Each year, the Wagner side of the family (Heather's side) gathers somewhere for a weekend reunion. In the past we have convened for house boating in BC, camping in Saskatchewan, and various other locales and activities. This year, our destination was Neil and Susan's place in Hillcrest Mines, one of the small communities that comprise the Municipality of Crowsnest Pass, also the place where 189 miners lost their lives in a horrific explosion in 1914, just 5 weeks shy of WWI.
The added wrinkle to each year's gathering is that we each take turns planning. Kathryn and Michael (Heather's brother) concocted an activity for yesterday, which they kept completely secret until the moment before it was time to leave. It was a Crownest Pass scavenger hunt.
We found out we would be split up into three teams: Team Escape, Team Ridgline and Team Impreza - one group per vehicle.
Your team will be given a garbage bag, a paper clip, a smart phone and a picnic lunch
, read the instructions. You will have until 1 pm to complete the following challenges:
- Take a photo of your team at a waterfall
- Identify and bring the leaves from 3 native and 3 non-native plants
- Perform a random act of kindness
- Take a photo of the oldest team member splashing at the waterpark
- Help the community by picking up a full bag of litter
- Bring back 3 jewels of the Crownest Pass
- Take a photo of a man wearing a dress
- Tour a local mine
- Take a "I can't believe we all fit in here" photo
- Make a sculpture and display it in a public place
- Bring back the most interesting thing you can trade for a paper clip
I was teamed up with Neil (Heather's dad) and Dylan. We immediately went into strategic thinking mode and quickly took off. Here are a few pictorial highlights:
|At the entrance of the Greenhill Mine, Blairmore|
|We found our first 'jewel' of the Pass here: a core sample|
|Love the texture of the corrugated metal siding at the mine entrance|
Knowing there was a Tim Horton's just up the road in Blairmore, I saw an opportunity to execute a very simple act of random kindness. We would go and get ourselves some coffees and pay for the orders of the three people behind us in line.
|The line-up to get in was epic, which inspired me to take a shot of us in the entrance. I couldn't believe we all fit in there.|
|The two seniors were traveling from Fernie back to their homes in Lethbridge. The fellow in the middle was a French Canadian biker. All three were delighted with our act of kindness. The lady in the back was an observer to the whole thing who obviously enjoyed watching what was happening.|
As soon as I saw the "man in a dress" I pictured one of those historical murals where you stick your head through a hole. I knew I had seen it before, and I was pretty sure it was in Flumerfelt Park. I was right, and we were able to knock off another item at the last at the spray park located there.
|Getting Neil to smile for a picture was a treasure unto itself|
We headed into Coleman, as I had seen some garage sale signs - thinking Dylan would be able to spark up a trade for the paper clip. As it turned out, the "garage sale" was one of several stores with everything under the sun. But the trip was not for not, as we found two additional 'jewels' of the Crowsnest. I picked up an amazing old piece of leather luggage - probably 100 years old - and Dylan found a pair of James Bond VideoDiscs.
Our final stop was out at Lundbreck Falls, where we checked off three more items from our list, including picking up a bag of garbage.
|Our garbage sculpture at Lundbreck Falls, which immediately went into our garbage bag|
|Our triple selfie at Lundbreck Falls|
It was a great activity and prompted us to explore the region in a way that was fun, informative and memorable. Here are a few highlights from the other two teams:
|I can't believe we all fit in here!|
|I can't believe we all fit in here!|
|Triple selfie at the falls.|
|Ben was very brave (and dramatic) having his diva moment.|
|The lady at the store had a lot of fun with this challenge. It completely made her day being a party to this fun.|
|Ben offered to carry out grocery bags for some customers at the store. The first two offers of help went unaccepted.|
|Ben had the most fun creating this sculpture on Frank Slide|
We met at the ice cream store in Bellevue, revealed our treasures and shared our tales. It was an outstanding way to spend time with family and explore a community.
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