Dave McMurray

My name is Dave McMurray and I’m the proud owner of a gorilla suit.  I’ve had it for a few years now and it’s a ‘Bucket List’ item that I’ve successfully been able to check off – and use on more occasions than I’d like to admit!  At the end of the day, that’s probably all you need to know about me, but on the off chance you want to know a bit more, then you’re welcome to keep reading.

I was privileged to grow up within the traditional territories of the people of the Treaty 7 region – the  Siksikaitsitapi, the Tsuut’ina, and the Stoney Nakoda – on land that included two spring creeks, the Elbow River, and spectacular views of the Rockies.  Most of my youth was spent outside exploring, fly fishing, and imagining.  As an adult, I’ve been able to channel my passion for outdoor pursuits into my academic research as an historian (gender and the sport of angling in Britain and North America) and into various other roles such as being a camp leader and a coach.

Now that my own family is older, the opportunities for me to explore nature, and linger within it, have increased.  Just as others look forward to a round of golf on their day off, I look forward to standing in a stream or hiking up the side of a mountain.  For me, this type of recreation has always been re-creation.  Indeed, I’m thankful that my family supports this and participates alongside of me.  My hope is that my adult kids (where did the time go? 😳), will continue to live with a healthy sense of risk, wonder, and passion for the world out-of-doors, and in turn, pass this on to their own families.

I’m also keenly aware that there is nothing new under the sun and so I’m grateful to those who have summited hundreds of peaks, fished a plethora of waters, and have freely shared the details of their journeys either online or in print – there are some amazing websites and blogs out there!  I won’t ever accomplish what they have, nor will I try.  My modest goal is to summit a minimum of 10 to 12 peaks a year, which for some is a monthly feat, while for others, it’s an accomplishment that takes several years.  For me and the time that I have to invest, it’s an objective that fits well.

Ultimately, this blog represents my attempt to capture and then translate these outdoor experiences into a journal that will one day help me remember the nuances of each trip.  Outside of this, my hope is that it will provide family, friends, and the occasional wanderer with an incidental laugh, insight, or tidbit of useful information.  If it inspires any of the aforementioned to go play outside and/or discover a renewed love for the land, even better!  In all likelihood however, it will stagnate somewhere in the realm of delusion, as a privileged, fifty-something male attempts to convince himself and others that he still clings to the fleeting days of his youth.

Disclaimer: Hiking and scrambling are inherently dangerous activities. I am not a professional or certified mountain guide and cannot in any way, guarantee the safety, accuracy, or reliability of my trip reports.  If you decide to use any of the route descriptions, information, or content found on this site, you do so completely at your own risk and liability. You also assume full responsibility for your actions, choices, and judgements. Do not rely on any information or content from this site for your own personal safety or for the safety of others.

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A hairy situation on Mount Carthew.


  1. Hello Dave. I have read with interest an article you wrote, regarding Mt McCarty near Beaver Mines, Alberta. Any chance you recall seeing any fish rising there?

    1. Hi Donald, I just replied to almost the same question from Darren on the Mount McCarty post, so hopefully that answer helps. Those shallow mountain lakes can be hit and miss. Tons of food but they lack the safety of the drop off and the depth for long winters. If you end up fishing it, let me know!

      1. I thankyou. My observations and experience mirror this. I found your blog and we were both very curious, as we like quirky places, to fish and hike.

  2. Hello Dave. I am a fly fisherman in Lethbridge and I am going to rainy ridge lakes in a few weeks. Looking at your website about your hike up last year you had a lot of success fishing these lakes. I was wondering what fly you were using and if it would bring me success. If you could let me know that would be great. Thanks

  3. Great stuff Dave, we have similar ambitions of remote mountains in the Flathead. Let me know if you are ever looking for a capable partner!

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