Once again this year KNPS volunteers are offering free guided interpretive hikes from the Riverside Campground every Saturday morning through July and August. The hikes leave from the park kiosk across from the campground entrance at 9:00 a.m and loop up Jimmy Russell Road and Southwest Passage to the viewpoint then back down Skid Road and Duckpond Trail to the entrance. Along the way participants can learn about the plants and wildlife of the Park, the work of the KNPS and the history of the area. Hikes usually take about 2.5 hours and include a moderate climb up to the viewpoint.
Canada Day Gateway to Nature hikers at the Southwest Passage Viewpoint
Every hike is slightly different as we move through the summer and the plants flower and fade and berries begin to ripen. A number of different KNPS volunteers lead the hikes and each has their own perspective on the things we see along the route.
Canada's only native boa constrictor, the rubber boa, made an appearance on the July 1st hike.
The route that we follow has a diversity of forest types and ecosystems from the open forests of Sunflower Hill where ecosystem restoration has taken place to the dense, moist riparian thickets along the creek by Jimmy Russell Road. The view from the Southwest Passage lookout is exceptional with both the St. Mary Valley and the Rocky Mountain Trench laid out before you.
Particpants stop to learn about the wildlife values of an old dead snag.
So come on out one Saturday morning this summer and learn a bit more about the Nature Park while you get some great exercise and meet some interesting people.