Jura Creek

Jura Creek is the last drainage north of the highway and east of Canmore I’ve yet to explore.  As the weather today was warm but snowfall prohibits climbing too high, it seemed like a great day to explore some low elevation terra incognito.

Dave’s Law of Creek Exploration:

Decision liquidity is inversely proportional to efficiency.

What this law means is that the easier it is to wade across a creek, the more likely you will find yourself on the wrong side!

Jura Creek was flowing rather well as mountain run off started yesterday.  This meant the canyons were full of water forcing me to splash from bank to bank as cliffs continually blocked the way. 

Above: the lower canyon was too dangerous choked with ice so I had to climb a hundred meters up and around.

Once I detoured the first canyon, it was pleasant rambling over the meandering creek.  Various ages of old streambeds were in different stages of colonizing vegetation.  The east side of the creek was smooth, tilted Palliser limestone while the west bank was gravels and shales making an interesting contrast.  Above: smooth meets coarse. Iron oxides brighten the rock.  For all but a few days a year, this creek bed is totally dry.

The end of my exploration was the “false fault” which had too much water over it too safely continue.  At this deep “V” several significant rock groups all meet.

The Exshaw formation contains wonderfully black shales with interesting fossils aplenty.  The best ones are at the base of the formation but were submerged by water.  The entire waterfall was on an interesting angle due to the strike and dip of the Palliser rock it spills over.  Above:  The stream flows over multiple angles and down an inclined edge.  This very unique waterfall only exists during spring thaw.  Above: water froths over iron intrusions

Above: water is nearly indistinguishable from rock

Above: On the way out I made a quick recon up Doorjam Mt. and found this Alpine Cinquefoil in bloom on a south-facing rock.

Above:  Always amazing clouds and winds where the Front Range meets the prairies.  The prairies begin at the base of the mountain on the left known as Prairieview Mt.

Jura Creek was a great hidden jewel off the radar.  After my brief recon, I think I’ll come back to climb Doorjam and Loder Peak with Suz in the fall.

I collected a few GPS points with my SPOT beacon

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3 Responses to Jura Creek

  1. Looks like a great little excursion. I love the areas where the geology is all jumbled like that. Looks like the weather really cooperated, too.

    Things are looking up for a potential trip in August. I’ve got to put in for some holiday hours. I’ll keep you posted.

  2. Kevin says:

    I think another ramble is due for potential Black Swift nesting sites!

  3. dave says:

    Hey that’s great news Mike!

    I looked for nests in the lower canyon which seemed like great habitat but found nothing. The search goes on!

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