100 years ago this week is a big day in history for Alberta. Women received the right to vote. Women became persons under the law. That is a big deal. For all the complaining I do about how far women still need to go to achieve complete equality, I am pretty pleased I live in 2016 rather than 1916. Knowing me the way I do, I can pretty much guarantee that I was a vocal suffragette or at the very least a participatory suffragette.
Henrietta Muir Edwards was one of the Famous Five who were important figures in Canadian history and the have 5 Edmonton River Valley Parks named for them. This was my 1st Famous 5 Park and my 4th park in my quest to visit all Edmonton River Valley Parks this summer.
I was anxious to get to this park because Edmonton is in the process of adding the Valley Line through here. Soon construction will happen and the lovely little park will change because of the LRT (Light Rail Transit) slated to come through here. Evidence was clear, this will begin sooner than later. The park signage was gone and I had to dig up some internet evidence that it once existed.
The sign says Trail modifications begin April 20.
I didn’t park in the parking lot. I came from the east and parked further down in the residential area of Cloverdale. I love this little neighbourhood and have a strong desire to live here in my near future.
Cap and I began at the statue of George the Principal of Bennet School. He must have been quite the community leader to have a this area of the park dedicated to him.
This park starts out quite urban with brick sidewalks and lovely light posts. We walked across the open grassy promenade and found our way on dirt trails leading to the river.
I run through here frequently so none of this was new for me. I did notice the sounds of nature we deafening this morning. I love that I can be this close to the Edmonton Downtown Core and still feel like I am in the middle of the wilderness. The valley came alive today with birds, ducks and geese calling out to Cap, mocking him because he couldn’t reach them.
We turned away from the River and walked towards the Clover dale Bridge, the foot path that leads to Louise McKinney Park, another of the Famous 5.
It is April and I saw leaves budding out on the trees. I don’t know about where you live, but there should still be snow patches and no real visible signs of green for another couple of weeks.
When I run though this park, I tend to keep to the foot paths, what I didn’t realize is this is a lovely picnic spot with stoves for camp fires. I had no idea. This has been the greatest lesson for me, slowing down to take in my surroundings. I thought of lost opportunity for family picnics and made a mental note to come back once the construction began. Knowing Edmonton, they will leave this place better than they found it once the train comes through.
Captain and I walked up to the Bridge to take in the view.
Although you cannot tell, the paths were busy this morning with friends running their 20kms in training for the Vancouver Marathon in a few weeks. It was good too see so many people I know. It was a stark contrast to the deserted feeling I had last week in Goldstick Park.
I added a clarify filter to show the detail of the river valley and noticed all the ice has melted.
The Hotel MacDonald looked majestic this morning.
The Chinese Gardens can be seen in the distance of Louise McKinney Park, a place I will visit later this summer when I begin my explorations of the North Side of the River.
Cap and I continued exploring West towards Rafter’s Landing where the Edmonton Queen has been put on the auction block, opening bid $10, 000. Its a fixer-upper with limited traveling ability because of the sand bars on the river. I never did go for a trip via Edmonton Queen, but I have paddled down in my trusty canoe. If you ever get the opportunity to see the valley from that perspective, I highly recommend it.
Captain had a run-in with a protective gander and the two of them go into a bit of a scuffle. Luckily for me, the gander flew off because it was all I could do to hold my dog back from a tastily snack. I think the goose realized this and decided to save himself, so he and the missus flew off in unison while I stretched out my shoulders. My Pup is a big boy who is stronger than I in situations like these, but I managed to keep him at bay. I then spent the next half hour picking burrs out of his fur.
While I didn’t expect to learn or discover anything new here at this park because I frequent it regularly, it did teach me to always expect the unexpected. Give the park a visit before it changes on the 20th.
Next week The Captain and I will visit my favourite running path Mill Creek Ravine Park, but as usual explore path not travelled by me.