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Mount Ware Hike

Mount Ware Hike


We took on the challenge of hiking Mount Ware this last weekend on our Annual Daddy/Daughter hike.  Because we are not big hikers (more like couch potatoes, if one was telling the truth) this mountain not only tested us physically, but mentally as well.
Mt Ware Hike-hiker doing a creek crossing   Mt Ware Hike-hiker on trail
Mount Ware was named in 1951 after John Ware, an African American cowboy and pioneer.  John Ware is best remembered for being the first man to bring cattle into Southern Alberta.  His hard work and good nature made him one of the most well respected figures in Western Canadian history.  John played a pivotal role in Alberta’s ranching industry.   Legend says this fearless cowboy had the ability to train and ride wild horses; and that he was never bucked off a horse.   Ware is even said to have inspired steer wrestling, a popular sporting event on display at the Calgary Stampede.

Mt Ware Hike-Summit view from the trail   Mt Ware Hike-Summit image

According to the database over at, Mount Ware rings in as the 1088th highest mountain in Alberta and 3903rd highest in Canada.  Its summit elevation is 6,950 feet high, with an elevation gain of 2789 feet.  Yup, we were feeling the burn!

Mt Ware Hike-Gorge Creek Alberta 3

Our hike started off with an easy-going meander along beautiful Gorge Creek.  The path trickled slowly through gorgeous green meadows filled with wildflowers and ground squirrels.  We were enjoying each other’s company and the lavish surroundings.  Not even the thunderous rumble of storm clouds echoing off the adjacent mountains could deter us, as we pushed deep into the Sheep River valley.

Mt Ware Hike-Gorge Creek Alberta (2)

Mt Ware Hike-wildflowers black eyed susan

Mt Ware Hike-wild flowers

We kept an eye out for any fellow travellers and wildlife we might bump into.

Mt Ware Hike-white tail buck in velvet   Mt Ware Hike-bear track vs hand comparison  Mt Ware Hike-bear track in the mud  Mt Ware Hike-2 mating butterfly

When we finally located the marker pointing up the mountain toward our ultimate goal, our couch potato legs seemed to kick in.  Tired but hopeful, we pushed ourselves up the well-worn trail, stopping frequently to catch our breath and question what we were doing.   The path was steep and demanding.  Numerous times we almost lost the fight to continue; Mount Ware seemed almost too big for our soft, out of shape bodies to handle.

Mt Ware Hike trail marker

Mt Ware Hike-Summit view from the trail with hiker

Mt Ware summit assent hikers

At one point we stopped and had a big family conference.  We drew strength from each other, reminding ourselves that we had come all this way.  If we gave up now we would kick ourselves for not finishing it. So as a team we stubbornly dug in our heels and decided that we could do this thing.  Nobody gets to quit!

Mt Ware Hike-Family at the summit

As if big John Ware himself was climbing the steep trail with us, you could almost sense the mountain encouraging us to work hard and find our own inner strengths.  We forged ahead to the summit and on to Victory!

Mt Ware Hike-Hiker hands up I did it!

I absolutely love moments like this!   It was so magnificent watching the evolution of my family. To see each one of them push through their belief that they couldn’t do it, and stand on top of the world with their arms up shouting “I did it!  I was here!”  I loved seeing their faces as they looked down at the crazy path we had just taken; knowing they didn’t give up or quit, and that if we applied this same principle to our lives we would succeed!

Mount Ware Becky and Vannah  Mount Ware Inukshuk  Mount Ware Nat and Vannah

For me,  this day trip was a good reminder that no man is an island.  We all need the strength and encouragement of others sometimes to flourish and thrive; and that there is a real difference between proving you can do something, as opposed to saying you can do it.

Mt Ware Hike-Hiker arms up I did it!

Although the next day we were back to being couch potatoes, for a brief moment in time my family stood on the shoulders of greatness and owned a mountain called Mount Ware.

Fitbit info

Total Steps:  30,642

Calories burned: 3646

Distance walked: 13.90 Miles/ 20 Km

Flights of stairs: 238

Total time to complete:  7 hours

Trail Head info: Best located with Gillean Daffern’s Kananaskis Country Trail Guide book.  

Or click here to see a map listing for Mount Ware Hike.

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View of Moraine lakes deep blue colour from the rock pile

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