Dan Welyk Calgary Realtor® Since 1999

There Is No Substitute for Experience.

Special K and Pneuma Loop

So after doing a couple easy walks/hikes up Johnson Canyon and up to the Ink Pots we decided to be a little more adventurous  and do a big loop.  


Starting off at Station Flats just west of Allan Bill Pond (now known as just Allan Bill because that makes sense?) and went up Tom Snow to meet up with Special K, the downhill mountain bike track.  This is a really nice hike, does have some elevation to it but not overly hard.  


Special K

Special K Downhill Bike track Just below the "Wet Pants" bridge


The scenery in this area is amazing this time of year and really looking forward to going back maybe late May or early June to see the water running.  If you hike this, definitely recommend you look into trail etiquette when hiking a bike trail.  We never came across any bikes but I would imagine they are coming at a pretty fast speed and they won't expect you on the trail - so move out of the way.


Dan and Lisa Welyk on Special K

Lisa and I Just before the Snow


When we left the parking lot, we were expecting some rain - however part way up - the rain was snow.  As we inclined, we realized this path has not been traveled yet this year and we had to break trail.  


Hiking Special K Bike TrackJust as we hit the snow level


Some parts of the trail were extremely icy - like on the other side of this bridge.  Despite having micro-spikes, we had a difficult time getting up some of the more steep sections.  


Tromping Through Snow on Special K

Snow is getting thicker here


It was about this point in the hike the girls were questioning my trail picking and reading skills.  They wondered what part of "DownHill Bike Track" I thought would be an easy hike.  


Jump on Special K


...And it was about this point they started to question my map reading ability.  Lisa suggests she's going to take a map reading course - I explain that I'm actually very proficient in map reading - I just chose to not look at the elevation because it wasn't really that high.  Big mistake.  She wasn't happy I just ignored the elevation part.  The girls razzed me quite a bit up here - which is normal - we're always "friends off" on the way up.  "Friends on" on the way down.


At the Special K trail head


So as they emerge from the forest and had to tromp through about 40cm of snow, they were a little grouchy with me.  But, we're at the top so it's all good.  Unfortunately we are in a bit of a blizzard.  Time for lunch behind the trees!


All the complaining aside, it was actually really fun.  They pick on me all the time when hiking no matter what elevation we do.  


We hiked down Pnuema which was really beautiful with the fresh snowfall.  Pneuma runs along Moose Mountain Road for some time and we eventually hooked onto Sulphur Springs to take us back to Station Flats.


Pneuma Trail in the snow


Sulphur Springs is another hike I really would like to see in the later part of the Spring.  Though didn't take a picture because it was snowing really heavy and didn't have protection for my camera, it was beautiful in there.  


In total, the hike was 22.3km and I highly recommend for a long day hike.  Just be very aware you're on a designated bike trail for parts.


I wanted to follow up on my review of the micro-spikes from my previous post.  Now understanding again the Yaktrax and the DueNorth products are not specifically designed for hiking but one would think they would hold up better than they did.  The Yaktrax slipped off the boot at some point in the hike and was lost.  This was a concern I had in my review.  Major failure.  The Due north lost 50% of the spikes which made some parts of the hike a bit challenging.  I don't recommend buying either of those unless you're in a pinch.


The Kahtoola micro spikes performed amazing.  Well worth the extra money.  After washing them up, they look pretty much like new.






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