Pigeon Mountain | Trip Reports | Kananaskis Outdoors Forum

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Pigeon Mountain
November 7, 2010
9:53 pm
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Peter Irwin
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Hiked up to the summit of Pigeon Mountain with my daughter today. We had a bit of a late start and passed a few people coming down on the approach up the powerline. The road was mostly dry up to the junction with the pigeon mountain trail. The weather abruptly changed in the meadows as the wind picked up and snow began to fall. The last bit to the summit was a bit slippery as the lichen covered rocks had fresh snow on them. Couldn't see a thing from the top so we didn't stay long (it was a bit cold to!). By the time we started heading down the weather improved and we noticed a mtn biker on the hiking trail below us. He was heading down hill at quite a clip. When we arrived at the spot where we had seen him I noticed his tracks coming from a singletrack that intersected the hiking trail from the south. A different route from Skogan pass perhaps? It was just below the rocky cliff face you pass on the way up pigeon. About 50 meters downhill from this trail I noticed another new trail heading down a ridge heading west. The biker had followed this trail so I thought maybe a shortcut to the powerline? It descended quite steeply down to treeline and was well constructed. It didn't go near the powerline but remained high above traversing up and down around the mountainside. I thought after about an hour of walking this is not heading for the powerline road at all. Half an hour later we met an old road. The bike trail continued on, maybe to the trans canada trail? We followed the old road downhill. Beside us on the right were no trespassing signs for the firing range. Shortly after we hit the access road to the trailhead. Unfortunately we had to hike uphill on the road back to our car. I couldn't figure out how we had missed the old ski runs and the resort. I guess we must have traversed just above them and then started to descend. The trail had lots of ups and downs so I wouldn't recommend it for descent unless of course you were and expert mtn biker! It was well made and someone had put alot of work into it. An interesting find but a round about route! I'll have to go back and see if the bike trail actually intersects the trans canada trail or not. Lots of old roads and trails in that area to explore!

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November 8, 2010
10:44 am
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Harvie Heights
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Just out of curiosity, do you happen to have a GPS track of the route?

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November 8, 2010
5:30 pm
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Peter, the mountain bike trail you intersected “A Touch of Class” is destined to become the new (unofficial) hiking trail up Pigeon Mtn. and Skogan Pass.  It misses out the horrible powerline right-of-way and its access road totally by starting from Banff Gate Resort. I have not followed it yet, being otherwise occupied, but Alf Skrastins has followed it three quarters of the way to the pass and has some great pics. It looks extremely scenic. I’m hoping he’ll do a write-up on the blog...

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November 8, 2010
8:27 pm
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Not sure if the "Touch Of Class" builders would appreciate the publicity...

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November 9, 2010
9:38 am
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Harvie Heights
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Okay, Steve, why would trail builders not want publicity?

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November 9, 2010
7:43 pm
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RyderDA said:

Okay, Steve, why would trail builders not want publicity?


Well...two words, not mine- "rogue trail"

 

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November 10, 2010
10:24 pm
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"Touch of Class" is a wonderfully designed trail that takes good advantage of the terrain and views along a bench at the base of the steeper south and west facing slopes of Pigeon Mountain. I think it makes a great alternative hiking route up to the normal Pigeon Summit trail and the routes onto the SE meadows of Pigeon Mountain.  I also followed the route down to the Kananaskis Gun Club shooting range boundary, but I did notice the branch trail that led to the top of the old Pigeon Mountain ski runs.  I'm not sure if there is a trail that connects the bottom of those ski runs with the trailhead parking lot, but it would be a short distance. 

I'll have to go back to check out the full length of the trail and possible connections to the trailhead.  Maybe next summer.

If you do hike the trail, keep your head up and remember that this is a mountain bike descent trail. 

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November 11, 2010
1:12 am
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Peter Irwin
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RyderDA said:

Just out of curiosity, do you happen to have a GPS track of the route?


 

Sorry! In this day and age i'm probably the only person that doesn't have a gps or a cell phone! Its still map and compass for me!Smile

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June 3, 2011
1:28 pm
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According to an article in this week's (June 2, 2011) Rocky Mountain Outlook (sorry, no article link; it's only in the print edition, but is visible online), A Touch of Class is an "illegal" trail and will be decommissioned and rehabilitated this summer.

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