Photos courtesy Peter Belmonte, Fabienne, and Mouk
What is it that is said about best laid plans? After our rides on 24 July, Allan and his wranglers concluded that it wasnt practical for them to trailer the horses up Moose Mountain Road for Day 2 and Day 3 of our rides. The road has many steep grades between Hwy 66 and the trailhead. That, and its gravel paving, made it difficult for their trucks to pull the loaded horse trailers up to the beginning of the trail to Moose Mountain. In fact, on the morning of 24 July, one of the trailers had to be unloaded, and the horses walked to the meeting point, after the truck pulling it stalled on a grade about 2 km from the trailhead.
Station Flats is located about 3 km east of Moose Mountain Road, just off Hwy 66. It has a parking area, restrooms, and permanent horse corrals used by park rangers and local cattlemen. Allan decided that he and his son John would camp overnight with the horses at Station Flats. Our riders would then meet him there, and by following back country horse trails, they would eventually reach the trail to Moose Mountain.  Unfortunately, because of the additional time required to cover the extra distance involved in getting to the Moose Mountain Trail, we were not able to also ride up Canyon Creek. If we had tried, it would have been a 15 hour day (at least!), and as it was, by the time our riders got back to Station Flats they had all spent more than enough time in the saddle, thank you very much!
The photos you see here were taken on 25 July. While there were heavy rains in Bragg Creek the night before, the morning was mostly sunny. There was no rain on Moose Mountain, however, the weather was unstable and there were many dark clouds over the summit.
 The Tom Snow Trail runs north from Station Flats and winds through pine forests and gently rolling foothills covered with tall grasses and wildflowers. It meets Packers Trail about 6.7 km from Hwy 66. Packers Trail runs west, up the rugged eastern flank of Moose Mountain Trail. Through a series of switchbacks, Packers Trail gains more than 300 m (about 1,000') in altitude in less than 2 km. It joins the Moose Mountain Trail about 1.3 km north of the trailhead on Moose Mountain Road and about 3.8 km from the Tom Snow Trail.
BG / 18 May 2008
Revised 19 October 2008