It was a warm-ish winter morning, somewhere around -5, and the weather report predicted that the sun would eventually burn through the clouds. As I headed south to River Park (at 38 ave and 14 street), the sky was covered with a high, fading cloud layer. I walked across the large snowy field at the entrance of the park toward the main trail which follows the somewhat unsightly utility poles. I seemed to be the only human unaccompanied by a canine, and a cute doberman-cross puppy put its front paws on my belly to say hello. There was a wee hillock on my left, at the top of which was the path along the edge of the bluff. Up I went and there was the sun!
Click first image below to see other pictures as a slide show.
After that, the trail went into the woods but followed the riverbank. Maybe I could keep walking north along the river until Stanley Park? Well, no. The riverside trail runs out at the northern end of Riverdale Park. However, the river’s edge was shallow and frozen and snow covered. No human footsteps though. Only bunny trails. Hmm. I went forward tentatively. Crick. Crick. I looked back to see if some water puddled in my footsteps. No, phew. A little later, the frozen edge ran out. All the houses on my right had fences and there was a little corridor of land, albeit bushy, between the houses and the river. Up on the river bank, I followed some bunny prints through the bushes. Woof! Oh my, big black dog hurtling toward me while barking ferociously! Fence about 4 feet high. Mr. Dog stopped at the fence, stood still, looked at me and barked a couple more warnings. He didn’t seem high strung; he was not galloping wildly back and forth along the length of the fence and barking relentlessly. His face and body tension, however, indicated that he meant business. I avoided direct eye contact and kept walking along the fence. I’m not sure if he understood, but I pointed my finger forward and repeatedly mumbled that I was minding my own business and going that way. He watched me carefully, but did not bark again. After that, I very much wanted to get off the river bank. Through the yard of a house under construction I went and onto the sidewalk.
The sidewalk eventually lead to the Elbow River Pathway, which ducked under the Elbow Drive Bridge and then wandered through Stanley Park and beyond. Here’s another slideshow with a few more pics.