Sunday, August 22, 2010

Ski-Hill Mountain

Ski-Hill Mountain is another one of the most incredibly beautiful, yet unknown areas of the Rocky Mountains. A couple of Naomi's friends discovered the spot and began building a trail partway there. With one of them as a guide, we followed the trail as far as it went and then bushwacked for the rest of the way until we hit a green valley floor, far high above where we started from. In the center of the valley was a bright blue pool of water, surrounded by grass and flowers. It was clear and cold as ice. A waterfall flows down the side of the valley wall and eventually reaches the pool. We climbed up the grassy wall next to the waterfall, pulling ourselves up the nearly-vertical slope with the help of clods of grass. Then up over the lip at the top, we found ourselves on a rocky plateau, which also held a pool from which the waterfall flowed. Looking down you could see the pool in the valley, glowing like a blue diamond far below. We clambered higher and higher along the side of a jagged row of mountain peaks. The green of the hidden valley (which had seemed so high up) was far below us now, and we were slipping on reddish shale in an area which seemed totally devoid of life. Up over the side of the teeth, we came upon a dizzying view of roller-coaster hills, through which we gradually descended back in the valley in which Valemount is situated. The neatest thing about the whole climb is that probably only about three other people have ever seen it before!

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