Gem Lakes Hike

On Saturday we drove a bit north east of here and explored the Gem Lakes in Narrow Hills Provincial Park.  It’s fairly accessible – although we went in a truck, a car could easily make the drive.  The weather was perfect – not too hot, and a breeze to keep the bugs at bay.  The lakes are very small – but very deep!  The scenery was amazing.  There’s info and a trail map on the Sask Tourism site.

I have an album of photos on flickr here.

blueberries starting to ripen

We took our time and stopped often to look at plants, flowers, trees, etc. as well as the beautiful lakes.

prairie lily


the trail was well marked and had info plaques all along


rickety boat left on the shore. The lakes are stocked for fishing.


Pearl Lake!

The lakes are Jade, Opal, Sapphire, Diamond, Pearl (and Little Pearl) then back to Little Jade/Jade.


checking our map

checking our map


Opal Lake – such clear water!


and great for a swim! It dropped off very steeply

We started the hike on the north-east shore of Jade Lake.  Next time, we’ll go the other way (south-west).  After fairly strenuous hiking of the trails, the last km or so is very much up/down hill on that south/west shoreline.  We plan to come back in the fall when the trees begin to change colours.  A great day!

Squat Test!

We had a fantastic trip to the Gem Lakes in Narrow Hills Provincial Park.  I’ll make a post about that this week.  Such a scenic part of our province!

contemplating one of many scenic views!

contemplating one of many scenic views!

I also finished another bulky weight hat.  Man, that yarn kills my hands.  Looking forward to working more on worsted weight and sock weight items now.

Chunky Mittens

I had chunky/bulky weight yarn left over from a hat I’d made during the winter, so I wanted to make mittens to match.  I didn’t have a “go to” pattern because I always make mittens using worsted weight.  I looked around online and found some patterns but they all seemed to be oddly written.  So I just went ahead and created my own.

Lion’s Pride Woolspun yarn

They were a quick knit, but I prefer worsted.

matchy matchy!

Into the donation box!

Hats & Mittens

After my two pairs of socks, I wanted to work on some hats and mittens for charity before deciding on my next sock project.  I have a fair amount of easy-care worsted weight yarn left over from other projects that I want to use up.

I had the crochet hat pending for a long time while I worked on other projects, so once I finished it, I was looking forward to making some mittens to match.

“seafoam green”

Ravelry project page here and here.

aqua blue

These other ones I made a slightly smaller size (10-12 year old?).  I downsized the hat and mittens patterns by winging it, but they turned out okay.  Ravelry project page is here and here.

I have a hat made in bulky weight that I’d like to make mittens to match, so likely will cast on that next.

The gym was closed on Canada Day, but we went out for a slow jog for an “active recovery” day.

missing from the pic is Jye and Crystal

I’m still working on getting my calves so they don’t kill me when I run.  It’s a slow process.

And we went for a drive yesterday up to Candle Lake to pick up something that was forgotten by our friend’s mom.  Beautiful day – sunny, but not too hot.  I hadn’t been to Candle Lake in decades.

Fisher Creek that feeds into Candle Lake

Active Recovery Wednesday

We went out for a meandering bike ride on Wednesday night instead of going to the gym.  My new bike is all fixed from my tumble into the bushes and is riding perfectly now.

Bill on his Pee Wee Herman bike

We followed the Rotary Trail east along the river and then went off on a trail that leads along a drainage ravine down to the river bank.  We’d often see people with their dogs walking down that way, so decided to go see where it went.

didn’t fall down this time

Then we took another path along the bank and came out at a riffle/weir.  Very pretty!  The water level is quite low right now so we were able to walk out quite a ways.


Saw a float plane take off and land a few times!

float plane

It’s the Giant Bike Gang!

A lovely evening.

looking east from the kayak club dock in the west end

I’ve been playing around with the settings on my new camera and the fisheye:

not Ava’s best look!


Secret Knitting Revealed

The two projects I had been working on of late have been delivered to their recipients, so now I can show them here!

First pair of socks was a chart I’d made up on my own.  It’s supposed to be sheep …

sheep? eh, whatever

I used some black Sisu I had on hand, and the Regia is a newer colourway in the Fluormania line. Ravelry project page is here.  I like the black background with a brighter contrast colour, but man, is that Sisu splitty yarn.

The other ones were made with some lovely Sweet Georgia Yarn “Tough Love Sock Yarn” in two shades of purple:

I made three-round stripes of the two shades of purple

The Ravelry project page is here.  These were a second try at getting custom-fitted socks for a friend.  He says they fit perfectly, so that’s good to hear.  Project notes made for the future!



After our Summit Run, the next day we didn’t feel like having a too-active “active recovery” Sunday Funday.  Plus the weather wasn’t the nicest.  We decided to go have a look at Wanuskewin Heritage Park.  It would have been ideal if we could have gotten outside and walked the trails and seen all the outdoor exhibits.  But it was raining too hard.


buffalo display

One of the art exhibits they had was one by Patricia Ningewance.  Her work is stunning:


the photo doesn’t capture the gorgeous colours and textures of this piece

There are more photos in the flickr album here.


sculpture outside (as we were leaving)

This is definitely on our “go again” list for this summer.  So much history and such beautiful grounds to discover.


Still skating …

Even though I have taken the season off from officiating roller derby, my skates are still getting a lot of use.  As we try to have an “active recovery” day mid week, we have been out skating a few evenings.  It’s so convenient to have the trail so close to home.


Bill and I

I still gear up. I went out for an afternoon skate with one of my former league-mates and I didn’t wear my protective gear. I ended up with a sore back from being so rigid and afraid to fall.

danielle skate

“it won’t rain …”

This was after we also got hailed on.  We went the entire east-to-west length of the trail and back, about 10 miles.  The city tells us they’re going to finish the final 1.5 km of the trail so it completely circumnavigates the city.  This year.  Ha ha ha.  Sure, they will.  It’s inconvenient to skate the entire loop because there is a section where we have to be on surface streets instead of the nicely paved path. It’s okay to bike that way, but not skate.

Fort Carlton

As part of our Sunday Funday aka “active recovery” days, we decided to drive somewhere, take a ferry, and see something.  We packed a big cooler full of good eats and hit the road in the van.  Gorgeous sunny day, not too hot.  I had looked up Fort Carlton and the website I saw said it was open.  We took a circuitous route which involved a ferry, a religious shrine (detoured) and the Fort.  Which wasn’t open on weekends after all (not until July).  Hmmpht.


but I want IN!

Such a beautiful valley near the river.


looking west-ish

We explored what we could at the Fort, then had our delicious picnic lunch before heading out again.  We decided to not follow the map and just drove to see where the road went.  We got to the pretty much abandoned hamlet of Carlton nearby.  More pics are in the album here.  We walked around.  Interesting, but eerie.  We took a few turns here and there and ended up coming out at Rosthern.  So we stopped and had a look at the visitor center (closed).


handstands everywhere!

Did some light deadlifts.


Red River Cart Deadlifts

We then stopped at the Valley Regional Park to give the zip line a try (and have a pee).


a little more rustic than the Elk Ridge one, but fun all the same

And we stopped in at Duck Lake and had a look at Russell Hanson’s museum.  Really interesting stop to make. We drive past it all the time; I’m glad we had a look.  We plan to do more of these little day trips throughout the summer.

Bike Festival

On June 5, there was a bike relay/music festival at one of our favourite local parks.  Some of the girls from the gym were going and I decided to join their team.  My bike wasn’t suitable for trail riding, but because it was a relay, only one team member at a time was on the trail.  So I borrowed one.

awkward bike photo

part of our team with our coach Janet

It was a nice day, not too hot, broken cloud.  We did get a shower later in the afternoon, but it didn’t last long.  The “lap” was 6 km long, through the park’s hiking and xc ski trails.  It was a lot of fun and a great day outside.

On my first lap I did have some technical difficulty with a portion of the trail:

biffed it Pine Needle

It was fun and reminded me how much I like biking.  So the next day I traded in my cruiser/beach bike on one more suitable for this sort of riding!

Giant Roam 3 ready to ride!

Giant Roam 3 ready to ride!

It will be suitable for both our trails and the bike path in town.  Such a pleasure to ride!

Still can’t reveal my latest knitting projects, but soon!