The 8th of July was a beautiful day with bright sunshine and so I decided to recce a trail in Kananaskis – Chester Lake.

Chester Lake

Close to 11km return with a 310m elevation gain, I figured that I could do a run instead of a hike and try to get back in time for the World Cup semi-final match between Germany and Brazil at 2pm. The run turned out to be tougher than I imagined, with very steep climbs in several sections for two-thirds of the trail. It’s also possible my lack of acclimatization to the high altitude – having just returned from a vacation 4 days ago, rendered me breathless.

Mountain peeking through right at the beginning of the Chester Lake trail

It was one of the most scenic and enjoyable run that morning with Mount Chester and Gusty Peak appearing through the trees in the distance ever so often, as I made my way to the lake.

Meadow on Chester Lake Trail

Going through two open meadows on the last quarter of the trail, the two peaks seemed to open their arms to me as I drew nearer and nearer towards the lake. I arrived at the lake to a tranquil scene – no one around except for one solitary woman trying her luck at fishing.

Arriving at Chester Lake

Considering that I only started off at 10.15am at the trailhead, this was unusual for a popular hike. But then again, it was a weekday, so maybe that would explain the quiet surroundings.

One of the two creeks at Chester Lake, Kananaskis

With two towering peaks flanking the lake, the open grasslands, chirping birds, trees and wildflowers, two log bridges over running creeks, the setting was simply gorgeous!

Bridge over one of two creeks at Chester Lake

I decided to continue on a run round the perimeter of the lake, have a quick snack and make my way back.

The perimeter run took me to the opposite bank of the lake. What a view!

First group of hikers arriving as I began to depart Chester Lake

I actually passed by a few groups of hikers on my run out of Chester Lake. “How fortunate,” I thought to myself, “to be able to capture the beautiful tranquil scene at the lake!”

The run back was just as awesome – plodding through the meadows again with mountain peaks lined up in the distance and forest shades as I neared the end, I felt that this was one of the best trail runs for me this season.

The drive back through highway 40 was spectacular as well – blue skies, mountain ranges, and some wildlife by the roadside. I was tempted to pull over to take shots of the amazing view as the lighting that day seemed perfect by the way it fell on the mountains, enriching the greens and browns, and the sky was soooo blue. But I got a game to catch and the drive back was an hour and 45 mins. “Another time, another opportunity,” I thought.

I made it for the match.