Saturday escape

Last Saturday was outstanding! We put on our "tourist" hats, drove the cowboy trail and met J's folks at Bar U Ranch. We were greeted by this "billboard":

Yah, I started to think we had entered the twilight zone of redneck land with this over the top beef industry propaganda. Fortunately, the beautiful ranch land and foothills in the background spoke to me. Landscape in my opinion can and will trump any human endeavour. Plus ultimately I do respect people who try to make their livelihood from the land.

The ranch was lovely. It provided a taste of the "cowboy" life. Most of the buildings were restored and included some nice displays of artifacts and storyboards. No cattle on the grounds but a few horses were around. The ranch operated a wagon driven by the horses named "Hawkeye" and "Trapper" which appealed to J's and my nostalgia for the movie and tv show M.A.S.H.

We more or less had the place to ourselves...definitely not a tourist trap on the day we were there. The grandparents loved snapping photos of the wee people and relaying their knowledge to them. There were fresh cookies at the ranch house, coffee from a pot over an open fire, a creek running through the property, horses to pat, and open space. Though the moutains were shrouded in haze, their presence was felt and added to the landscape in a remarkable way.

Driving home was relaxing and entertaining. We passed a few miles of fench posts topped with baseball caps. Drove by a busy coffee shop, Navajo Mug, in Longview owned by Ian Tyson. We saw numerous bikers, both motor and pedal. As we moved from the south to the north, we moved through ranch land, forest, creeks. The wonderful space was fabulous eye candy and you can see why it is often used as a setting in movies like Unforgiven and Brokeback Mountain. Heck, Alberta tourism even encourages visiting Kananaskis Country and Cowboy Country through their Reel Adventures road trips. Rest assured I will only take my tourist inclinations so far and will not become a "star" seeker. Honest!


Karen said...

Wow, that sounded very cool even if it was touristy. Sometimes being touristy is fun... which is why so many people do it!

September 25, 2008 at 2:50 PM