We’re well into Day 3 of the June 2013 flood in Calgary. There have been so many amazing, heart-breaking, inspiring, eye-popping (running out of adjectives here) images and stories shared via Twitter (#yycflood) and through the local media that I seriously debated whether to add to the deluge of images and other observations.
Ultimately, I decided to go ahead with this post because for more than 5 years, this blog has been my digital journal, where I’ve blended pictures and words to keep a record of our hiking, biking and other adventures. And this flood definitely qualifies as an adventure – “an unusual and exciting,…hazardous…experience.”
Sitting safe and sound in west Calgary, it’s pretty much impossible to imagine what the past 3 or 4 days have been like for those in the flood zone. Since Thursday, hundreds of thousands of southern Albertans have evacuated their homes, many with very little notice. As the flood waters recede and conditions permit, City of Calgary officials are gradually allowing families to return home. Some homes are gone entirely, washed away in the turbulent currents. Others will require extensive remediation and repair. I expect it that for those hardest hit, it will take months (or maybe even years) for things to return to “normal”.
Yesterday we set out to get a first-hand look at some parts of the city. City officials have repeatedly asked Calgarians to stay off the roads, to leave them clear for the first responders who are working so hard to keep everyone safe and minimize the flood damage. So we hopped on our bikes, stuck to back streets, and stayed on high ground, well away from any evacuation zones. Our first stop was the top section of Edworthy Park, where we watched the filthy, raging Bow River flowing towards downtown Calgary. Sun angle and haze combined to defeat our attempts to create good photographs, so I resorted to using the “key line” filter to get a few images…
We rode all through North Glenmore Park, stopping at the east end to look across towards Heritage Park and up towards the Glenmore Trail causeway, which crosses the Reservoir.