October 2017 – Nordegg, AB near David Thompson Area
Directions: Going west from Rocky Mountain House down Hwy. 11, take the turn off just across from the Nordegg town access (Shunda Road).
Time: Approximately 4-5 hours total
Elevation: 2,035 m
Elevation Gain: 915 m
I haven’t really spent any time in the David Thompson area but it’s only 3 hours from Stony Plain. It’s a quieter, almost more mysterious area than the National Parks. Sarah and I took the day off work and drove there. She wanted to leave at 5 am as always, but I convinced her that since I hadn’t picked a super long hike, she should let me sleep in until 7 😪 it ended up being a really full day so she was right.
We drove on the back roads through a reserve and she stopped to pet a few wild horses. We eventually got to a truck stop on the reserve where a woman told us that the owner just let his horses run free 😡 the vibe was eerie, there wasn’t any farmed fields, just forests and hardly another car in sight except for those going to work in the backroad power plants. Eventually we found range road 152a but as usual, thanks to google, it went the opposite way. You could tell where Coliseum Mountain was, it’s super unique in that it literally looks like a coliseum shape on the top. So we took 152b, also labelled as Shunda I believe? Forgive me if I’m wrong because I forget. There was then amazing signs the whole way down the road that said “Coliseum Trail”. We were the only ones in the parking lot which was right next to what looked like a couple cabins. Again, not a soul in sight.