Page 1

FREE

EXPERIENCE 2017/2018

FREE

Calgary’s Parks ‘n’ Paths

19 Helpful Map Pages Kananaskis Country Campground Directory Edworthy Park Sikome Lake Bike Trails

Reader Contests


the Best Loved Travel Guides in Western Canada!

Photo Courtesy of Christine Newman

FREE

EXPERIENCE 2017/2018

FREE

Calgary’s Parks ‘n’ Paths

Helpful Map Pages

FREE

EXPERIENCE 2017/2018

The Dinosaur Trails

7 Helpful Map Pages “Scotty” the T. rex So you wanna be a Dino Hunter

The Northern Trails Golf Gems Campground Directory

FREE

FREE

EXPERIENCE 2017/2018

FREE

The Mountain Parks

Photo & Selfie Contests

EXPERIENCE 2017/2018

FREE

The Cowboy Trails

Travel Guide to Western Canada

20 Helpful Map Pages Canada’s 150th Heritage Tours Hidden Gems New Attractions Campground Directory Icefields Parkway

Reader Contests

FREE

Photo & Selfie Contests

11 Helpful Map Pages

Fabulous Foods Kananaskis on Horse back Art Tour Rodeos & Pow Wows Farmers Markets

Reader Contests

View our mobile editions and enter our contests at ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Enter to Win Your name will be entered in a draw for an Engraved Fieldstone, courtesy of the Ranche at Fish Creek Restoration Society. Valued at $500, your prize will be featured in the Native Gardens and placed next to the Gazebo. Learn more about the Engraved Fieldstone program at bowvalleyranche.com You are reading the fifth edition of Experience Calgary’s Parks ‘n’ Paths. We’d like to know how we did and learn how we can better serve your needs. Please complete and return the following short questionaire for a chance to Win. When you picked up this guide, what were your expectations?

Did we deliver?

1

Worst

2

3

4

How often do you go into Kananaskis? Where? What do you do?

5

Best

What did you like best and why? What would you like to see us add to the 2018 edition?

Typically, how often do you use Calgary’s parks & paths?

What do you like to do in Calgary’s Parks and where?

How many people are travelling in your party? Age range: Child Teen 20-35 36-49 Will you and your friends re-use this guide in the future?

Yes

Have you accessed the guide online? Full Name:

Phone #

Email or Address:

City

50+

No Yes

No

Thank you for participating in this survey. In appreciation for completing and mailing this survey, you will be entered into a prize draw described above. The winner will be randomly selected by CMI Publishing on October 31, 2017. Please mail this survey to: CMI Publishing, 116 Parkview Way SE, Calgary, Alberta, T2J 4M8 If you prefer to keep your copy of this guide intact, please forward your comments to us through Bob@CMIpublishing.ca


Experience Calgary’s Parks ‘n’ Paths A Message from the Publisher Welcome to the fifth annual edition of this, our guide to the parks, pathways, and recreational opportunities located within and in close proximity to Calgary. As residents of Calgary for 24 years, we appreciate the opportunity to step into Fish Creek Provincial Park in just minutes. It is therapeutic to be able to “get out of the city” so quickly, breathe deeply, and de-stress. But our situation isn’t unique. Fish Creek may be one of the largest urban parks in Canada, but it certainly isn’t the only park to which Calgarians flock. Most residents can access a green space quickly now our parks have been connected by a network of 1,000 km of

trails and paths. For a park or path in your area, check out the Rotary/Mattamy Greenway. Readers familiar with our Experience Travel Guides brand will recognize the similarities between this and our other 3 magazines. In addition to our compelling stories, you’ll find maps, and more maps: because everyone loves maps! NEW for 2017: you’ll find many of the Kananaskis maps that we previously ran in Experience the Cowboy Trails. To view and download this magazine, or any of our current and back issues of our sister publications onto your mobile device, go to ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Library. Time in nature has been proven to enhance the quality of our physical and mental health. Make time for it. Bob Harris

Our Contributors

Julie Walker Julie

Cameron Melin

Dr. Don Findlay

Tanya Koob is a

Andrew Penner is

Walker has been an Outdoor Educator for over 25 years. As an IGA certified guide and CANSI cross country ski instructor, she introduces people to the outdoors year round. Currently she is guiding with Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society and ber own company; Full Circle Adventures.

is an avid cyclist and enthusiast of outer space, economics, kitty-cats and beer. Born and raised in Calgary he currently works as an electrician where he can only bother other construction workers, leaving decent people to shuffle like zombies from home to work and back again. He has dabbled in animation, photography and moderate extremism. (Experience Edworthy Park pg 12)

and his brother Dan operate Chiropractical, a high-energy massage and chiropractic clinic offering state-of-the-art diagnostic techniques. They are committed to education and bringing people back to wellness. Married with 2 kids, Don enjoys weight training, running and dancing with his sweetheart Kyla. Visit chiropractical.ca (Foot Care for Those on the Move pg. 18)

Calgary-based freelance writer and lover of all things adventurous in the mountains. She spends her weekends gliding through snow or water. She has an 8 year old son and loves hiking, camping, and exploring the backcountry with her husband and son. Visit Tanya’s Blog where she chronicles her adventures

an independent writer and photographer living in Calgary, Alberta. His work has been featured in Westerworld, Westjet Magazine, Golf Magazine, Golf Tips, NBC.com, and many leading golf and lifestyle publications. When not travelling or working, he enjoys reading, movies, and just chilling out in the backyard with his wife, Dawn, and their four boys. (Five Family-Friendly Activities in Calgary pg 22)

Visit fullcircleadventures.com

(Cross-Country Skiing 101 pg 40)

rockiesfamilyadventures.com

(Family Bike Trails in Kananaskis pg 48)

4 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Experience Calgary’s Parks ‘n’ Paths Table of Contents

The 2017-18 Edition of Experience Calgary’s Parks ‘n’ Paths Use this or our mobile eBooklet to enhance your yearround enjoyment of the growing network of paths and parks within and near to the city. This magazine is produced and distributed annually by CMI Publishing, a division of Complete Marketing Inc, a privately owned company with offices in Calgary. Please support our advertisers and sponsors. Kindly mention where you saw their ad. Without their support this guide would not be possible. Cover photo: taken by Jennifer MacNevin on the summit of Prairie Mountain, Elbow Valley, in Kananaskis Country Publisher: Bob Harris, CMI Publishing Ph: (403) 259.8290 | bob@CMIpublishing.ca Designer: Christine Karchewski Editor: Andrew Penner Special thanks to: Rob Storeshaw, Larry Wasyliw, the Parks Foundation Calgary, Glenbow Museum, Christian Hery, Joe Oberhoffner, our advertisers and contributors For more info: calgarysparksnpaths.com

Specialty Pages

Activities

Calgary Rotary Challenger Park 17 Campground Directory 33 Edworthy Park 12 Experience the Rotary Nature Park 31 Fish Creek Restoration Society 22 Foot Care for Those on the Move 18 Hiking Planning and Safety 36 Kananaskis Country 32 Memorial Forest Program 31 Rotary/Mattamy Greenway 8

5 Things to do at BV Ranche 24 Brown Lowery Provincial Park 44 Cross-Country Skiing 101 40 Experience Sikome Lake 30 Experience the Bow River 20 Family Bike Trails in Kananaskis 48 Five Family Activities in Calgary 6 Fly Fishing on the Bow 21 Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park 38 Weaselhead Natural Eviro. Park 16

Map Pages Bow Valley Provincial Park 47 Brown-Lowery Provincial Park 45 Fish Creek Provincial Park Map 26-27 Fish Creek Single Track Map 28-29 Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park 39 Greenway NE Calgary Map 11 Greenway NW Calgary Map 10 Greenway SE Calgary Map 15

Greenway SW Calgary Map 14 Highwood & Cataract Area 42 Kananaskis Country 34-35 Kananaskis Valley 50 Kananaskis Village 51 Peter Lougheed Provincial Park 43 Rotary/Mattamy Greenway Map 9 Sheep River Provincial Park 46

Rick Fraser MLA Calgary-South East Suite 202, Building D, 5126 126 Avenue SE Calgary, Alberta T2Z 0H2

P: (403) 215-8930 | Calgary.southeast@assembly.ab.ca

www.rickfrasermla.ca

FREE

2017/2018

E

IENCE XPER nosaur Trails The Di

7 Helpful Map Pages “Scotty” the T.

rex

So you wanna be a Dino Hunter ls

The Northern Trai Golf Gems Campground Directory

FREE

NEW THIS YEAR!

You can walk the trails or bike. If you have no bike with you, we have Free-to-borrow bikes at our visitor centre!

Experience The Dinosaur Trails.

The Medicine Hat area offers distinct landscapes, making it an exciting and unique riding destination. Our climate rewards us with very short shoulder seasons, offering one of the longest riding seasons in the country.

Pick up or download your free copy.

Medicine Hat Visitor Information Centre

ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Library

Photo & Selfie

Explore 115kms of Trails!

330 Gehring Road SW · 403.527.6422

TourismMedicinehat.com

@TourismMedicineHat

Contests

5 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

@TourismMedHat


Five Family-Friendly Activities in Calgary Cabin fever: A state characterized by anxiety, restlessness, and boredom, arising from a prolonged stay in a remote or confined space. Yes, we all tend to get a case of it from time to time. And when the kids are clamoring around and getting in your hair (or each other’s hair), the symptoms can get pretty intense. The solution? Get outside! After all, there are hundreds of fun, easy, and inexpensive ways – especially in Calgary! - to get you and your brood moving in the great outdoors.

Disc Golf

Obviously, the benefits of recreating in the great outdoors are many. Vitamin D, physical fitness, communing with nature, mental health, the list goes on and on. And, when you recreate with your family you are strengthening the relationships that matter the most.

Some of the popular public courses in Calgary include Forest Lawn, Thorncliff, Baker Park, and Lloyd Park, located near the old Red Deer Lake School just west of Calgary on hwy 22x. There are also many of private courses throughout the city: Lake Midnapore, Lake Sundance, and Park 96 in Parkland, which was the first private community course in Calgary.

There are many tried-and-true activities that are simple, fun, and doable for nearly everyone. Throwing a Frisbee, flying a kite, cycling around the block, birding, trail running, playing catch, photographing nature, scootering, hiking, roller-blading, Nordic walking, skateboarding, rafting; yes, the list is long. While the “conventional” list could take you an entire summer or two to get through, the “non-conventional” list opens the door to new activities and adventures that may not have been on your radar. Here are five of those to get you started!

The hole not big enough for you in “real” golf? Try disc golf! There are over 4500 courses in North America and, thanks to its ease of entry (many courses are free), it’s growing every year. You just need a disc to get started and people of all ages and abilities can enjoy the camaraderie, the challenge, and the moderate physical exercise of walking the course and throwing discs at the targets, which are chain-linked baskets set on poles.

Regardless of where you play, disc golf is a great activity to do in the great outdoors with family and friends. It’s an addictive and exciting sport that just gets better and better the more you play! calgarydiscgolf.com

Fish Creek Mountain Bike Skills Park Located near the entrance to Sikome Lake, the new Fish Creek Mountain Bike Skills Park is about as much fun as you can have on two wheels. The park, created by the Calgary

Mountain Bike Skills Park

Disc Golf 6 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Five Family-Friendly Activities in Calgary Mountain Bike Alliance and a passionate volunteer base of local riders, is the perfect place to practice your skills and ride flowy, single-track trails that will whet your appetite for the epic mountain trails on Calgary’s doorstep. Phase 1 (the more advanced Phase 2 has yet to be started) consists of two superfun pump tracks and a couple of beginner to intermediate loop trails with rollers, berms, table-tops, and small drops.

Bumper Balls For your next birthday party, staff function, or family reunion why not try something that is guaranteed to give everyone a hearty workout and a boat-load of belly laughs? Yup, Bumper Balls are the real deal when you need to spice up an event. You can play soccer (full contact, of course) or just try and knock each other into oblivion. Either way, Bumper Balls are going to provide plenty of exercise and entertainment.

The park, which has seen an influx of riders of all ages and skill levels, is free to use. However, riders need to respect the rules of park and wear helmets at all times. bikepark.cmbalink.com

A minimum of six balls is required with a rental. Cost is $240 including delivery and set-up. Visit bumperball.ca.

Lawn Bowling

Geocaching

The stereotype, “lawn bowling is for old people,” is all wrong! Kids love it too. Hipsters love lawn bowling. Your aunt loves lawn bowling as well. It’s a simple sport – roll out “the jack” and take turns bowling the remaining balls to get as close to it as possible to score points. It can be played at a number of clubs and venues throughout Calgary. Everyone (well almost everyone) loves lawn bowling.

It’s like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get! There’s something about a treasure hunt that’s motivating for kids – and adults! - to get outside and go exploring.

Calgary is home to four historic lawn bowling clubs (the sport itself dates back to 13th century) where the public can play: Bow Valley, Inglewood, Stanley Park, and the Calgary Lawn Bowling Club in Kensington.

There are geocaches (canisters containing random trinkets and a logbook) tucked away in the nooks and crannies throughout Calgary. Often parks, such as Fish Creek or Nosehill, contain the largest collection of caches. In fact, there are hundreds of geocaches waiting to be found by you...and your brood. All you need to do to get started is download the app and you can begin your quest! (go to geocaching.com) By: Andrew Penner

Bumper Balls

Lawn Bowling

Photo Courtesy of Bumber

Balls

7 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience the Rotary/Mattamy Greenway

The 2016 construction season saw the completion of many of the missing connections of the pathway system that encircles the city. Parks Foundation Calgary (PFC) is approaching the completion of the 138km Rotary/Mattamy Greenway, while creating some extraordinary new amenities.

Manmeet Singh Bhullar Park In 2016, the concept of a new park dedicated in his memory was well received. It will be built in the northeast community of Taradale. The design includes five 15 foot tall steel archways that represent Bhullar’s strength and integrity.

The long awaited pathway connection has been paved at the railway crossing beside the communities of Applewood and Abbeydale. The completion of the pedestrian railway crossing, allowed for the construction of the missing one km section of pathway that connects 17th Ave SE to the pathways previously completed to the north. A small section of pathway adjacent to the railway will be finished in 2017.

Tourmaline Outdoor Fitness Park Installation in the Point McKay area is now complete. Because it is located on well-used pathways, this park is expected to be one of the most utilized outdoor fitness facilities in the city.

PFC completed paving a pathway around Copperfield in the south east. In 2017, two boardwalks will be constructed over the wetlands which will then connect the boardwalks to the north with the pathways in Auburn Bay and Mahogany. The design of the final 6.7km section of the Greenway has been completed. It will connect Evanston with pathways heading east to Deerfoot Trail. Construction will start in 2017. New Amenities along the Rotary/Mattamy Greenway David Richardson Memorial Disc Golf Park The design for this 18 hole course is now complete. With fundraising going well, construction is expected to start in 2017.

Progress Energy Memorial Garden Volunteers planted an additional 1000 poppies in the garden and Progress Energy funded the installation of six beautiful graphic panels that add special meaning to this memorial site. #Greenway150 Summer Challenge Join our challenge by walking, running, biking or rollerblading 150 km on the Greenway. Sign up as an individual or as a team. Add up your kilometers throughout the summer. Please visitgreenway150.com In conjunction with Canada’s 150th birthday this year, PFC has planned a city-wide celebration scheduled for Sept 2, 2017. For more information please refer to the stories and quadrant maps that follow and check out parksfdn.com/greenway

8 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Experience the Rotary/Mattamy Greenway

Greenway pathways Pathways not completed Greenway amenities Washrooms C-Train transit routes Transportation utility corridor

Detailed quadrant maps can be found on the following pages: NW Map pg 10 NE Map pg 11 SW Map pg 14 SE Map pg 15

Courtesy of Parks Foundation Calgary

9 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Rotary/Mattamy Greenway Map - NW Calgary

Legend pg 9

South Location - 403-253-7717 9176 Macleod Trail South

North Location - 403.454.4404 thecyclepath.ca

10 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey

#4112 - 8650 112 Ave NW


Rotary/Mattamy Greenway Map - NE Calgary

Legend pg 9

(403) 297-6561 BowHabitat.Alberta.ca

1440 17a St SE Calgary, AB T2G 4T9

11 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience Edworthy Park

Samuel Livingston, Courtesy of the Glenbow Musum (na-19-2)

Five kilometers west of Calgary’s downtown clamour, the Bow River passes under a pedestrian bridge where people move at a much more leisurely pace. On warm, sunny days many people float by on small, inflatable water-craft, laughing and having the time of their lives. All year long, regardless of the weather, people walk, jog, and cycle along the pathways. Welcome to Edworthy Park, one of Calgary’s finest green spaces! The park is nestled along a picturesque escarpment along the smooth-flowing Bow River. Under a canopy of poplar, aspen, and Douglas fir trees, it rises beautifully from the riverbank. Serene meadows covered with native grass, shrubs and flowers fill the gaps between groves. The flats are arranged with fire pits, playground equipment, washrooms, and trailheads. For centuries, members of the Blackfoot Confederacy chased bison to their death over a cliff that is close to 37th Street S.W. The signing of Treaty Seven silenced the drums that pounded at the camps where the broken carcasses were processed. It was John Lawrey who, in 1882, became the first European to settle in the area. Lawrey was from Cornwall, England and was known for his green thumb. When the railway tracks were installed in 1883 he already had a successful garden market

Thomas Edworthy, Courtesy of the Glenbow Musum (na-1494-26)

that was producing income. He was one of the first people to defy Calgary’s challenging climate and grow foods that many, including the first European explorers, suspected would not grow. Today the Lawrey Gardens remain one of the prettiest areas within Edworthy Park. At age 16, Thomas Edworthy arrived in Calgary in 1883. He met John Lawrey and followed his example by choosing a piece of land to the west of downtown. There he built a log cabin and started a garden market, which helped to feed the NWMP. He named his home Shaganappi Ranch and sold potatoes called the Shaganappi Spud. Three nearby quarries yielded quality sandstone that was taken away by train. It was used in local buildings and the Saskatchewan Legislature. The stone used in Calgary’s old city hall was pulled from a hill in this area. For the first three decades of the 20th century, a large kiln claimed to produce the best decorative bricks in Canada. Thomas married the widow of the region’s first photographer and together they had two children before dying of typhoid fever. He contracted the disease while caring for his friend, Sam Livingston, who some historians refer to as “Calgary’s first citizen.” The land stayed in the family for six more decades until the 1950s and 60s when it was sold to the city.

12 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


One of Calgary’s Oldest and Finest

Calgary Pressed Brick and Sandstone Company plant, Brickburn, Alberta, Courtesy of the Glenbow Musum (na-5392-5)

Today Edworthy Park is now a busy crossroads for hundreds of commuters and recreational cyclists. The road to the parking lot (which is closed to motorists after 11 pm) snakes through a wooded coulee where slippery winter ice oozes from the hill to cover parts of the pavement. During most months, many trips are made over the bridge and up Edworthy Road. After climbing to the first plateau, riders can either carry on to reach a destination east of Sarcee Trail or cross that important road and continue climbing along a bike-friendly route to the top of the city where Springbank Road rolls out of town and into the foothills. A quick pulse and a sweaty brow will probably result from the two hundred meters of elevation change! Cyclists descending towards the park have several options upon reaching the bottom of the park near the river. A quick left turn leads to a dirt trail beside the CP Rail tracks to the area where the brick oven once burned hot; an area called Brickburn, where there was also a small community and a whistle stop for passenger trains. Evidence of the enterprise can still be seen in the ground. Along the river there are routes towards downtown on either side of the water. The south side is generally the quieter and more scenic option. It winds through the lovely grounds of

Lawrey Gardens. In summer this route is green and fragrant. In winter, ice slopes over parts to the path to create an awkward surface that is difficult to stand on and unadvisable to bike over. The locomotives and freight cars that rumble down the tracks fill the air with sound several times a day. Edworthy Park is also home to flowers and birds that are rare in the rest of the city. It’s very common to see nature lovers strolling through the park with their binoculars and books to catalog their sightings. The paved pathway on the north side of the Bow River is straighter and, typically, clear year-round. It can be ridden west towards Montgomery and Bowness as well as east towards downtown. Rain or shine, winter or summer, there are always plenty of people using this scenic pathway. Regardless if you’re biking, walking, running, roller-blading, or perhaps using some other sort of “wheeled” contraption, the scenic pathways of Edworthy Park are awesome to explore. From the lovely gardens to the deep-green forests, the rivers and the quiet creeks, Edworthy Park is without a doubt one of the prettiest places to spend a day in Calgary. By: Cameron Melin

13 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Rotary/Mattamy Greenway Map - SW Calgary Bo

Trail 17 Ave SW

parkland plantings and interpretation

ond

m ich

griffith woods park

Mac Leo d Tr ail

Crowchild Trail

R

Rd

37 St SW

climbable sculpture

Sarcee Trail

69 Street SW

w

Glenmore Trail

66 Ave SW weaslehead north glenmore park natural area

Our office is working hard to serve the people of Calgary Shaw.

Glenmore Trail

south glenmore park

We are available to help residents resolve issues with provincial programs and services.

themed playground

Southland Dr Anderson Rd

MacLeo

37 St SW

d Trail

24 Street SW

sculpture park

Please call our office if you would like to invite MLA Graham Sucha to your community event.

90 Ave SW

14 Street SW

Heritage Drive

fish creek park

Graham Sucha, MLA for Calgary Shaw

James Mckevitt Fish Creek Blvd

328, 22 Midlake Blvd SE Calgary, AB T2X 2X7 403-256-8969 | calgary.shaw@assembly.ab.ca 162 Ave SW

Stoney rail

Legend pg 9

Heritage Park Historical Village Check out our Yellow Otter Tipi | HeritagePark.ca 403-268-8500

14 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Rotary/Mattamy Greenway Map - SE Calgary

Legend pg 9

South Location - 403-253-7717 9176 Macleod Trail South

North Location - 403.454.4404 thecyclepath.ca

15 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

#4112 - 8650 112 Ave NW


Experience the Weaselhead

Photo Courtesy of Tanya Koob

Photo Courtesy of Tanya Koob

The Weaselhead Natural Environment Park was created in the early 1980s. It encompasses 237 hectares of natural land and is located in SW Calgary. There are two entrances, one in the north in the community of Lakeview and one in the south near Oakridge and Glenmore Landing. This wildland park is a great example of a “riparian” habitat, or a landscape that is greatly influenced by a stream, river or lake. In this case, the park is located in the Elbow River Valley and the trees, plants, and animals that live there are directly influenced by the river. Ancient spruce, some well over 150 years-old, live in the river basin. You won’t find pines here as they prefer dry soil. The Weaselhead contains wood frogs, muskrats, moose, coyotes, beaver, and hundreds of migrating bird species, including ducks and raptors. Rose-breasted grosbeaks, mergansers, and swans are also species that are regularly seen in the region. The Weaselhead is a sanctuary for kayakers, cyclists, birders, and dog walkers. The Elbow River was dammed in 1933 to make the Glenmore Reservoir and this created a lake and an area known as “the mud flats.” The mud flats support shore birds, muskrats as well

as under-water life. The entire natural area acted as a sponge and a strainer during the 2013 flood. The willows and other shrubs strain out debris and the oxbows and the back-channels absorb excess water.  Although the origin of the name is uncertain, the park is most likely named after the Tsuu T’ina Chief, Weaselhead, who was in power at the time of European contact. The park borders the  thier treaty lands, creating a wilderness riparian  corridor from Calgary  west to Bragg Creek and on  to Elbow Lake, which is the source of the Elbow River. The Weaselhead is a natural treasure in Calgary and, not surprisingly, its wilderness qualities are protected by city bylaws. The river basin provides household water to tens of thousands of Calgarians. If you need to reconnect with your deeper self, the Weaselhead provides that sanctuary for everyone. Whether you are  watching the cliff swallows, skipping rocks, sitting under a 200 year-old tree, or pausing on your bike ride around the reservoir, you’ll certainly be enriched by the untamed, natural world around you. This beautiful riparian valley is vital to our health, our water supply, and the plant and animal species that Calgarians have come to love! By: Julie Walker

16 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Experience Calgary Rotary Challenger Park There is a large group of Canadians that modern society tends to overlook. They are the many disabled individuals who face barriers and obstacles not encountered by able-bodied people. Calgary Rotary Challenger Park is a barrier free meeting and recreational facility that is accessible to all people regardless of their age or ability. But it is more than that. It is a model of community inclusiveness where persons with disabilities can play next to, and with their able-bodied peers.  We welcome individuals and organizations to run their programs here.

courts, tennis courts, dressing rooms, and 2 ball diamonds. The Jim & Pearl Burns Centre houses Park Administration, rented office space, as well as meeting space, concession, and other amenities.

Challenger Park is the result of a partnership of individuals and organizations representing more than 100,000 people in the community. Through this ongoing combined effort, the Park has become and will remain a thriving success.

What’s next? Well, imagine a place where children who are physically and intellectually challenged are assisted by seniors looking to make each day fulfilling. We are creating a place where new Canadians find guidance and support, alongside autistic teens who find acceptance in their very own Clubhouse. Imagine a place where people find what they need in a community designed to help them in every way. That is a place that is truly magical. That is the Centre for All Abilities.

Located on twenty-three acres of land provided by the Calgary Airport Authority, the Rotary Challenger Park consists of a vast recreational area, an administration building, a barrier-free playground, picnic areas, free parking for 250 cars and 6 buses, and a specialized drop-off area. The sporting facilities include a soccer/football field, cricket field, 400 metre running track, field event area, basketball

Our vision is to be the best barrier-free sport and recreation facility, that is sustainable, fully utilized and supported by the community. Our mission is to provide accessible recreational facilities, WHERE EVERYONE CAN PLAY.

To learn more, please go to allabilitiescentre.com

Events at Calgary Rotary Challenger Park July 2 International Festival Day Celebrations

July 15-16 Fiji Association Soccer Tournament

Where family, friends and community unite.

August 26-27 Fiji Association Soccer Tournament

August 30 12th Annual Calgary Airport Authority Golf Tournament

September 9 Carifest (Jennifer Duncan)

Enjoy our running track, tennis courts and a barrier free play ground and picnic area available daily, Or book your next family, community, or corporate event and enjoy all the facility has to offer. Calgary Rotary Challenger Park is a barrier free recreational facility that is accessible to all. A place where persons with disabilities can play next to and with their able-bodied peers.

Visit us today and enjoy this unique park 3688 – 48 Avenue NE | challengerpark.com 403-250-2707 | info@challengerpark.com 17 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Foot Care for Those on the Move

In spring, when the great Canadian hibernation ends, many of

If a muscle and its supporting connective tissue are repeatedly

us flock outdoors to soak up the way-too-short summer season.

over-worked, it starts to break down where it inserts into bone.

Outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy many activities in Calgary’s

In the case of plantar fasciitis, this will be at the heel or ball of

beautiful parks. If you’re a runner, cyclist, or enjoy longer

the foot. When relatively new, plantar fasciitis is often simple

walks, the interconnected parkway system is a haven. These

to deal with. However, some people will develop a chronic

activities, unfortunatly, can be extremely hard on our feet!

problem with this painful disorder.

After six months of allowing them to atrophy and decondition,

I’d like to share a few tips and strategies to help alleviate the

we typically expect our feet to perform at the level we left them

pain of plantar fasciitis or limit its affect for those with more

in the fall. But this rapid onset of activity - compounded by old

chronic cases. When rehabilitating anything, there are two key

shoes and perhaps other types of flippy-floppy non-supportive

components: flexibility and strengthening.

footware - are a good recipe for pain, especially in the heel. For flexibility, there are two key stretches. The first involves the While there are several types of foot pain, planter fasciitis is

bottom of the foot, including the plantar fascia. Kneel down

more and more common. It tends to affect those who exercise

and sitting on your heels with your toes bent forward so the

irregularly and those who wear unsupportive footwear.

ball of your foot is on the ground. The further back you sit the more tension it will create. As the connective tissue is very

The plantar fascia is a thick band of connective tissue that runs

tough, you can hold this position between 30 sec and 2 min.

from the bottom front part of the heel bone forward to the ball of the foot. Deep in the plantar fascia are muscles that can also

The second stretch is predominately for the calf. This can be

become strained and become painful. If you’ve ever had tennis

performed by dropping your heel down off the edge of a step.

elbow, or any other repetitive strain disorder, you will be able

You can also place your foot against a wall and slowly bring the

to empathize with those with plantar fasciitis!

hips and knee toward the wall. Hold this stretch for 30 seconds.

18 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Foot Care for Those on the Move A third strategy to loosen up the muscles and fascia is to deeply

Try these two ways to strengthen the underside of your foot.

massage it. This can be done with your hands or creatively

First, lay a towel out flat on the floor. Then use your foot to

done in many other ways. One of the more popular ways is to

bunch the towel up and be sure to squeeze the foot after each

use a golf ball on the bottom of the foot. Simply put the ball

crumpling motion. Second, use an exercise band and loop the

on the floor and roll it around between the heel and forefoot.

center of the band around the foot from heel to toe. Pull to a firm tension with the toes bent back. Now flex the foot and

Alternatively, a start/stop pressure point release method can be

toes, but not the ankle, downward. I recommend working your

employed. This involves moving the golf ball to a sore point,

way up to four sets of 40 reps over the first couple weeks, doing

applying pressure as tolerated for about 10 sec, then shifting

them every second day.

the ball slightly under the foot to an adjacent point. Again, applying a tolerable pressure in that spot for 10 sec, or so.

As earlier mentioned, footwear can play a pivotal role in your success with treating or preventing foot pain of many types.

Stretching and loosening the muscles and tissues located in

Be sure you have the proper footwear for the exercise at hand!

the bottom of the foot is often enough to alleviate the pain and discomfort. However, unfortunately, if you don’t strengthen

Obviously, we need our feet to take us everywhere! Look after

the foot the chance of the pain returning is much higher.

them. Care for your body and keep those feet moving! Photos and Story by: Dr. Don Findlay

19 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience the Bow River

Photo Courtesy of Travel Alberta / Caitlyn Giorgio @caitlyngiorgio

Meandering through the heart of Calgary, the sliver of river that we know and love is, and forever will be, the Bow River. It’s the waterway that defines us. Not surprisingly, its peaceful waters are also a place for thousands of Calgarians to recreate. And regardless if you’re rafting, kayaking, canoeing, SUPing, floating or fishing, if you’re recreating on the Bow, you are going to need an access point. Currently, the City of Calgary has nine “approved” river access points on the Bow River. However, thanks to a new strategy plan proposed by council in January, that number is expected to increase to 34 by 2022. The new plan will see a number of closed access points reopen (they were damaged in the 2013 flood) and new access points created. These will include boat launch sites as well as handlaunch sites for inflatable rafts. Six priority points will start construction this year and will reportedly cost $1.69 million. Unquestionably, the new access points will create and expand a user-friendly network of locations where Calgarians can safely – and, perhaps most importantly, without damaging the environment! – get out onto the river to enjoy this awesome natural attraction we call “The Bow.” The 6 new priority locations are Graves Bridge, Ogden Bridge, Albert Park/Harvie Passage, Inglewood Bridge, Sunnyside, and Baker Park. Visit calgary.ca/CSPS/Parks Without a doubt, your safety is number one on the river! Here are some key safety points when on the river (from the Calgary Fire Department).

Safety • Before you get on the river, check the weather and river conditions. Do not head out if a thunderstorm is coming. The Province posts river advisories and conditions on their website environment.alberta.ca/forecasting/advisories. The Calgary River Users Alliance also posts river warnings and advisories on their website. calgaryriverusers.org • Even when an advisory is not in place, be cautious. Assess the river for any hazards and only enter if you feel your skill level can manage the current flow. • Have the right equipment, including a life jacket, spare pump, oars, dry boxes, emergency kit, and drinking water.  • Life jackets can save your life. Ensure the life jacket fits properly and is appropriate for your weight. • Whitewater rafts are made from strong materials such as polyester, and are usually coated with a synthetic rubber. Inflatables such as air mattresses or inner tubes shouldn’t be used on the rivers, as they can easily tear when they come into contact with rocks or debris. Environment • River users are strongly encouraged to use the bathroom facilities and garbage cans to protect our natural areas. • Use only designated access points as non-designated areas may be environmentally sensitive. Even walking through these areas and/or tracking dirt into the river can have a profound effect on the river biology. • It is not just litter that damages our river environment, any other liquid such as drinks or urine can have a big impact. Keep our rivers healthy and safe by ensuring the only thing that goes into our rivers is rain. By: Andrew Penner

20 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Experience Fly Fishing on the Bow Ten minutes before our take-out at Policeman’s Flats, in one of the weirdest five minutes of fishing I’ve ever experienced, the sky unleashed its fury and our luck suddenly changed. During the chaotic hailstorm we, miraculously, bagged our only brown trout of the day. And, when it was all said and done, my respect for severe Alberta thunderstorms - and one of our province’s most revered trout streams - reached new heights. A favourite among Alberta’s fly-fishing community, the Bow River regularly gives up rainbow and brown trout worth writing home about. Thanks to our professional guide and a drift-boat rental with Country Pleasures, I was oozing with confidence and fully expecting to bag many trophy-size trout. Joining me on this “epic” one-trout day was my father-in-law, Gordon, who had last picked up a fly-rod when Jimmy Carter was president. As for me, I was probably looking at the Ronald Reagan days. But, as seasoned veterans will tell you, even the rookies can score big on the Bow.

east. For most of the summer, it serves up stable conditions that are ideal for driftboat fly-fishing. Unfortunately, to put it mildly, we just hit the river on a challenging day. Shortly after lunch, the clouds gathered and our cool, blustery day made a big turn for the worse. By the time we reached Hwy 22x - a legendary hot spot - a steady rain was falling. And still no luck with the fishing. Jason was dismayed. Just past 22x, the wind started whipping violently through the trees and hail started hammering down. Thing went white and chaotic. We were caught. I could hardly see my father-inlaw, Gordon, at the front of the boat. But above the madness I heard him yell. “Hey, I’ve got something!” Jason quickly put down anchor as Gordon battled one of the meanest, maddest, most miniscule brown trout that’s ever been snagged on the Bow. But, unlike me, at least he got one.

Shortly after our put-in under the Glenmore overpass, I turned to our guide, Jason Eggleton, who has bagged hundreds of days guiding float trips down the Bow, and sheepishly asked, “so how many fish did you catch on your best day on the river?” “People measure their best days differently,” he said with a wry grin. “But, if you’re strictly after quantity, sixty or seventy, I guess. I’ve had days where it’s virtually non-stop action. The Bow can be that good.” Of course, there were reasons - well, let’s just say “legitimate excuses” - for our meager take. In spring, during run-off or spring storms, the water levels on the Bow can change quickly. And this fluctuation, as well the poor visibility that accompanies rapidly changing water, can be a major hindrance to fly-fishing. Mike Gifford, owner of Country Pleasures says “Think of it this way, when your living space is drastically being altered, are you going to be thinking about food? It’s probably the last thing on your mind. For good fishing we need stable conditions.” For most competent anglers drifting down the Bow - especially during the peak summer months when the water is clear and stable – trying to find excuses is seldom necessary. The Bow, which is the only premier trout stream in North America to flow through a major city, gets bigger and slower as it moves 21 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

Story and Photo by: Andrew Penner


The Ranche at Fish Creek Restoration Society

Art sponsor ‘Stephen Spencer’ Home on the Range by Wendy Palmer

The Ranche at Fish Creek Restoration Society was founded in 1995 to preserve the Bow Valley Ranche and this historic landmark in Calgary. Established in 1873 and located in Fish Creek Provincial Park, the Bow Valley Ranche brings together recreational and entertainment areas, interpretive walks, and education stewardship opportunities for students, the community, and the general public. It seeks to honour our heritage and culture, which is vital to our community. The main feature of the site is the Ranche house, which was built in 1896 by William Roper Hull. The house has now been converted into a fine-dining restaurant called The Bow Valley Ranche Restaurant. Nearby are also Annie’s Café,

Artisan Gardens The Artisan Gardens honours the First Nations people who prior to 1890 inhabited the Fish Creek Valley. This unique, permanent art gallery in nature features 175 works of art by 75 Canadian artists, of which 6 are Indigenous people. The Artisan Gardens reflects three themes: First Nations, family, and the natural environment of Fish Creek Valley. Surrounding a 21-ft stainless steel teepee, the amphitheater-like seating features 12 benches with three-sided arrowhead monolith ends. Each bench showcases pieces of original art that use mediums such as oils, acrylics, stone, copper, metals, and mosaics.

Artisan Gardens

the Native Species Garden, Artisan Gardens, Branded Patio, and a new attraction for 2017, the Poetry Legacy Garden. The Artisan Gardens and the Branded Patio reflect the Society’s vision to share the rich history of the Fish Creek Valley through art. It provides a special opportunity for people interested in creating their own legacy through their one-of-a-kind works. These serene, educational, and interpretive gardens feature quiet pathways, wooden benches, an intimate period gazebo, a mini amphitheater, historical gas lampposts, sandstone boulders, an original lodgepole pine teepee, bronze sculptures, art sculptures, and native plants, shrubs and trees.

Branded Patio This patio showcases all of the brands of Senator Patrick Burns’ empire and 87 mosaic stepping stones in a wagon-wheel design, which is reflective of a long-gone era. Individually designed by people just like you, each mosaic provides an opportunity for you and your children – the Ranche hands of the future! – to create special memories and a unique family legacy. Poetry Legacy Garden The Poetry Legacy Garden is a new area in the native gardens that features a 20-ft. hand-carved Poet Tree. This tall and

22 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Sponsorship Opportunities unique structure features an open book at the top with book ends working their way to the base where a small exchange library is situated. It offers students an opportunity for book exchanges and showcases poems written by Alberta students. In 2017 the themes for the poems are 150 Historical Albertans. Additionally, there will be a variety of 20 induvial-sized wooden benches situated in the area available for seating. The Legacy Poetry Garden will encourage creativity in writing, enhance literacy, and provide a teaching facility for a variety of literary and academic programs. Sponsorship Opportunities We invite you to join us and be a part of these many unique opportunities at The Bow Valley Ranche. In creating a lasting and personal legacy, your gift ensures Alberta’s history, culture, and the arts are honoured and represented in a distinctive and culturally significant way. All our valued sponsors will receive a charitable tax receipt and recognition that reflects the level of donation. There are various levels of sponsorship and we encourage you to visit our web site, bowvalleyranche.com, to learn more about the sponsorship opportunities. All and any donations are welcome.

The Bow Valley Ranche Learning Centre In the fall of 2015, after celebrating the 20th Anniversary of The Ranche at Fish Creek Restoration Society, we opened our Learning Centre by presenting 12 historical curriculums for grades 4, 5 and 7 students. These are presented by our History Wrangler, Rob Lennard, and presented in both French and English at the beautiful Artisan Gardens. Annual celebrations include Alberta’s birthday party on September 1st and Winterfest, which is held in January each year. The Ranche at Fish Creek Restoration Society is volunteer based so all funds raised go directly into our programs. We are proud to be partners with Birdies for Kids presented by Alta link, at the Shaw Charity Classic Golf Tournament held Aug 30th to Sept 3rd at Canyon Meadows Golf and Country Club to donate: shawcharityclassic.com/donate/rancheatfishcreek. By: Larry Wasyliw

To learn more about our programs visit us at bowvalleyranche.com

Branded Patio Stone

The Bow Valley Ranche Restaurant

23 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


5 Things to do at the Bow Valley Ranche Get an Amazing Ice Cream Cone Annie’s Bakery and Café offers fresh, pre-packaged food for a delicious picnic in the park, but their claim to fame is the ice cream! Patrons line up out the door for a taste of classics, new and old. Nothing beats a cold cone on a hot summer day.

Get Married With two of Calgary’s top wedding venues, magnificent backdrops and ceremony sites, Fish Creek Provincial Park has become one of the most sought-after wedding locations in Calgary. (Still need convincing? Check the CMI Publishing 2015 archived edition of Experience Fish Creek Provincial Park for “8 Reasons Why You Should Get Married at Fish Creek Provincial Park”.) Courtesy of Dani & Chad Thompson

Mystery Dinner Theatre Each year on Halloween, the Grand Salon in the Bow Valley Ranche Restaurant is transformed into a night of fabulous entertainment in the form of dinner theatre. In partnership with one of Calgary’s talented theatre troops, past themes have included Cooking up a Murder and The Prohibition: A Roaring ‘20s Dinner Theatre.

Have Brunch at One of the Country’s Top 50 Brunch Restaurants

Courtesy of Bookstrucker Photography

Open Table Diners have spoken. The Bow Valley Ranche Restaurant serves up some of the best brunch in the country. Offering locally-sourced, sustainable food, weekend brunch is a fabulous way to get the family together. On holidays like Easter, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day, Chef Jenny Kang puts together a special menu. Be sure to book early, though.

Immerse in the History The Bow Valley Ranche Restaurant and Annie’s Bakery & Café are two of the city’s oldest buildings. The history runs deep in both and is nearly twelve decades long. It all began with a few characters who were critical to the development of Alberta’s cattle industry, including William Roper Hull, Senator Patrick Burns—one of the Calgary Stampede’s Big Four—and Charlie Yuen, the Ranch hand who did odd chores and fed the crew and who is said to haunt the house to this day.

Courtesy of Salt Food Photography

For a more complete history, please visit the website for the Ranche at Fish Creek Restoration Society.

24 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Experience The Ranche

immerse in the history, indulge in the food bv rrestau rant.com | i nfo@bv rrestau rant.com | @rancheyyc 25 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Macleod Trail

Dri ve

Anderson Road S.E.

Fish Creek Provincial Park Map Calgary Transit

Woodlands A

130 Avenue S.W.

A

Canyon Meadows

Macleod Trail

A

8

Woodpath Road S.W.

Elbow Drive

A

1

Station

2

James McKevitt Road S.W.

ail od Tr

Environmental Learning Centre

4

A

.E.

7 A

Parkland

A

R

8

A

Reservable Group Day Use 3 Areas

9

Shaw’s Meadow

Marshall Springs

Macle

Evergreen

Fish Creek Boulevard. S.W.

Shawnee Slopes

Burnsm

Shawnee Gate. S.W.

A

A Glennfield Group Day Use (reservations Fi A sh C accepted)

James McKevitt Rd. S.W. Midnapore

Macleod Trail

Bannister Road. S.E.

k ree

A

2A

1.8

3.5

7.8

8.8

9.2 12.8 9.4 10.6 13.7

14.2 11.8

1.7

6.0

7.0

7.4 11.0 7.6

8.8 11.9

12.4 10.0

4.3

5.3

5.7

9.3

5.9

7.1 10.2

10.7

8.3

1.0

1.4

5.0

1.6

2.8

5.9

6.4

4.0

0.6

5.0

1.6

2.8

5.9

6.4

3.2

5.4

2.0

3.2

6.3

6.8

2.6

3.4

4.6

7.7

1.4

8.0

1.2

4.3

4.8

4.6

3.1

6.0

5.8

9.1

9.1

4.3

3.0

1.8

Glennfield

6.0

4.7

3.5

1.7

Bow Valley Ranch

10.3 9.0

7.8

6.0

4.3

Hull's Wood

11.3 10.0 8.8

7.0

5.3

1.0

Sikome Lake

11.7 10.4 9.2

7.4

5.7

1.4

0.6

McKenzie Meadows

15.3 14.0 12.8 11.0 9.3

5.0

5.0

5.4

Burnsmead

11.9 10.6 9.4

5.9

1.6

1.6

2.0

Bankside

13.1 11.8 10.6 8.8

7.1

2.8

2.8

3.2

4.6

1.2

Mallard Point

16.2 14.9 13.7 11.9 10.2 5.9

5.9

6.3

7.7

4.3

3.1

Rotary Nature Park

16.7 15.4 14.2 12.4 10.7 6.4

6.4

6.8

1.4

4.8

6.0

9.1

Lafarge Meadows

14.3 13.0 11.8 10.0 8.3

3.2

2.6

8.0

4.6

5.8

9.1

7.6

4.0

3.4

3.7 3.7

500

1000

Sundance

All Bridges have now been repaired Paved Pathway

2000

Metres

26 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey

A

Sikome Lake

Granular Pathway Preservation Zone (Do not enter)

A

Park Boundary Swimming Restaurant Seasonal Concession Day Use/Picnic Area Sheltered Picnic Area

Scale: 1:44,000 0

Hul Wo

A

Sun Valley Blvd.

15.4 13.0

Votier's Flats

13

A

ad Me

4.7

1.2

12

ow

Pa re

ge

3.0

2.5

A

La

far

yN

atu

oin

Ro

Ma

Ba

Bu

16.7 14.3

9.0 10.0 10.4 14.0 10.6 11.8 14.9

Marshall Springs

N

tar

dP

ide

llar

nks

ad

t

ead

me

eM

rns

ake

nzi

eL

om

Ke Mc

Sik

6.0 10.3 11.3 11.7 15.3 11.9 13.1 16.2

Hu

4.3

Bo

2.5

1.3

A

s

rk

s ow

h

d

yR

Wo o

ll's

fiel

wV alle

d

ts

Gle

nn

Fla

Sp

Vo ti

er's

all

Ma

rsh

anc

gs rin

ace

ve

Ter r

Gro

on

bo Be

ann Sh

1.3

Bebo Grove

1.2

Bow Valley Ranch 11

10 A

Shannon Terrace

Lake Bonaventure

Bo

Shawnee Slopes

6 5

Glennfield

Bannister Road S.E.

Shannon Terrace LRT

lS

Bebo Grove

A

Deer Ridge

9 Votier’s Flats

i Tra

Shaw's Meadow

Mallard Point

Canyon Meado ws D rive

24th Street S.W.

Shawne e Gate S .W.

Evergreen Street S.W.

Lake Bonaventure

A

Anderson Ro

om

Woodbine

A

ott

A

7

37th Street S.W.

Lake Bonavista

Anderson Road S.W.

wB

Votier's Flats A

Bow River Pathway

Bow Bottom Trail S.E.

Elbo w

Canyon Meadows

LRT Station

Lake Chaparral


Fish Creek Provincial Park Map Anderson Road S.E.

City of Calgary Canyon Meadows

Fish Creek Provincial Park

Macleod Trail

15

Bow Bottom Trail S.E.

0

w

Ri

Mallard Queensland Point

Drive

Poplar Island

Deer Ridge

8 w Bo

9

ve

r

dows Canyon Mea

Douglasdale

Bo

Lake Bonaventure

m

tto

Bo

s w

il Tra . S.E

nee S.W.

Bow River Pathway

Lake Bonavista

Glennfield Group Day Use (reservations accepted)

Bankside

Parkland Deer Run

Burnsmead

Fish Creek

Bannister Road. S.E.

Bow Valley Ranch

14 Midnapore

McKenzie

10 11

All Bridges have now been repaired Bridge Number

2

Sundance

Steep Hill

12 13

Hull’s Wood

McKenzie Meadows Golf Course

Sikome

Trail Access Trans Canada Trail Sun Valley Boulevard

Information

22X

Washrooms Seasonal Playground Residential Community

Rotary Nature Park

2 Lake Chaparral

Boat Launch Calgary Transit

194 Avenue S.E.

27 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

Lafarge Meadows

Cranston

5

10 Km


Fish Creek Single Track Trail Map

Elbow Woodpath Road S.W.

24th Street S.W.

Evergreen Street S.W. 37th Street S.W.

James M

Pathways and Trails • Stay on designated trails. Check Park map and signage for approved trails. Failure to do so could result in a conviction, pursuant to Section 27(2) of the Provincial Parks Act (General Regulations).

• Some areas have been closed to encourage natural vegetation and reclamation of impacted areas. All reclaimed areas are designated by these signs:

• Follow the directions of posted notices or signs. • The single track trail system is connected with existing paved and granular pathways. Single track trails are designated by this sign:

This trail is closed to allow restoration and regeneration of vegetation. For more information phone 403-297-5293

South Location - 403-253-7717 9176 Macleod Trail South

TRAIL CLOSED

North Location - 403.454.4404 thecyclepath.ca

28 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey

#4112 - 8650 112 Ave NW


Trail Etiquette Elbow Drive

Macleod Trail

green et S.W. Shawnee Gate S.W.

Bannister Road S.E.

James Mckevitt Road S.W.

Macleod Trail

N

Park Facilities and Information Park washroom facilities are located near staging areas; consult detailed Park maps for facility locations. For Park info phone 403-297-5293 or visit fish-creek.org

Trail Etiquette

Safety on Single Track Trails

• Be courteous - a cyclist climbing a steep grade will appreciate your stepping aside.

• Single track trails are maintained at a lesser standard than paved or granular trails, and are not graded for difficulty levels; use at your own risk.

• Avoid trail use when it is soft and muddy to help prevent trail widening and the creation of short cuts. • Do not alter the trail in any way. No building jumps or obstacles.

• All riders should wear a helmet. Helmets are mandatory for those under 18 years of age.

EMERGENCY telephone 9-1-1 EMERGENCY Locator numbers are located throughout the Park. Quote this number to emergency staff so they can easily locate you in the Park.

• Be aware that Park maintenance and emergency vehicles may be on Park pathways.

Trail Care Program: If you or your group would like to participate in a Trail Care day, please contact the Friends of Fish Creek Provincial Park Society, visit friendsoffishcreek.org or phone 403-238-3841. 29 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience Sikome Lake

Photo Courtesy of Travel Alberta / Alberta Parks

In her book, Fish Creek Provincial Park – A Guide to Canada’s Largest Urban Park, the author, Anna Robertson, provides an insight into how the waterway, agot its name. When John Glenn arrived in the valley, he was probably told that the creek was called ‘Siokame,’ meaning ‘black fish.’ The waterway soon became known as Black Fish Creek. Over time the name was shortened to Fish Creek, which we still use today. It has long been a destination for recreationalists of all ages in the city’s south end, Sikome (si-KO-me) Aquatic Facility, also known as Sikome Lake, is one of the most popular sites in the entire Alberta Park’s system.

Sikome Lake Fees

Day Season Pass Pass

Family

$10 $100

Persons with disabilities

$2 $25

Adult (18-64)

$5 $50

Senior (65+)

$4 $40

Child (6-17)

$3 $30

Child (0-5)

Free Free

(2 adults and children at the same residence) (aides enter for free)

Season’s passes can be purchased in advance at albertaparks.ca/sikome.

Sikome offers plenty of opportunities for aquatic fun and a family-friendly atmosphere. It is especially popular with young families on hot days. Sightings of water fowl and beavers are common in the area, so make sure to bring your camera. In 2016, small user fees were introduced, with proceeds going back into capital investment in the facility itself, such as: - Reopening the south side of the lake and increasing the number of Aquatic Safety Staff - Upgrading washroom and change facilities - Extending the swimming season to include the Labour Day weekend - Improving accessibility for persons with disabilities In 2017, the Sikome Aquatic Facility will be open June 24th to September 4th (weather dependent), from 10:00am to 7:30pm daily (9:00pm on Friday and Saturday nights). Access is via Bow Bottom Trail or Sun Valley Blvd. Parking is free. Services include concession, showers, change rooms, picnic areas, play grounds as well as bike racks. There is even a beach wheelchair for loan. Also, this year Food Trucks are coming to Sikome so bring an appetite! Check out what’s new this year or visit Alberta Park’s Sikome Aquatic Facility at albertaparks.ca/sikome to see more details.

30 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Experience Fish Creek Provincial Park Memorial Forest Program As you walk and ride through the park, you may notice areas set aside for this program and wonder what it’s all about. The Memorial Forest program began in 1996 as joint venture between Fish Creek Provincial Park and McInnis & Holloway Funeral Homes. It provides families with a meaningful way to deal with the loss of a loved one. A tree planted will remain a living memorial to which family and friends can return every year. Over the years, this program has expanded to other areas of the city and more than 40,000 trees have been planted to date. McInnis & Holloway is responsible for the maintenance of the forest. Throughout the spring and summer they apply 30,000 litres of water each day to ensure the health and longevity of the trees. For more information on the Memorial Forest Program visit mhfh.com.

Experience the Rotary Nature Park The Rotary Club of Calgary Chinook developed and maintains a very special 40 acre (16 hectare) place in the southeast corner of Fish Creek Provincial Park. This unique project is described as a Nature Park because the land was used for years as a gravel pit prior to being reclaimed to its original natural state. The park now contains engineered wetlands, ponds, and a trail system to allow visitors to enjoy a variety of wildflowers and native plant species. The wetlands attract waterfowl and upland birds, making this park the perfect sanctuary for bird watching. To enhance your enjoyment of the park 5 gazebo shelters and several park benches were constructed. The Park is located adjacent to the Bow River and south of Hwy 22X. A trail in Cranston enables you to walk down to the park. Cyclists can ride south from Sikome Lake to the east side of the river. This Nature Park is also easily accessed via McKenzie Meadows Dr to a paved parking lot. Visit rotarychinook.org. 31 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience Kananaskis Country Photo Courtesy of Dwain Mueller

Photo Courtesy ofTanya Koob

Located half an hour west of the city, Kananaskis Country has become a cherished location for Calgarians to spend time with friends and family, to hike, ride, and be active year-round. Dedicated in 1978, this 4,200 km2 recreation area has grown into a place where people from around the world renew their spirit and reconnect with wilderness. The name Kananaskis was chosen more than 150 years ago to name the lakes, valley, and river visited by Captain John Palliser on his expedition through the area. It comes from the Cree ‘Kin-e-a-kis’ and is said to be the name of a warrior who survived an axe blow to the head. Evidence of human use of Kananaskis Country goes back over 8,000 years, and the Stoney-Nakoda, Siksika, Blood, and Kootenai First Nations all have deep connection to this land.

To learn more about these fossils and more, refer to our sister publication titled Experience the Dinosaur Trails. The evidence is seen in ancient coral reefs, oyster beds, and shark teeth throughout Kananaskis. The u-shaped valleys and jagged peaks are 12,000 year-old reminders of the last ice age, revealed million-year old glaciers that have since melted. The government invests in parks as a key part of our province’s quality of life. You can anticipate comfortable facilities, such as the William Watson Lodge and the Canmore Nordic Centre, a continued commitment to wildlief management and public safety, and vibrant interpretive and education programs. All without an admission fee!

For more information about Alberta’s rich western roots, pick up a free copy of our sister publication titled Experience the Cowboy Trails or visit ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Library.

In 2013, the provincial government committed $76 million to restore trails, campgrounds, and day-use areas in Kananaskis that were damaged during the unprecedented flooding that occurred in June of that year.

The actual mountains were formed over the past 200 million years as tectonic plates forced layers of rock to pile, break, and fold into mountains. The rock comes from layers of fossilized sea creatures that lived hundreds of millions of years ago in an inland sea that once covered southern Alberta.

Kananaskis Country is open for business. For your own safety, please refer to the maps in this publication and discuss your plans with the friendly staff in the Kananaskis Visitor Info Centres. While there, ask for a copy of their free trail maps or purchase a detailed GemTrek map.

32 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Campground Directory Bow River 12 Three Sisters Lac Des Arcs 5,6 Bow Valley 5,6,9,17 Willow Rock 5,9,12,16 Sundance Lodge Mt. Kidd R.V. Park 1,5,6,19 Eau Claire 5,12 Sibbald Lake 5,7 Dawson Equestrian Canyon 5,7 Elkwood 5,6,7,9,17 Boulton Creek 6,7,9,16,17 Lower Lake 5,13 Mt. Sarrail 12 Interlakes Spray Lakes West 7,12 Beaver Flats Gooseberry 5 Little Elbow 6 Little Elbow Equest. 4,6 McLean Creek 5,6,9,18 Paddy’s Flat 5 Mesa Butte Equest. 4 North Fork Fisher Creek Bluerock Bluerock Equest. 4 Sandy McNabb 5,18 Sandy McNabb Equest. 4,18 Cataract Creek Etherington Creek 6 Etherington Creek Equest. 4 Green Ford Indian Graves Regular 5,10,11,14 Indian Graves Equestrian 3,5,10,11,14 Strawberry Regular & Equestrian 4 Burnt Timber 7 Fallen Timber South 7 North Ghost 7 Waiparous Creek 7 Ghost Reservoir 2 Red Deer River North 7 Red Deer River South 7 James-Wilson 7,15, Fallen Timber North 7 Cartier Creek 7,

Apr. 29 | Sept. 25 Apr. 8 | Nov. 20 Apr. 29 | Sept. 5 Apr. 29 | Oct. 10 Apr. 1 | Oct. 25 May 20 | Sept. 18 Year round June 3 | Sept. 5 Apr. 29 | Oct. 10 Year round June 17 | Sept. 5 May 13 | Oct. 10 May 13 | Oct. 10 May 18 | Sept. 18 June 24 | Sept. 5 May 18 | Oct. 10 May 18 | Sept. 18 May 15 | Sept. 9 Apr 29 | Oct. 11 May 15 | Sep. 19 May 15 | Sep. 19 Year round May 9 | Sept. 19 May 15 | Sept. 12 May 15 | Sept. 12 Year round May 15 | Sept. 19 May 15 | Sept. 19 Apr. 29 | Oct. 11 Apr. 29 | Oct. 11 May 18 | Sept. 5 May 18 | Sept. 25 May 18 | Sept. 25 May 18 | Sept. 5 May 19 | Sept. 5 May 19 | Sept. 5 Sept. 5 | Nov. 30 May 1 | Sept. 9 May 1 | Oct. 14 May 1 | Oct. 14 May 1 | Oct. 14 May 1 | Oct. 15 May 1 | Sept. 16 May 1 | Sept. 16 May 1 | Sept. 16 May 1 | Oct. 14 May 1 | Sept. 16

Spring Hill RV Park, Cochrane springhillrvpark.com | 403-932-2010 Open Year Round | 121 Sites | Fees: $42 Ammenities: Flush Toilets, Showers, Sani Dump, Disabled Access, Firepits Located 7km north of Cochrane. See page 51 for more information.

Coyote Creek Golf & RV Resort, Sundre coyotecreekresort.ca | 1-855-638-2450 Open Year Round | 40 Sites | Fees: $45 Ammenities: Flush Toilets, Showers, Sani Dump, Disabled Access, Firepits You get the best of both worlds here at Coyote Creek, play golf all day and stay at your very own recreational property at night enjoying a campfire and the peace and tranquility of the resort.

Adanac Adventures, Crowsnest Pass adanacadventures.com | 403-399-2331 Open Year Round | 10 Sites | Fees: $25 Ammenities: Firepits 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

$26 39 $26 36 $26 28 $26/$39 173 131 • • $26/$33 158 34 • • $31.50 30 • • $32.50/41/43/48 229 74 35 88 • • $26 51 $26 134 $26 10 $26 50 $26/$39 130 69 • • $26/$39 118 35 • • $26 104 $26 44 tent $26 48 $26 50 $26 55 $26 85 $26 94 $32 46 $26/$33 170 96 • • $26 98 $32 15 $26 34 $26 30 $26 66 $32 17 $33 112 112 • • $39 20 20 • • $26 102 $26 61 $32 10 $26 13 $26 32 $26 6 $26/$32 18 $308 30 $308 55 $308 169 $308 53 $26 80 $308 14 $308 50 $308 17 $308 34 $20 12

Discount of 10% to all senior citizens (65 years and older). Discount of $2.00 to Alberta seniors. Plus $6.00 per corral (will accommodate 2 horses). Price includes fee for two horses, each additional horse $6.00. Playground available. Reservations taken with $12.00 reservation fee (includes GST). Opening dates subject to snow levels. Price includes firewood.

9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14.

Coin operated showers available. Firewood for sale off service vehicle. Off season reservations may be considered. Food lockers available for cyclists. Walk-in tenting sites closed. Reservation fees is $ 5. Cancellation policy: no refunds but reschedule to another date without additional costs, provided notification received for weekends before Friday noon.

33 | Enter33 our| ExperienceTravelGuides.com Photo Contest & Reader Survey

• • • • • • (28) • • • • (156) • • • • • (30) • • • • (229) • • • • • • • • (130) • • • (118) • • • • • • • • (41) • • (24) • • • • (170) • • • • • • • • • • • • • (29) • • • • • • (32) • • • (6) • • • • (35) • • (90) • • (25) • • • • (20) • • (17) • • •

403-673-2163 403-673-2163 1-877-537-2757 1-877-537-2757 403-673-2163 403-591-7122 403-591-7700 403-591-7226 403-673-2163 403-673-2163 403-591-7226 1-877-537-2757 1-877-537-2757 403-591-7226 403-591-7226 403-591-7226 403-591-7226 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 1-877-537-2757 1-877-537-2757 1-877-537-2757 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-591-7226 1-877-537-2757 403-591-7226 403-591-7226 403-995-5554 403-995-5554 403-591-7226 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-851-0766 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-637-2198

Clearwater Trading, Caroline clearwatertrading.ca | 403-722-2378 Open Year Round | 47 Sites | Fees: $25-$35 Ammenities: Flush Toilets, Showers, Sani Dump, Firepits Proud to offer you a separate, private venue for all your events’ needs. Call us today! Check us out on Facebook @ clearwatertradingevents

15. 16. 17. 18. 19.

Reservation ONLY. Power is 15 amp only. Discount for 2nd unit in a power and water site is $4/day. Discount for 2nd unit in a power site is $2/day. All reservation changes are subject to a non-refundable change fee of $5. All open dates and prices subject to change


Experience Kananaskis Country

For up to date seasonal trail maps ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Library

Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park

Campground directory pg 33

34 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Experience Kananaskis Country

35 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Hiking Planning and Safety Whether getting out for the day or backpacking for a week in the backcountry, good planning and following some key safety rules are critical for an enjoyable outing. Often the biggest mistakes and injuries are caused by poor planning. Four key areas are: Location preparation, Skill preparation, Gear preparation and finally Safety preparation.

Photo Courtesy of Mark Burden

1. Location Preparation The hiking location is the tell-all for the next 3 categories. Where you go will affect every other decision regarding your time outside. Things to consider: • How remote is the location? Is it close to civilization or a lengthy drive down a gravel road? • What will the weather be like at that location? Is there any avalanche hazard in the area? Both Avalanche.ca and weatheroffice.gc.ca are helpful sources. If you know the exact mountain region, visit mountain-forecast.com. • Are there animal warnings or closures? Do you know wildlife safety? If not, then Parks Canada and Alberta Parks are great resources. • Have you been to the region before or is this entirely new to you or the people in your group? • Have you researched the place you plan to go? • Is there communication in the region? If not, do you have a SPOT or Delorme InReach emergency device? In the backcountry these devices are invaluable. • Do you have a map of the area? If not, then purchasing one and learning how to read a map can be very valuable on any hiking trip. A GPS is useful, however, always pack extra batteries for it.

2. Skill Preparation Your own skills, training, knowledge and experience are other important factors to consider. Be extremely honest with yourself! If you over estimate your personal abilities the trip can quickly become dangerous. The following questions are ones you should ask yourself anytime you plan on going into the wilderness: • Am I physically fit enough to do this hike? If not, do I have time to train and can I realistically meet that goal? • Do I have any health concerns? Health concerns MUST be mentioned to everyone in your group and medication MUST be brought along as a backup. • Am I pushing my abilities on this outing? If so, ask yourself if your are capable of this? • How am I in an emergency situation and can I handle an emergency if needed? Finally, one of the most important skills to have is the ability to TURN BACK if needed. Once you have spent all the time and effort to get somewhere, if you then decide it is unsafe to proceed then going back is the right course of action. However, this can be an extremely difficult thing to do.

36 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Hiking Planning and Safety

3. Gear Preparation Having the proper equipment will ensure you can go hiking in the first place. Depending on your trip, the equipment will change depending on a number of variables. That said, there is some gear that should ALWAYS be in your bag: • First aid kit: size based on your training and the outing. • Water: at least 1L for any outing. • Water purification: essential for removing harmful micro-organisms from mountain streams. • Food and snacks: you burn many calories when hiking, so plan for this. • Repair kit: duct tape, backpack buckles, shoe laces, and a multi-tool are important to have. • Fire starter: lighters with matches as a backup. • Rain gear: jacket, pants, and gaiters • Sun protection: sunglasses, sunscreen, and a hat. • Illumination: headlamp with extra batteries. • Bear spray: essential to know how to use it properly. • Navigation: map and compass along with proper training. • Shelter: bothy bag or hiking tarp. • Sanitation: toilet paper, hand sanitizer.

4. Safety Preparation Once you have assessed the three previous categories, then a safety plan will be the final essential. Bad weather, injuries or navigational issues sometimes happen regardless of planning. A proper safety plan can help those at home assist if you are having trouble during your outing. • Tell friends/family where you are going with detailed information on your route. • Give exact times when you are leaving and returning. • Once you return, notify them immediately. If you do not contact them an hour after you are supposed to, then they need to initiate an emergency plan. Contacting the authorities of the area will be important. Keeping all of these factors in mind every time you plan on going out, will help you have a safe and enjoyable time in the wilderness - for many years to come. By: Justin Howse

Proper clothing is also critical. Cotton should be avoided for all hikes, as it does not dry easily. With hypothermia being one of the bigger risks for a hiker, clothes that take time to dry do not help with this. Pants are generally better than shorts, as there are plenty of plants and rocks waiting to cut your legs. A toque, gloves, warm sweater and/or down jacket are also good to bring along on mild days. Having quick drying layers that do not cause you to sweat will make your day much more fun. 37 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park It’s 6:30 am - fifteen minutes, or so, before sunrise - I grab my pack and hit the trail that descends into the heart of Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park. To my left a dazzling sky explodes with orange-red hues. Beneath the striking color the downtown skyscrapers of Calgary make an impressionable silhouette. Ten minutes later I find myself on top of Yodel Trail and admire the panoramic scene. To the west chiseled tips of the Rockies are washed in early-morning light. Below me a train thunders through the morning mist and disappears into the valley fog. Deer scamper through a fescue-covered gully and gather on the crest of a hill. They stop and I manage to shutter a few images before they, too, disappear into the fog. Officially opened to the public on Aug 9th, 2011, the Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park is a 1300 ha jewel that many outdoor enthusiasts have been, and will be, enjoying for years to come. The park is located 34 km northwest of downtown Calgary and just 4 km from Cochrane. Sold to the Government of Alberta in 2006 by the Harvie Family for roughly half of what it was worth to developers, the park encompasses a pristine swath of rolling, glacier-carved grassland along the Bow River Valley. It’s classic Alberta ranchland, bursting with beauty, abundant with wildlife, and rich with history. Discovering this place is bound to bring many surprises to firsttime visitors. For starters, native peoples once corralled bison in these coulees and established tipi camps near the river. There are a number of visible remnants, including tipi rings, cairns, and arrowheads, that have been discovered in the park. Thanks to the many initiatives of the Glenbow Ranch Park Foundation, archaeology – as well as many other educational and cultural programs - play a key role here. The park is home to the once flourishing village of Glenbow. Established in the early 1900s, all that remains of the ghost

town is the old, dilapidated store. Although you can’t go inside it, its prominent position beside the railway tracks certainly adds to the charm of the park. The park also includes other ruins, mainly remnants of mansions and ranch buildings built by wealthy Americans who settled here and started the nearby rock quarry. Interestingly, many buildings in both Calgary and Edmonton, including the Alberta Legislature, were built with sandstone from the Glenbow Quarry. When the quarry closed in 1912 the town of Glenbow soon died. One of Alberta’s most notable philanthropists, Eric Harvie (he founded the Glenbow Museum, among many other notable contributions) purchased the land in 1933 and it has remained in the family ever since. However, in 2006, following in the footsteps of their generous grandfather, the family decided to sell the land to the Alberta Government to ensure it would be protected and enjoyed by future Albertans. Unquestionably, enjoying the park is easy. The natural beauty, especially in the early or late-day hours when low-angled light illuminates the grasses and provides definition to the heaving hillsides, will be etched on your mind for a long time. From the many high points and lookouts on the trails, the vistas are absolutely stunning and nature photographers will have a hay day - as I did on the morning I visited! There are 25 km of recreational pathways in the park (both paved and shale) that cyclists and those on foot can enjoy. In the future, the Glenbow Trail, which will be part of the Trans Canada Trail, will link Calgary with Cochrane, offering outdoor enthusiasts a wonderfully scenic tour through the Bow Valley corridor. Portions of this pathway have already been completed (from the park to Cochrane) and the remaining section connecting to Calgary (through Haskayne Park) is in the planning stages.

38 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


The 2.3 km circuit known as the Yodel Loop is one of the most stunning trails in the park. It quickly ascends to the ridge and definitely has “wow” factor. The exposed nature of the trail (approx half the trail traverses the top of the bluff while the other half meanders through a pretty aspen grove) make for a memorable little journey. To top it off, the interpretive trail also incorporates a number of interesting and informative signs that provide insight into the park’s history and biodiversity.

As I head back up the hill to the quaint ridge-top visitor info centre, I turned for one last look at the beautiful Alberta foothills scene before me. Try as I might, I just couldn’t resist snapping a few more photos. Something tells me, in the years to come, I will not be the only person to get “trigger happy” in these parts. I am wholly convinced that this park is a very special place. Photos and Story By: Andrew Penner

39 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience Winter in Kananaskis

Photo Courtesy of Andrew Penner

Not a snowbird? Time to discover the best reason to spend the winter in your backyard! Cross-country skiing is a great way to enjoy the sunshine and great outdoors all winter long. The peace, the majesty of the forest, the graceful glide of your skis over snow, yes, the joy is impossible to fully appreciate til you try it for yourself. You will never envy snowbirds again!

for less than renting a bike and helmet. You can purchase the right equipment from expert ski fitters who will make sure your equipment is optimally suited to your size and ability. Like any sport, getting started on the right foot makes for a great day.

If you haven’t skied befor a lesson is a great way to get started. After all, just being Canadian doesn’t mean you know how to cross-country ski! It’s certainly more than walking on skis, but it’s not running either. It’s a graceful glide that’s in between the two. When done well, the feeling is magical!

Waxed skis or waxless skis?  Both are very easy to learn on. The waxless skis are best for Chinooks and spring skiing. They have great grip on the uphill but are slower downhill. They are easy and safe for the novice skier. The technology has come a long way and there are high-end waxless skis for the days that wax just isn’t working! Talk with the experts to help make the best gear choices for you.

Cross-Country skiing is healthy fun for people of all ages. No line ups, no crowds, fresh air, gentle on the knees and easy to learn. What could be better than a day outside with friends skiing in West Bragg Creek or Peter Lougheed Provincial Park!

Don’t let the winter blues get you down this year! Conditions such as depression can be associated with not getting enough sunshine. But winter can be a wonderland of beauty, fun, and vitamin D! Cross-country skiing can help make this happen.

There are many great clubs, expert shops, and places to sign up for lessons in the Calgary area. You can rent the equipment

Cross-country skiing is accessible. If you like to bring your own lunch in your day pack and eat on the trails, then there are

40 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Cross-Country Skiing 101 lots of options for your exciting day of skiing. Peter Lougheed Provincial Park has over 70km of groomed and track-set cross-country trails available at no charge. The trails range from beginner to advanced, so check the maps and be sure you are on the right trail. If you want to bring your lunch and eat inside, then Pocaterra Hut and the Peter Loughheed Provincial Park Visitor’s Centre are great half-way options for your indoor lunch stop. For options even closer to the city of Calgary here are a couple of places that won’t steer you wrong: 1. The Greater Bragg Creek Trails Association (GBCTA) has made cross-country skiing more accessible in West Bragg Creek! There are lots of beginner to intermediate trails. However, you’ll want to get started early as parking is often an issue at the trailhead, which is located approximately 15 minutes west of Bragg Creek. 2. Ribbon Creek in Kananaskis has great groomed and trackset trails and is 20 minutes closer to Calgary than Peter Lougheed. This is a beautiful, and often very quiet spot that is ideal for families.

Let us introduce you to the trails Beginner cross-country ski lessons held in Calgary, Bragg Creek & Peter Lougheed Provincial Park. Affordable gear rentals and programs for the whole family in all seasons. Visit our website for more. ucalgary.ca/outdoorcentre 403.220.5038

PROGRAMS PROGRAMS||TRIPS TRIPS||RENTALS RENTALS

If you like to eat lunch in a café there are 2 more cross-country ski options waiting for you: 1. Canmore Nordic Centre is a renowned facility complete with a great selection of healthy lunch foods. Trail fees apply as the crews keep this facility in tip-top shape! 2. Kananaskis Village near the Nakiska Ski Resort and above Ribbon Creek area is the Kananaskis Village. Behind the village is the trailhead for the beautiful cross-country ski trails up on the terrace. Great groomed and track-set trails take you in large and small loops above Ribbon Creek and back to the village for lunch in one of the great cafes in any of the three lodges. Families can cross-country ski or downhill ski close together and meet up at the end of the day to share stories. Trail conditions are weather and temperature dependant Regardless of where you are in Alberta, it’s easy to get out cross-country skiing this winter. Consider taking a lesson and, if you’re renting gear, make sure you get a good fit. And, of course, have fun meeting all those converted snowbirds out there on the trails! By: Julie Walker Cross-country ski instructor & outdoor educator: info@fullcircleadventures.com

Download our Kananaskis Trail Maps to your mobile device

ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Library

41 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience Highwood and Cataract Area Highwood and Cataract Creek are both located 35 km west of Longview on Hwy 541. Planning ensures that recreation, timber harvesting, cattle grazing, and oil and natural gas extraction can all take place with minimum conflict. These areas offer great fishing and camping experiences and numerous hiking and equestrian trails. In the winter explore by snowmobile on designated trails. Easy Hikes off the Highwood Trail cmipublishing.ca/i/307806/52.

Parks & Protected Areas Office Group Camping Store Camping (Tent Only) Camping (Vehicle Access) Day Use Area Public Telephone Equestrian Facility Snow Vehicle Zone Gas Station Interpretive Trail

EMERGENCY If you require Fire, Ambulance, Police, or Mountain Rescue assistance, call 9-1-1. Tell the operator you have an emergency in Kananaskis Country.

3 40

0

20

40

N

60

30 0

0 32

NE

SW

SE

80

28 0

NW

W

E

260

10 0

240

12 0 0 14

S 160

42 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey

1 80

22 0 200


Experience Peter Lougheed Provincial Park It is easy to understand why this park is so popular with Calgarians. Straddling Hwy 40 and 742, it boasts some of the finest camping and wilderness hiking experiences in the Canadian Rockies. Hundreds of kms of hiking and mountain biking trails await your summer exploration. In the winter, rediscover them on snow shoes. Four Easy Hikes: dig.cmipublishing.ca/i/124265/32

Boat Launch Canoe Launch Camping (Tent Only) Camping (Vehicle Access) Day Use Area Interpretive Trail Dumping Station Equestrian Facility Group Camping Motel/Hotel Visitor Information Centre Restaurant Universal Accessibility Amphitheatre Fishing Store

3 40

0

20

40

N

60

30 0

0 32

NE

SW

SE

80

28 0

NW

W

E

260

10 0

240

12 0 0 14

S 160

43 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

1 80

22 0 200


Experience Brown-Lowery

This sweet park has stunning views of the Rocky Mountain front ranges to the west as well as vistas of downtown Calgary to the northeast. The habitat is moist and easily damaged, so walk lightly and stick to the trails. It really matters in this sensitive environment. An old Spruce forest protects the floor from the sun and allows the amazing plant varieties to grow in this foothills oasis. This makes the park a mysterious deep-woods adventure. Cool plant species include: Mares Tails, Western Canadian Violet, One-flowered Wintergreen and many Fungi species. Like so many native species, the one-flowered wintergreen depends on a particular fungus growing in the moist, humusrich forest floor of this park - where the Spruce provide the necessary shade. A fun way to zoom into the forest floor and discover the diverse species growing there is to take the kids on a wintergreen plant hunt to tally up how many you see. Try using your binoculars backwards, looking through the wrong end of the lens, and zero in on fungus and other small plants it actually magnifies them and looks really cool! There are 12 km of trails in the park. Families can choose from at least 8 different loops from a 1 km route to the full 12 km tour. If your little ones love exploring the forest floor, you can search for wildlife clues like forest animal homes, critter trails,

chewed up logs, scat and tracks - all waiting for the kids to discover. Many species of wildlife live here including deer, moose, elk, lynx, bush bunnies, weasel, cougar, squirrels, owls and many species of birds. The Park is located approximately 50 km southwest of Calgary. Access is via Hwy 22x and Hwy 22 until you get to Plummers Road then head west and southwest just over 11 km. The small parking lot is easy to miss and although the road is paved it’s windy so drive with care. From 1896 to 1915 logging took place on a portion of this property. Many of the hiking trails are old logging roads. The old building in the park is the remains of a small lumber camp and sawmill. If you make it to the meadow on Old Sawmill loop with your 8-year-old or older, it is a great site to explore and imagine how people did things in the old days of early settlement in Alberta. This type of history is part of the Grade 5 curriculum, so you can be part of your child’s schooling at this hands-on-learning spot. Home Oil Company Ltd ran seismic surveys in the 1950’s looking for oil and gas. The seismic lines, like the old logging roads, are now trails in the park. The park is named for the Home Oil founder Major James Lowery and subsequent partner, and company president, Robert A. Brown. The company

44 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


A Gem of a Provincial Park To Cochrane

Brown-Lowery Provincial Park

To Elbow Valley

To Sheep River Provincial Park

donated the land to the government of Alberta in 1969 with the understanding it be kept in its natural state. In 1992 it was designated Brown-Lowery Provincial Park. Brown-Lowery is a great place to explore eco-system variety from grasslands (including native fescue and wildflowers at the lookout) and Aspen groves on the ridge, to mature Spruce and small creeks in the valley bottoms. Because of this variety of plant communities Brown-Lowery is a great spot for wildflower enthusiasts, birders, and those who love the Fungi and mushrooms. Truly a fun family hideaway that is cool and shady on those hot summer days - everyone will find something to explore at this gem of a park. Due to the nature of the Montane eco-system it is a good mix of boggy areas, coniferous and deciduous trees, along with mosses and gently rolling hills. It can be moist and muddy at any time of year and due to the shade the trails can be icy or snowy from October to March so pack along snowshoes or ice trekkers. Photos and Story By: Julie Walker, outdoor educator and owner of Full Circle Adventures.

45 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience Sheep River Provincial Park Sheep River offers typical campgrounds as well as equestrian campgrounds. For more: “Experience Kananaskis Country on Horseback”, pg 18 of Experience the Cowboy Trails. Explore the trails and remember to bring your camera since you will likely see bighorn sheep or elk. Return in winter to explore the cross-country ski trails at Sandy McNabb. Sheep River is surrounded by Bluerock Wildland Provincial Park. Combined, they offer spectacular landscapes you can only explore on foot, horseback, or mountain bike. You’ll be rewarded with vast evergreen forests, breathtaking mountain vistas and the chance to experience true wilderness solitude.

Bow Valley straddles the Trans Canada Highway, just west of Hwy 40. It is the closest recreation area in Kananaskis Country for many Calgarians and features excellent camping sites as well as picnic tables on the banks of the Bow River with the stunning backdrop of Mount Yamnuska. Barrier Lake is a major attraction for water sports and hiking trails. Here you can stop and chat with the friendly staff at one of the two Info Centres in this park to get up-to-date trail reports, buy bear spray and detailed topographical maps, or download a mobile version of this magazine. Next stop? Be sure to check out the Mount Lorette Ponds!

3 40

0

20

40

N

60

30 0

0 32

NE 80

28 0

NW

W

E

260

10 0

SE

SW 240

12 0

160

1 80

22 0 200

46 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey

0 14

S


Experience Bow Valley Provincial Park

Boat Launch Canoe Launch Camping (Tent Only) Camping (Vehicle Access) Day Use Area Interpretive Trail Dumping Station Equestrian Facility Group Camping Motel/Hotel Visitor Information Centre 3 40

Restaurant

0

20

40

N

60

30 0

0 32

NE 80

28 0

NW

W

E

260

10 0

Universal Accessibility

SE

SW 240

12 0

22 0 200

Store

47 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

1 80

Fishing

160

Amphitheatre

0 14

S


Family-Friendly Bike Trails in Kananaskis The stereotype – mountain biking is an extreme activity – is all wrong! In fact, there are many easy family-friendly trails throughout Calgary, Kananaskis, and the mountain parks. True, if you want a white-knuckle thrill ride, you can certainly find that in the mountains. However, if you’re looking for a fun (for the whole family) ride in the mountains, Kananaskis is a prime spot. The Best Easy Bike Trails in Kananaskis for Families and Novice Riders:

Kovach Day Use Area and Wedge Pond in less than 2 hours at the pace of a 6 year-old so it’s easy riding! The trail climbs very gradually from the Kovach Day Use Area to Wedge Pond with a big hill that can be walked near the pond. The return is fast and young kids will enjoy doing the trail one-way in the downhill direction with a shuttle. Since this trail is paved, it is ideal for families pulling bike trailers or children learning to ride. And make sure you visit the Village after for some ice cream or for coffee and pastries from the café in the Delta Lodge.

The Paved Bike Trails of Peter Lougheed Provincial Park – 12 km one-way on the Lodgepole, Wheeler, and Lakeside

The Canmore Town Trails – 13-15 km of riding on easy gravel

trails off of Hwy 40. These three trails are paved with gradual hills that should be doable for most children. The odd steep hill can be walked and there are good signs in place when approaching a big hill. We like to get on the bike trails at the Boulton Creek Campground and ride one way to the Canyon Campground (mostly downhill riding) with a second vehicle waiting at the end. There’s a playground at Canyon and a fun little interpretive hiking trail that can be done if you’re waiting for somebody to go back for the car. These trails are great for families using a bike trailer. And the best part? Ice cream at the Trading Post at Boulton Creek Campground!

around the town. Pick up a map of the town trails from the Visitor Center on 7th Avenue and then head out to explore! We love the Blue Activity Loop (3.1 km) and my son loves riding over Engine Bridge. For a longer ride, we usually tackle the Green Activity Loop for another 4.4 km starting at Engine Bridge. Other highlights are the Millennium Park Pump Track and the West Canmore Playground. Park at the Millennium Park and ride to the playground in an easy 3 km round trip. All trails are gradual with minimum height gain as long as you stay down near the river. Trails are bike trailer-friendly and great for beginner riders.

Troll Falls – 3.2 km loop from the Stoney Trailhead which is near Kananaskis Village. Expect easy double-track riding on wide cross-country ski trails. While most people hike this trail, it is also an amazing family bike ride with some fun hills, a scenic ride through Hay Meadow, and a great destination to a set of waterfalls. For a trip that feels more down than up, ride through Hay Meadow first and make your way over to Troll Falls (parking your bikes for the final 0.3 km hike to the falls). From the Troll Falls Junction, take the Troll Falls Trail back to the Stoney Trailhead parking lot. Young kids may have to walk one hill in the upward direction on the Troll Falls Trail, but most of the ride is easy coasting downhill to the car. And if your family likes geocaching, don’t forget the GPS along with some fun trinkets to trade. This loop is full of caches! For families with tots, you can also use a bike trailer or Chariot for this ride.

Looking for More Challenge? The West Bragg Creek Trails are where it’s at for adults who want to explore Kananaskis by bike and can handle some challenging hills, single-track riding, and rougher terrain. Contact the Elbow Valley Visitor Information Centre for maps and trail information.

The Bill Milne Paved Bike Trail – 9.7 km one way path from Kananaskis Village off of Hwy 40 to Wedge Pond. You can avoid the big hill by starting at the Kovach Day Use Area by the highway. We rode the 17 km return distance between the

Advanced riders will also find what they are looking for at the Canmore Nordic Centre once you get off of the main Banff Trail, which is yet another easy ride in Kananaskis. Bikes and trailers are rented by Trail Sports at the Canmore Nordic Centre or from Kananaskis Outfitters located in the Village Centre. There are also rental shops in Canmore if you want to transport your bike to another trailhead. I can not wait to meet you on the trails this summer! I’ll be pedalling like a mad woman trying to keep up to my soon-to-be 7 year old and you’ll hear us screaming as we fly down the hills and scare all the bears away for you! Photos and Story by: Tanya Koob

48 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey


Family-Friendly Bike Trails in Kananaskis

Engine Bridge

Bill Milne Trail

Peter Lougheed Provincial Park Bike Trails

Troll Falls and Hay Meadow

Watridge Lake

49 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience Kananaskis Valley

3 40

0

20

40

N

60

30 0

0 32

NE

EMERGENCY

80

28 0

NW

W

E

260

10 0

SE

SW 240

12 0

If you require Fire, Ambulance, Police, or Mountain Rescue assistance, call 9-1-1. Tell the operator you have an emergency in Kananaskis Country.

0 14

S 160

50 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey

1 80

22 0

200


Experience Kananaskis Village The Kananaskis Valley has it all! Have a real western experience at Boundary Ranch, treat the kids to a heli tour, or spend a night at Sundance lodges in a real tipi, or enjoy one of the fine resorts in the region. Did you know that the Mt Kidd RV Park is open year round. Raft the Kananaskis River, bike the many paved and back country trails. Take a day hike to a waterfall or backpack into spectacular wilderness. Golfers will be pleased to learn that the Kananaskis Country Golf Course is now scheduled to reopen in 2018. For more check out Golfing in Kananaskis cmipublishing.ca/i/671104/70. Guide books, coffee, snacks, gifts and public washrooms can be found at Kananaskis Village retailers. No gear? Stop at Kananaskis Outfitters for all your clothing and rental needs.

Boat Launch

Skogan Pass Trail

Camping (Tent Only)

Stoney Trail

High Level Trail

Camping (Vehicle Access)

Ka nan

Day Use Area Downhill Ski Area

Ruthie’s Trail

Group Camping Equestrian Facility

Centennial Ridge Trail Coal Mine Trail

Gas Station Interpretive Trail

Stoney Ribbon Creek

Motel/Hotel

Restaurant

Ribbon Creek Trail

Link Trail

Amphitheatre 3 40

0

Terrace Trail

Kovach Trail

Kananaskis Village

20

40

N

60

30 0

0 32

ek

NE

SE

80

28 0

NW

SW

W

E

260

10 0

240

12 0

14

S

Mt. Lorette Ponds

Beaver Ponds Hay Meadow Trail

Kovach Pond

(Trail Damaged Closed)

re on C i bb

R

Store

0

160

1 80

22 0

20 0

Canoe Launch

Troll Falls Trail

Groups

Golf Course

Visitor Information Centre

Hidden Trail

40

Sundance Lodges

Nakiska Troll Falls

(Closure Period)

Hostel

Group Camping (Tent Only)

as kis

Sunburst Trail

Riv er

Come back in the winter for snowshoeing, cross-country, and downhill skiing at Nakiska. For free trail maps of the area visit ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Library

51 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

Kananaskis Emergency Services Centre Bill Milne Paved Trail


By: Moe Haimour By: Lynne Stephens By: Jeremy Klager

By: Christine van Hal

By: Denise Kitagawa

PHOTO CONTEST Submit your photo for a chance to WIN! ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Contests A Special Thank-you to our Sponsors:

For prize information and full contest details visit ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Contests

Profile for experiencetravelguides

2017 Experience Calgary  

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded