Trapping sign on BC side of Elk Pass

Trapping sign on BC side of Elk Pass

Cowardly, insecure, inadequate men with expensive snowmobiles and weapons lookin’ to kill trophy wolves. Wow, they must be proud!

The trail to Elk Lakes cabin in BC near the top of Elk Pass

The trail to Elk Lakes cabin in BC near the top of Elk Pass

A few metres from the Elk Pass picnic table, the cruelty of human beings is being manifested in the barbaric practice of trapping not just wolves, but any unsuspecting animal, perhaps a cougar, lynx, bobcat, fox, coyote, or even an eagle or raven.

If you ski from the top of Elk Pass under the powerline into BC(the route to Elk Lakes cabin), you’ll see the disturbing signs of the depraved killers proudly displayed within the first 100 metres.

When I took the photo a few weeks ago, there were snowmobile tracks everywhere on the BC side.

The top of Elk Pass looking into British Columbia

The top of Elk Pass looking into British Columbia

The BC trappers set their instruments of torture close to the border because they know the wolves do not respect any boundaries, and are attracted by the smelly bait.

The trapped wolf endures a painful and panic-filled wait until they either die from exhaustion, blood loss, dehydration, hypothermia, or are clubbed, choked or stomped to death by the trapper (so as not to damage the pelt).

Alternatively, it’s been well-documented that animals have chewed their foot off to escape a trap.

"A grinning trapper striking a pose beside his catch, a live 100-pound wolf in northern Idaho. The wolf is coal-black and appears to be hobbling around a ring of blood-stained snow, its leg caught in a foot-hold trap." The trapper's name is Josh Bransford and incredibly, he is an employee of Idaho's Dept. of Fish and Game

A grinning trapper striking a pose beside his catch, a live 100-pound wolf in northern Idaho. The wolf is coal-black and appears to be hobbling around a ring of blood-stained snow, its leg caught in a foot-hold trap. The trapper’s name is Josh Bransford. It’s rumoured that bystanders with rifles used the wolf for target practice, consequently all the blood.

The Peter Lougheed Provincial Park wolves are protected from hunting and trapping while in the park, but if they step one foot over the provincial boundary, it’s open season on the BC side.

In Alberta, we have no reason to be indignant because the same thing happens every day in our province on the outskirts of Banff National Park, and in all unprotected areas of the province. I will give Alberta credit for protecting the area known as Spray Valley Provincial Park in 2003 which we pass through on our way to PLPP. It’s one less place where wolves can be killed. The alpha female of the Peter Lougheed pack was shot in that area by an elk hunter in 2000 before it was protected.

“Traditions” such as trapping belong on the ash heap, right next to slavery, dog fighting, and other activities that were once considered an acceptable part of people’s heritage.

How would you describe the look on Josh Bransford’s face? What personality disorder would it take for a man to do this, and take pleasure in it? You can read more about this incident Idaho wolf trapper. The most disturbing element of this whole story is that everything he did is legal. 

Despite being banned by many countries around the world, as well as Florida, Rhode Island, New Jersey and Arizona, the leg-hold trap is still legal in every province and territory in Canada (only leg-holds with ‘teeth’ have been prohibited).

I’d like to hope that the Alberta NDP government would take a new approach to managing our wildlife. Leg-hold traps have no place in a civilized, compassionate society, and should be banned.


First hike on the Highline trail at Canmore

April 19, 2016
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Amazing conditions for this time of year. Tessa and I were surprised at how dry the trail was.

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Chuck says Lake O’Hara is still a go

April 14, 2016

Trip Report from Chuck submitted on April 13: “With 3 cms of fresh velvety snow on top of a solid base, Lake O’Hara was a great choice today.” Chuck thought he saw a grizzly

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One last chance

April 10, 2016

Sunday Apr 10 @ 8:30 a.m: PLPP tracksetter Jody groomed a number of trails in the south end last night including Elk Pass, Tyrwhitt, Blueberry Hill, and Hydroline. Jody reports the temperature at Elk Pass this morning is -1, and there was a bit

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Spring skiing at its best

April 7, 2016
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I feel blessed to have been able to ski the Tyrwhitt loop one more time on surprisingly good conditions. After seeing this morning’s Live Grooming Report, I couldn’t resist.

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Do you believe in climate change?

April 6, 2016

“Predicting disaster can be a profitable business and a path to speech-making celebrity.” Despite getting off to a great start this winter, we’ve experienced two consecutive ski seasons where the snow has not been “what we could expect”

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Kevin is almost at 20,000K

April 3, 2016

(I was thrilled to get this email from Kevin. I remember the day well. It was cold and the snow and tracksetting were marvelous.) Skier Bob: We met on Sunday November 29 in the Ribbon Creek parking lot. I’m one of the “three amigos” from Downtown Nordic in Winnipeg. I’m the one with the mess […]

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Caption contest: You know it’s spring when…

April 1, 2016

What’s significant, as it pertains to spring skiing, about these photos? Add your caption in the comments. Some are obvious, like the girl skiing in a tank top,

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Elk Pass for the final time

March 30, 2016
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I thought 10:30 a.m. was early, but it wasn’t early enough. In fact, I don’t know if it even froze last night.

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PLPP north

March 29, 2016
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I hadn’t skied Lodgepole and Braille yet this winter, so when I saw they were groomed last night, I headed there today.

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Significant snowfall expected

March 27, 2016

It’s been a while since we’ve seen one of these… The Snow Forecast is predicting 14 cm in PLPP. Lost and Found Update: Skis have been returned to Rob, thanks to all involved! If anyone finds these skis, give Rob a call:

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Easter Bridge Hunt

March 26, 2016

With the lack of snow, I’ve certainly missed the Ribbon Creek tracksetting updates for the past two months, so I was glad to hear from Ribbon Creek Tracksetter Jeff, even if it was about a new bridge. Jeff didn’t divulge the location, preferring to keep

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Excellent on new grooming…and before 2 pm

March 25, 2016
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-Nola and Geoff on Tyrwhitt. – I was on the trail at 10:30 this morning and had lovely cold snow

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Looks can be deceiving

March 22, 2016
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The snow in these photos looks magnificent, but truthfully, it’s wet, except on Lower Telemark where it was icy.

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A nice day for socializing

March 19, 2016
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-Inga, Vivian and Skipper were on their way to do some winter camping- Thanks for all the Trip Reports. With limited options these days, it’s very helpful

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Epic day in PLPP

March 18, 2016
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You’ve read the enthusiastic Trip Reports. It was indeed a terrific day on the south trails in PLPP. I might still be out there if I hadn’t run out of water.

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Skiing at its best!

March 17, 2016
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-Paige and Mike from New Hampshire were enjoying stellar conditions on Fairview- If ever there was a case to be made for playing hookie from work, this is it.

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Now that was fun!

March 16, 2016
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What a pleasure to be skiing on cold snow again. I see from the Trip Reports that I wasn’t the only one who got to enjoy blue wax today.

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Lovely day in PLPP

March 13, 2016
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You can ski in daylight ’til well after 8 pm now, so my updates will be getting even later! I was thrilled to see all the tracksetting that was done in PLPP last night.

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Norwegian Sundby wins Ski Tour Canada

March 12, 2016
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Congratulations to Martin Johnsrud Sundby of Norway for winning first place in the inaugural Ski Tour Canada. Canadian Alex Harvey put on a good show for his home country with a fifth.

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