During the holidays I had the chance to take a hike in the ecotone area of Beauvais Lake in Alberta Canada. I visit this location often as the environment here represents a halfway point between the vast desert prairies, and the beautiful rocky mountains.
On the Northern side of the lake, there exists deep lush forests where the sun can only be seen when its risen high in the sky. On the Southern side lies bare hills that are subject to intense amounts of sunlight everyday, making it difficult for larger species of trees and plants to settle and grow.
When I was learning about Canadian environments, this area was one of the easiest places to witness a multitude of micro climates all within a 20 minute walking distance.
One thing I will say is that it is definitely useful to spend some money on snowshoes! We were post hole walking the whole time. The wind takes away most of the snow that builds up, but many areas are non-serviced trails, and you can fall deep in the snow and tall grasses. If you look closely enough, you can see small field mouse trails beneath the snows surface.
Many people took advantage of the cold icy weather and headed out onto the lake for some ice fishing! We walked a little ways onto the ice, but soon realized that it is not frozen solid in all areas as we quickly fell through to the lakes muddy edges. All for a picture, but well worth it!
As always, I had an amazing time with Mother Nature, and I can’t wait to see her again soon. Happy trails!