertheless, everyone is on their own. Also, only half-decent + snowshoes in good repair please.

Details to follow once I can better devine weather, other priorities, etc.
A former member
Post #: 40
I might be up for it. Heather mentioned a way we could get snowshoes from the U of A for only like $5 or $10 plus deposit. Does this hike plan to take us out over the water again? I enjoyed hiking over the lake last time.
A former member
Post #: 11
tomorrow when i go to school i will chech out the university outdoors club policy and cost of equipment rental and put the info up on the message board. and i will try to upload our photos as well.
A former member
Post #: 12
I have found out for to rent snowshoes it is 20$ a pair and they are mec ones. i also have to leave a credit card imprint as well. and to reserve them i need to put a five dolar deposit . Both the 20$ and 5$ deposits are returned upon returning equipment. if anybody would like to go that way please feel free to e-mail me.Sorry I should have mentioned that IO am renting them from the University of alberta outdoors club.
A former member
Post #: 9
Hey Heather, just so your post as I was going to update mine.

I bought a pair of shoes so will not need to rent. If they are MEC, they are probably good quality (some of MEC's">MEC's shoes even have a ski boot type of binding for ease of entry and exit).

A small caveat when it comes to the length of the trip. I am going to set up a series of GO/NO-GO gates on the trail for turn backs. With a new pair of snowshoes and boots, I am personally breaking my equipment in so don't want to over do it. Same with anyone who is renting.

Hopefully it warms up a bit by next week; should be a good time!
A former member
Post #: 43
I was just told by someone in the equipment rental that the U of A no longer rents out snowshoes. Any other ideas for where I can rent?
A former member
Post #: 11
When I was checking around a few years ago a number of ski shops rent them. However a small plug for my alma mata:


Rents the MSR variety which are indestructible. The price a few years ago was ~$20/wkd so pick up a pair and practice on Saturday.
A former member
Post #: 44
Heather clued me in and so both me and her have rented shoes and will be showing up. If anyone needs to get ahold of me you can reach me via cell phone at 237 4212
A former member
Post #: 12
Date: 21-Jan-2007
Starting Point: Flyingshot Lake Parking lot (South of Yellowhead)
Weather: Cool (-6 to +2C), little to no wind
Route: Parking lot [1100h] > Wood Bison trail [east side] > Flyingshot Lake > Return [1530h] ~12 KM
Map Ref.: Environment Canada; Elk Island National Park; 1:35,000

This was the first snowshoe for the three of us, Heather, Brian (Not a Brick) and I. Heather and Brian rented shoes from MEC (MSR brand, cost $20/day) and I brought my own (Tubbs Adventure series, 36?).

We followed the #11, Wood Bison Trail from the parking lot taking the East (clockwise) direction. Of note is that the West trail uses a separate gate from the East trail; the West gate is approximately 50M due West of the ?biffies?.

The trail was broken by one set of cross-country tracks (not set). After hiking nearly to the south end of the lake, we left the trail and lunched on the shore. After lunch we proceeded northwest along the lake. Snow conditions on the lake ranged from hard, wind packed snow to deep drifts. In one section we walked through a bull rush section extending across the lake.

On the northeast corner of the lake, we observed wintering bison. Other wildlife spotted included a porcupine, a coyote (lopping across the lake) and possibly an elk. The area was heavily tracked with both herbivores (bison and likely deer) and canine (likely coyote).

Of interest was the number of spottings of blood mixed with urine on the trail. A Google searched yielded no hits and the group was speculating whether this was signs of menstruation or possible pregnancy among one of the larger local animals (anyone have any guesses?).

Distance travelled was estimated to be 12KM over 3.5 hours giving an average rested speed of ~ 3KM/h. See the photo section for an approximate route.

Lessons learned:
a. 3KM/h, rested pace is a reasonable estimated speed for snowshoeing
b. 15KM would be an absolute upper limit for a day hiking distance assuming similar snow conditions, a faster pace and an earlier start.
c. I appreciated my 36? shoes and I suspect that Brian could have benefited from having another 6? as well.
A former member
Post #: 14
Well I love the fact that Phrank goes into such detail in his trip logs. My very first snowshoe experience was awesome and Now I really want to go buy a pair of my own snowshoes. The only thing that Phrank forgot to menttion was that on the drive back just after leaving the park gates we saw two very majestic mooses, my fav animal. I just wanted to update the site with our pictures. some of the are from the first hike we did and the others are from the snowshoeing, sorry if they are not in order.
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