Welcome to the second instalment of Hike365’s Quiet Days + Cool Nights: Recipes + Shoulder Season Adventures in the Alberta Rockies. If you missed part one, head over there now!
This time we went south to Beaver Mines Lake Campground for a beautiful day hike up Table Mountain in the Castle Crown Area, beers at a local watering hole + a bowl of warm coconut salmon curry for dinner!
Beaver Mines Lake Provincial Recreation Area is located about 2.5 hours from Calgary and boasts a campground with lakeside, lakeview + forested sites. They are open from May 6th until October 16th! Nearby Pincher Creek has a number of grocery stores to fill your cooler up at + the Beaver Mines Gas station sells ice, beer and a variety of sundries as well.
Prep the ingredients for our One Pot Salmon Coconut Curry ahead of time (recipe is at the end of this post!) and you will be one happy hiker come dinner!
The Table Mountain trail head is only minutes from the the campground and you can walk there directly from your campsite.
Camping at Beaver Mines Lake + hiking Table Mountain is a wonderfully relaxed experience thanks to the reduced number of cars on the highway compared to heading to Banff or up the Icefields Parkway. The lowered amount of hikers on the trail made for a quiet day (plus or minus a marmot or two!) Allow for a bit of extra travel time + drive Alberta’s historic Cowboy Trail part of the way, making sure to grab some famous beef jerky in Longview + make a pit stop at the famous Lundbreck Falls.
Hiking Table Mountain is a unique experience, with a panoramic vista of the high peaks of the continental divide to one side + the prairies transforming into foothills + mountains on the other, you will not be disappointed with this hike!
We also encountered a marmot sunning himself on a rock near the high point + he was happy to pose for a few photos! Check out Vern Dewitt’s Trip Report for Table Mountain. It includes directions and full trail details, you’ll notice he did this hike in November! Check out our GPS track video HERE
With over 850m of elevation gain in just under 11km you can expect to fill a half day on the trail, giving you enough time to head to Stella’s Pub in Beaver Mines for a beer and snack afterwards! Pop on over to TravelAlberta.com for full details on Southern Alberta, trip planning tips including itineraries + travel offers!
Keep an eye out for the unique artwork that decorates their space. Made by the owners, each piece is made from rhubarb leaves and concrete!
Stella’s also doubles as a B+B, so if camping in October isn’t your thing, snag a room at this cozy spot! If you want to treat yourself; their delicious fish + chips are baked instead of fried and worth the wait!
*you have probably noticed that our photos are from summer. This trip can also be done in shoulder season! Please check avalanche conditions prior to heading out on the trail no matter the season! If you are getting out there to play in areas that avalanches are possible, make sure to take an avalanche skills training course(s) to recognize the hazards involved with winter mountain travel.
Simple One Pot Salmon Coconut Curry
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20-25 minutes
Feeds 2-4 dependent on how hungry you are!
1 cup of canned coconut milk or 1 cup of reconstituted powdered coconut milk
1 can of skinless boneless salmon
1-2 green onions/scallions
1 medium shallot
1 garlic clove
1 thumb sized piece of fresh ginger (peeled)
1 small sweet potato
1 small carrot
1 veggie bouillon cube or 1 cup of veggie stock
2 tbsp curry powder
1tbsp coconut oil
Mince up your shallot, garlic + ginger, set aside.
Peel + dice your sweet potato + carrot into small pieces (the smaller they are the faster they will cook), set aside.
Slice up your green onions + set aside for garnish.
Warm a non stick pot with coconut oil to medium. Once heated add in your shallot, garlic + ginger, cooking until fragrant,
Add in 3/4’s of your curry powder, lower heat and stir to coat veggies.
Add in your sweet potato + carrots, stir to coat.
Add in your salmon. Don’t drain the can; adding this liquid to the pot will help increase flavour!
Pour in 1 cup of veggie stock, followed by 1 cup of coconut milk. Stir it all together, reduce to a simmer and cover.
Give it a taste after about 15 minutes in, adding the remaining curry if desired.
Once your veggies are cooked to your liking (usually about 15-20 minutes), dish up the curry, top with green onions and enjoy!