Located near the entrance to the Little Elbow Recreation Area, the pond is one of the most spectacular scenes in Kananaskis due to its proximity to the Rocky Mountains which forms a panoramic backdrop when viewed from the eastern end of the pond. Forgetmenot escaped the worst of the flood of 2013, although the nice gravel path that surrounded it got a bit torn up with the surface gravel washed away and the landscape fabric underneath revealed.
Otherwise the 30 or so picnic tables and some firepits remain in place. The modern style outdoor toilet and the parking lot are intact. The concern is that with Allen Bill and Elbow Falls virtually gone as day use recreation locations, there will be a rush of people vying for tables and parking places for their family outing.
The Little Elbow Interpretive Trail nearby didn’t fair so well. It is gone. Also the footbridge over the river to the Big Elbow/Little Elbow loop was closed, but appears to be open again. Another closure in the area is the Forgetmenot Trail, a dirt road linking Little Elbow to Highway 68. As of 2017, some facilities and access have been restored.
One of the unofficial, uncharted hidden gems is the flat land along the shoreline about a kilometre before you get to Little Elbow on Highway 66. It’s a little too close to the highway to be “hidden”, but it offers a great view of the Rockies.
Forgetmenot Pond is the only place where I’ve seen anything like a crowd of people. There were a few empty tables by the pond in early August, but a stretch of good weather could change that. I also noticed a lot of empty campsites in the adjacent campground. As more people return to the valley there are going to be pressure points – Forgetmenot is one.
Scuba divers use the pond to develop their skills. The pond isn’t too deep, but there are some artifacts on the bottom that divers like to explore. One is a plaque dedicated to a Calgary police officer, an avid scuba diver, who was killed in the line of duty.
Little Elbow Provincial Recreation Area Map
Click to enlarge.