So many people to thank for this terrific honour. Thanks to @gregfarries , Rose & Ryan at the @PrairiePostAlta , Liza Dawber & Vulcan County, and of course my wife and best friend, Amanda. This couldn’t have happened without your support. #ABheritage #ABforum14 #canadianbadlands #Alberta #history
In 2003, my beloved Calgary Flames embarked on a season that would end one victory short of a Stanley Cup championship. A return to playoff form this season seems, well, very unlikely.
Ten years ago, the province of Alberta was on the verge of becoming debt-free, and would record a $2 billion budgetary surplus. Ten years later, not so much.
For the first settlers of southeastern Alberta, the contrast between 1916 and 1926 was also striking.
Following consecutive above-average harvests in 1915-16, a casual observer might have concluded that the region was on its way to becoming the economic powerhouse of the province.
Ten years later, the southeast was verging on economic and societal collapse. Settlers were leaving the land in droves after a decade of drought and extreme natural events strained the resolve of even the hardiest homesteaders.
Nowhere was the change in fortune more evident than in the former Kinnondale district, situated in northeastern Vulcan County.
After a two year hiatus, our fourth Forgotten Alberta road trip was underway. Following an evening of revelry with hosts Mike & Karin (and cousin Steve), myself and my wheel-man Greg headed out from Brooks on the morning of August 17th to see what we could see. Running from Alderson to Armada in one day, I proceeded to fall in every badger hole in Alderson and marveled at the “Pleasantville on the Prairie” at Ralston. Along the way we saw the birds and antelope play, wandered aimlessly through the Hays Maze, and got our bells rung at Retlaw (United Church). By the time we hit Armada I ran out of steam, just in time for the smoke to roll in.
While I’d love to tell you about it, 23 pictures are roughly the equivalent of a thousand words. Take a look.