Sunday, April 19, 2009

A walk in the forest - visiting the Malcolm Knapp UBC Research Forest, April 18, 2009

After having one too many pints at the pub on Friday night watching the Canucks beat the St Louis Blues I was determined to get out and get some good exercise - an area with lots of recreational opportunities is the Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, Mission region on the North side of the Fraser River and that is where I ended up today.

Was originally thinking of doing a trip in Golden Ears Park but then remembered that the UBC Research Forest was an area that I hadn't visited very often in the past so that is the story of that trek in photo essay style.

The area is a maze of roads and trails - all pretty well marked. The terrain is gentle - some uphills and downhill - it has been logged in the past as it is a working forest - the public are welcomed but no dogs, bikes, horses etc allowed - it is adjacent to Golden Ears Park - there is limited access to the Forest from the Park - mostly near Mike Lake.

The first two photos show the park entrance and the trails in the lower part of the Forest - my intent was to do the Green loop but I had to change my plans when I realized that the suspension bridge that is out is on the Green loop.

There are a number of historical artifacts on the grounds near the entrance and there has also been some recent logging activity as seen in these photos.

I followed the A road down to the North Aloulette River - it was near here that I realized that I wouldn't be able to do the loop because of the bridge being out and with the River running this fast and high there was no way that a ford could be done.

After taking in the wonderful river flow I retraced my route back to where I joined up with the Yellow Trail - one of the longer loops - this is one of a few shelters that seem to be placed throughout the Forest.

Much of the area that the Yellow Loop traverses has been logged as is evident in this photo where the trees that have been replanted are lined up in an row and the trail is basically straight and even the creeks look like they have have a clear channel.

I found this flower in one of the swampier areas on the Yellow loop - the Yellow Loop joins with the Red Loop which takes one to a viewpoint but I found the views to the south west towards Pitt Meadows and Burnaby Mountain to be hindered by growth so I didn't bother to take any pictures there.

The Red trail was the most natural of the trails and also the one with the most climbing - it took me a little over an hour to do about 5KM of travel - the hangover was mostly gone by the time that I got back to the truck.

As always



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