You’d never know the car is only a couple kilometres that way.
From here, it’s easy to imagine that we are in the middle of nowhere, an alpine meadow, surrounded on three sides by steep, but not unassailable slopes. Indeed, the trail we are following is bending towards one of those ridges, climbing out of the meadow and onto the shank of the hill.
As we begin to climb up the steep slope, I pause for a moment to look back at where we’ve come from. Down there, close to a kilometre back, I can still see the bright blue of the sign marking where the trail leaves the flower-strewn meadows and enters a short section of trees before popping back out onto the road.
I can’t see our truck from here, but I can see the road, winding its way back towards the Highway. From here, I can see that we’re not as remote as might have first appeared, when we entered the meadow. There are cut blocks on the mountains opposite us, and the road, but, making our way up and onto Ptarmigan Ridge, I realize that doesn’t matter for the moment. Behind us may be signs of human industry, but ahead of us lies peak after endless peak marching off into the distance, the furthest still capped with white. We stop for a few moments to catch our breath before heading on towards Therapod Peak. As I take a drink of water, I stare out at the view. This, I think, is what heaven must look like.
While there are places you can go for days and even weeks around here without seeing another soul, most of the trails have been built with the day-tripper in mind. Whether you choose to drive to Kinuseo Falls, hike to the top of a mountain or paddle down the Murray River, this land was made for you.
If hiking is your thing, there are dozens of trails that can easily be hiked in a day. Mountain biking? Check. Paddling? Do you prefer flatwater or moving? ATVing? Snowmobiling? Jet boating? Cross Country Skiing? Snowshoeing? Check, check and check.