Update: A copy of the Majorville Landscape Management Plan, prepared in March 2012, was submitted to Vulcan County Council for review on March 4. Click here to read more.
Late in 2014, Hanna-area farmer, Gottlob Schmidt, known as “Schmitty”, became a celebrity of sorts after it was announced he had donated of 940 acres (380 hectares) of his own land to be established as Antelope Hill Provincial Park. Situated on undisturbed native grassland, Antelope Hill is not yet open to the public, as Mr. Schmidt still resides there, part-time anyway, on the farm his family has owned since 1933. However, at some point in the future the park will be opened, with opportunities for low-impact day-use being made available to the public, including hiking, nature appreciation and wildlife viewing.
The announcement is significant, not only because of Schmitty’s uncommon foresight and generosity; but also because Antelope Hill is the first provincial park to be created in southeastern Alberta in almost 50 years, the last being Tillebrook (between Tilley and Brooks) in 1965.
According to Dr. Schmitt, all that remains of the “Bow City Crater” today is “a semicircular depression eight kilometres across with a central peak”. However, evidence suggests that a meteor strike within the last 70 million years left a crater that was initally eight-kilometres wide, 1.6 to 2.4 km deep, and produced an explosion “strong enough to destroy present-day Calgary”.
“An impact of this magnitude would kill everything for quite a distance,” stated the professor in a UofA media release. “If it happened today, Calgary (200 km to the northwest) would be completely fried and in Edmonton (500 km northwest), every window would have been blown out. Something of that size, throwing that much debris in the air, potentially would have global consequences; there could have been ramifications for decades.”
In an interview with Calgary Herald’s Colette Derworiz, Dr. Schmitt described the site of the discovery, a vast expanse of grazing lease and farm land about 30 miles southwest of Brooks as: “…probably one of the most boring places. It’s beautiful, but it’s flatline and in that sense it’s quite boring.”
As it turns out, I happened to spend a considerable chunk of my youth living a few miles west of this beautiful, boring and flatline place; on a farm situated in an area formerly known as Kinnondale.
Kinnondale isn’t the end of the world, but you can see what it might look like from there.
A media release from the University of Alberta has reported the discovery of “an ancient ring-like structure in southern Alberta”.
Situated “near the southern Alberta hamlet of Bow City“, it is speculated the impact site was struck by a meteorite large enough to leave an eight-kilometre-wide crater.
The impact site was discovered by a geologist with the Alberta Geological Survey, Paul Glombick, and studied by a U of A team led by Doug Schmitt, Canada Research Chair in Rock Physics.
According to researchers from the Alberta Geological Survey and University of Alberta, the impact would have produced an explosion strong enough to destroy present-day Calgary:
“An impact of this magnitude would kill everything for quite a distance,” [said Doug Schmitt]. “If it happened today, Calgary (200 km to the northwest) would be completely fried and in Edmonton (500 km northwest), every window would have been blown out. Something of that size, throwing that much debris in the air, potentially would have global consequences; there could have been ramifications for decades.”
Having picked up various tidbits of info on what has been referred to as the “Bow City structure” over the years, I believe the impact site is more accurately situated in the Kinnondale district, located west of the present-day hamlet of Bow City.
In the days to come I am going to do my level best to seek out the epicentre of the Bow City meteor strike, which may or may not be within sight of Kinnondale, Alberta.
Six on the list features two older photos taken in the former Kinnondale district of northeast Vulcan County. The first is entitled “Along the road to Amethyst (2010)” a reference to a former school district and post office once located north of Hwy. 539. The photo below, “The Lunt Place (2007)”, is the former homestead of Joseph and Annie Lunt, who helped found and sustain the Kinnondale community during three decades of drought and hardship. The Lunts left Kinnondale in 1953.