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FREE

EXPERIENCE 2019/2020

FREE

The Cowboy Trails

10 Helpful Map Pages Murder in the Old West Hat Buying Soapy Smith Craft Spirits Metis Culture Rodeo Schedule

Reader Contests


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Experience the Cowboy Trails Howdy Folks! You are about to embark on a fascinating journey into Canada’s Western Heritage. When I was a child, most kids played “Cowboys and Indians”. The cowboys had guns and holsters, a handkerchief we usually wore on our necks, but it also doubled as a mask, and a straw cowboy hat, complete with a whistle for some reason! The most popular shows on TV were Bonanza, Roy Rogers, Gunsmoke, The Lone Ranger, Maverick, Big Valley and Have Gun Will Travel. Clint Eastwood and John Wayne were the definition of not only a cowboy, but a real man.

now by Brad Pitt, Kevin Costner, Kurt Russell, Robert Duvall, and Jeff Bridges, and as evidenced by the immense popularity of the TV series Heartland, we are still fascinated by our western culture!

Times have changed. You don’t see very many kids running around with “cap guns” and it’s no longer politically correct to use the term “Indian”. Our western heroes are portrayed

To view or download this magazine to your mobile device, check out experiencetravelguides.com/library Bob Harris

Welcome to the seventh annual edition of Experience the Cowboy Trails, a visitor’s guide to the many unique western attractions and events in and around Alberta. Immerse yourself in the rich heritage you discover here. In the pages ahead, to aid you on your journey, you will find engaging stories, compelling images and maps, lots of maps: because everyone loves maps. We sincerely hope you have a magical time and are truly honoured to be of service.

Our Contributors

Andrew Penner is

Carmon Houle was

Renée Delorme’s

Rob Lennard (aka

Allen R. Gibson

an independent writer and photographer living in Calgary, Alberta. His work has been featured in Westworld, Westjet Magazine, Golf Magazine, Golf Tips, Golf Canada, and many leading golf and lifestyle publications. When not travelling or working, he enjoys reading, movies, and chilling out in the backyard with his wife, Dawn, and their four boys. (Craft Distilleries Booming in Alberta pg 18)

raised on the Métis Settlement of Paddle Prairie. Her mother is from Frog Lake First Nations and her father is from the Paddle Prairie Metis Settlement. They say there are two things we should give our children; one is wings, the other is roots. This speaks true to the foundations of her upbringing and personal attributes. (Metis Culture and History pg 52 )

passions brought her to Alberta in pursuit of a career as a government relations and community development specialist, bringing about positive social change. She is also a trained sommelier devoting her time to the art and science of wine. She does private tasting events and media work. tastingpleasures.ca.

The History Wrangler) is a Calgary based historian, singer, songwriter, award winning author, and performer. Rob is the Historian at The Ranche and is responsible for its educational programming and outreach. He is also the Coordinator for the Calgary & Region History Fair which is associated with the national Heritage School Fair program. (The Alberta Trail pg 54)

is a writer and tourism marketer who’s enjoyed Western Canadian road trips since childhood.

(Experience our Meaderies 21)

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Now, he shares that love of the west with visitors through his writing and custom guided tours. Reach him at EightStarTours@gmail.com

(Murder and Infidelity in the Old West pg 10)


Experience the Cowboy Trails Welcome to the 2019 - 2020 Edition of Experience The Cowboy Trails CMI Publishing is a div. of Complete Marketing Inc., a privately-owned company with offices in Calgary, Alberta. We specialize in the production of our Experience Travel Guides & Maps in both print and digital formats. Printed copies are delivered to our distribution outlets across the region. Travellers are encouraged to pick up a FREE printed copy through these outlets or use a mobile-friendly copy of this, or any of our current or archived guides from our Mobile Library at ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Library. Please support our advertisers and sponsors. If you get the chance, kindly mention where you saw their ad. Without their support this guide would not be possible. Publisher: Bob Harris Ph: (403) 259.8290 Bob@cmiPublishing.ca Designers: Christine Weston; christine@extenddesign.ca Kris Nielson; kris@krisdesign.ca

Book Keeper: Adrienne Albrecht; bookkeeper@cmispeakers.com Circulation: Free copies available through most Visitor Information Centres, AMA travel offices, retail stores, attractions, and hotels & motels throughout the region. For a complete list: experiencethecowboytrail.com/about-us

Cartographer: Rob Storeshaw, robstoreshaw@shaw.ca

Special Thanks to: Dan Clements, Holly Heuver, Lee Hart, Ian Klein, Warren Pearson, Karen Ung, Stuart Watkins, Dale, Kelly & Carla Schultz

Editor: Larry Thomas larrylt2solutions@gmail.com

Cover photo: Sierra West Cabins & Ranch Courtesy of Jeff Bartlett @photojbartlett

Advertising Sales Reps: Dan Clements; Dan@cmiPublishing.ca Allen Gibson; Allen@cmiPublishing.ca Joseph Macdonald; Joseph@cmiPublishing.ca

Share your Experience: Upload your selfies, photos and videos to be eligible to win great prizes: ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Contests

Leighton Art Centre 2019 Events May 31 Sunset Soirée Gala Fundraiser June 1-2 Clothesline Festival & Art Sale June 15 - October 6 Outdoor Installation: ‘Vital Lines’ September 28-29 Fall Paint-Out, Alberta Culture Days Celebration November 2-3 & 9-10 Christmas in the Country Art Sale

art, history & landscape ∙ ∙ ∙ ∙

Clothesline Festival

Exhibitions & Art Sale Gallery Shop June 1 - 2, 2019 Summer Camps Fall Paint-Out Sep 28 - 29, 2019 Workshops

∙ Festivals & Art Sales

Christmas in the Country Art Sale

Nov 2 - 3 & 9 - 10, 2019

Tuesday to Sunday, 10 am to 4 pm

(Winter Hours: Tues - Sat, Nov 11 - May 31)

Admission is Pay-What-You-Can

www.leightoncentre.org

282027 144 Street West, Foothills AB

5 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

Table of Contents Communities Balzac 2 Black Diamond (Diamond Valley) 16 Bragg Creek 38 Cardston 12 Cochrane 40-43 Crossfield 47 Longview & The Bar U Ranch 15 Mayerthorpe 56, 59 Millarville & Priddis 23 Pincher Creek 13 Rocky Mountain House 50, 56 Sundre 48, 50 Turner Valley (Diamond Valley) 17 Waterton 12

Specialty Pages Alberta’s History Wrangler 7 Alberta Open Farm Days 20 Calgary Stampede 60 Campground Directory 58 Craft Distilleries Booming in Alberta 18 Experience Chain Lakes Provincial Park 14 Experience Our Meaderies 21 Experience The Alberta Trail 54 Experience the Scenic Route 26 Farmers’ Markets 24 Golfing Along the Cowboy Trail 44 Metis Culture and History 52 Murder & Infidelity in the Old West 10 Reader Contests 35, 57 Road Cycling 22 Rodeo Schedule 49 Small Town Rodeos 48 “Soapy” Smith 36 TheCowboyTrail.com 6, 27-33 The Hat Makes the Cowboy 46 The Heart of the Cowboy Trail 50

Featured Map Pages Bragg Creek 39 Chain Lakes Provincial Park 14 Cochrane 41 Cowboy Trail 8 & 9 Edmonton & Area 5 Old Forts Trail 11


Experience the Cowboy Trail

Message from

The President Neil MacLaine Welcome to the Cowboy Trail! Highway 22, also known as The Cowboy Trail, is a scenic and historic connection for the towns, villages, and ranching communities of southern Alberta’s foothills. Western hospitality, adventure, antique shopping, National Historic Sites, whitewater rafting, and pristine wilderness can all be found on the Cowboy Trail. Take in a rodeo, a cowboy poetry gathering, a pow wow, or a farmer’s market. Explore the trail’s 700 kilometre length and visit the setting of many celebrated movies and television series. You can spend a few hours, a few days, or perhaps a lifetime exploring the trail’s hidden gems - there are no end of unique experiences to be had. The Cowboy Trail is the ultimate “scenic route,” offering a unique and unforgettable north-south alternative to Highway 2. For travellers looking to take a day trip or weekend getaway to explore Alberta, the Cowboy Trail is well connected to the cities of Lethbridge, Calgary, Red Deer, and Edmonton, as well as a network of engaging rural communities. Visit thecowboytrail.com to plan your own exploration of the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains. We look forward to seeing you out on the trail!

Sincerely,

Neil MacLaine President Cowboy Trail Tourism Association TheCowboyTrail.com Box 285 Bragg Creek, Alberta T0L 0K0 | 403-949-3329

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Experience the Cowboy Trail

The History Wrangler’s 2019 Cowboy Trail & Beyond Tour

New for 2019! • The History Wrangler Education & Fundraising Road Show “Combining Great Alberta History Programming & A Fun Family Fundraising Dance!” • The Aspen Crossing Railway’s “History Wrangler Education Express” • Girl Guides of Alberta Heritage Badge Program Contact The History Wrangler for more details: HistoryWrangler@gmail.com

The Historic Ranche at Fish Creek Provincial Park, The Home of Alberta’s History Wrangler

www.HistoryWrangler.com 7 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

A little bit about the History Wrangler Historian, Director of Education & Outreach, The Ranche Regional Coordinator- The Calgary & Region History Fair Canada’s History Liaison, Calgary Region Award Winning Historical Fiction Writer Song Writing Specializing in History Themed Songs Musician/Performer FNMI Programming

RANCHE THE

HISTORICAL LEARNING CENTRE


Experience the Cowboy Trail The Cowboy Trail Tourism Association was founded many years ago by ranchers, businesses and communities within southern Alberta’s foothills. Hwys 5, 6 & 22 became known as the Official Cowboy Trail. Together, they were promoted as the ultimate north-south “scenic route” in the province.

The Cowboy Trail is well connected to several major cities in Alberta as well as numerous rural communities. So in recent years, the focus has shifted beyond the trail, as folks from across Alberta come together to celebrate our western heritage.

8 | Enter Our Photo Contest

9 72

580

Crossfield

Carstairs

Cremona

579

Stoney

Water Valley

Sundre

22

582

Didsbury

27

2

27

582

587

734

584

Clearwater River

NATIONAL Kicking Horse Pass

93

Bow Pass

1

BANFF

Lake Louise

Panther River Red Deer River

AREA RECREATION Saskatchewan River Crossing

Ram River

Ram Falls

WILDLAND Cline River

RESERVE BIGHORN

734

North Saskatchewan River

11 Nordegg

Blackstone River

FOREST

Olds

Innisfail Glennifer Lake

54 752

591

Caroline

761

Sun Child Indian Reserve

O’Chiese Indian Reserve

620 734

Brazeau River

587

Red Deer River

22

Rocky Mountain House

53

12

11

Sylvan Lake

Sylvan Lake

Gull Lake

Rimbey

20 Buck Lake Indian Reserve

Alder Flats

Buck Lake

MOUNTAIN

Brazeau Reservoir

Buck Creek

620

Lodgepole

Bowden

42

590

595

2

Red Deer

Lacombe

11

12

21

27

21 53 Ponoka

2A

13 Buck Lake

Winfield

Pigeon Lake

Breton

39 47

16

611

26 Wetaskiwin

616 Millet

Devon

770 Drayton Valley Pembina River

753

ROCKY

16 Edson

748

McLeod River

751

Chip Lake

2

Leduc

21 19

North Saskatchewan River

60

Evansburg

22

Entwistle

Wabamun Lake

Wabamun

Wabamun Indian Reserve

16

Spruce Grove

37 Lac Ste. Anne Isle Lake

757

623

16 14

to Lloydminster

Edmonton

15 Morinville Alaska

43 Highway

Sangudo

Rochfort Brock Bridge Lake

647

Mayerthorpe

751 32

to Drumheller

We embrace this change. This vision provides travellers with a scenic and historic connection to ranching communities, western hospitality, pristine wilderness, antique shopping, parks, National and Provincial Historic Sites, and adventure. It’s the perfect day trip or weekend getaway!

Take in a rodeo, a cowboy poetry gathering, a pow wow, or a farmer’s market. Explore “The Trail’s” 700 km length and visit the setting of many movies and TV series. You can spend a few hours, days, or a lifetime exploring the trail’s hidden gems.


SW

NW

0

S

N

SE

NE

20

40

E

12 0

Highwood River

Crowsnest Pass

549

541

9 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com 3

507

Castle River

2

6

3

Glenwood

Waterton River

507

Brocket

Peigan Indian Reserve

Pincher Creek

785

Granum

520

2 505

810

U.S.A.

Waterton

2

17

89

CANADA

WATERTON 5 LAKES NATIONAL Mountain View PARK 6

Blood Indian Reserve

Stand Off

Fort Macleod

Oldman River

to Lethbridge

520

Hillspring Cardston Twin Butte 800

Cowley

529

to Medicine Hat

9

to Drumheller

23

Stavely

Claresholm

510

Oldman River

547

Bow River

Nanton

Willow Creek

533

540

HILLS

RESERVE

774

Beaver Mines

1

High River

Okotoks

783

Lundbreck

FOREST

Crowsnest River

9

Calgary

567

PORCUPINE

22

517

Chain Lakes

MOUNTAIN

ROCKY

734

532

543

7

72 Airdrie

Longview

Turner Valley

Eden Valley Indian Reserve

546

Black Diamond

549

22X

Priddis Millarville

762

8

Sarcee Indian Reserve

22

1A

Cochrane

ALBERTA

Sheep River

Elbow River

66

40

1

Bragg Creek

BRITISH COLUMBIA

Highwood Pass

KANANASKIS COUNTRY

40

Kananaskis River

742

Morley

Stoney Indian Reserve

1A

580 Crossfield

567

Cremona

Stoney Indian Reserve

Waiparous 40

Bow River

PARK

Canmore

Banff

579

Water Valley

2 Carstairs

To ensure your Pow Wow is included please send details to info@experiencetravelguides.com

For more information, check out ExperienceTheCowboyTrail.com

Bronze Statues by Studio West

22 0

W

3 40

200

0 32

BRITISH COLUMBIA

1

ALBERTA

NATIONAL

93

Lake Louise

Vermillion Pass

100

1 80

30 0

1

60

1 60

28 0

Kicking Horse Pass

0 14

260

80

2 40

734

Experience the Cowboy Trail

Be sure to watch for the Pow Wow Schedule in the 2020 edition.

Complete our reader survey on pg 35 for a chance to win new boots!


Murder and Infidelity in The Old West

The NWMP detachment in Pincher Creek 1895. Sgt. W.B. Wilde is seated, center. Photo Courtesy of Kootenai Brown Pioneer Village

In our last edition, we ran this photo stating it was a detachment of North West Mounted Police from Fort McLeod. A reader let us know the photo was, in fact, of the Pincher Creek detachment. Little did we realize, when we asked our reader Bill Bradshaw how he knew about the photo’s origins, what an amazing story of lust, murder and betrayal would unfold!

out he went on a rampage, taking pot shots at authorities, including a constable near Cardston, and wounding several. He also began bragging to many of his tribe that he intended to kill both the Indian Agent and Red Crow, the chief of the Blood Tribe. The manhunt went on for several months but the warrior eluded both NWMP officers and native trackers.

Bill, it turns out, is a 27-year veteran of the force we know today as the RCMP, and Pincher Creek was his post in the late 1960s. “We had five policemen then,” he says, “and in my years there I never wore a gun. I knew all the people on the reserve, and they were tremendous people.”

In his memoir, A. L. Freebairn of Pincher Creek recalls John Herron, who went on to be the area’s Member of Parliament, tell the story of “following the trail down a narrow ravine into one of the river bottoms, when he noticed Charcoal standing in the brush on one side with his gun leveled right at them. Whispering to his men not to look around, they passed safely out of range. Charcoal got away again.” [2]

In the 1890’s, however, it was a different story. One that led, ultimately, to the murder of the man seated in the middle of our photo, Sergeant Brock Wilde. In 1896, a Blood Indian named Si’okskitsis (aka Charcoal) was working to supply hay to the NWMP when he discovered one of his wives was having an affair with her cousin – a wellknown lothario from the tribe. Such a thing was taboo in the Blood society, and Charcoal demanded that they stop. The two lovers refused to end the affair and when Charcoal found them together again, he shot the man and left him for dead. Fearing that he would be executed by the white man’s justice system, Charcoal went on the run. Instead of merely hiding

When Sergeant Wilde heard the fugitive had been spotted near Pincher Creek, he joined the pursuit with several native scouts, catching up with Charcoal five days later near what is now the Shell Canada complex just north of Waterton Park. The sergeant approached with his pistol drawn. It was not enough. “When the policeman got within eight feet, Charcoal turned on his horse and fired a rifle that was partially concealed under his blanket. Shot through the lung, Wilde fell from his horse and lay on the ground. When Charcoal saw Wilde move slightly, he jumped off his horse, stood over the fallen policeman and shot him again, point blank, in the

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Murder and Infidelity in The Old West

72

after 27 years in

Drumheller DRUMHELLER

9

10

FORT CALGARY

the RCMP and

9

570

ALBERTA SASKATCHEWAN

Edmonton

Bill Bradshaw today,

36

1

Chief of Police in

CALGARY

Camrose for 11 more.

2

FORT MACLEOD

stomach. Wilde died there in the snow, while Charcoal took the sergeant’s fresher horse and rode off. His brutal murder of Sergeant Wilde only served to strengthen the resolve of both the police and Indians alike to capture him.” [1]

Pincher Creek

Brooks

Kindersley

41

36 Medicine Hat 3 Lethbridge Taber FORT WHOOP-UP

Regina 1

Maple Creek 41

Warner WARNER

FORT WALSH

CANADA

89

“Two days (after killing Sergeant Wilde), Charcoal showed up at the home of his two brothers, Left Hand and Bear’s Back Bone. He didn’t realize that the two men had promised the police that they would help capture their renegade brother. To Charcoal’s surprise, his brothers (with their wives’ help) tied him up and turned him over to the authorities. Charcoal was hanged in the corral at Fort Macleod on March 16, 1897, with a death song on his lips.” [3] From the poem ‘Charcoal’ by A.L. Freebairn: Wild tales of whiskey trading Of fearsome Indian fight. Of men who rustled horses Across the line at night. And oftimes some old timer Would tell the tale anew. Of the time they hunted Charcoal And the men that Charcoal slew. [4] Sergeant Wilde’s service, and sacrifice, is honoured to this day on plaques erected both at Fort McLeod and on Hwy 6 south of Pincher Creek. By: Allen Gibson 1, 3 source: http://www.edmrcmpvets.ca/Wall/wilde.w.b.pdf 2,4 “60 Years in an Old Cow Town“ by A. L. Freebairn. C. 2001

11 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

U.S.A.

15 2

Havre FORT ASSINNIBOINE

FORT BENTON Great Falls


Experience Cardston, Waterton & Pincher Creek

Waterton Lakes National Park may be one of the smallest of Canada’s national mountain parks, but many consider it to be the most stunning. Here, the grasslands of the plains give way to mountain lakes and waterfalls to refresh your spirit.

ALPINE STABLES

Horses played an important role in the early development of the area. Trails were created to link the great lodges and pack trains of horses would deliver supplies and the first tourists. By exploring on horseback, you can see the park the same way.

Come celebrate the 50th anniversary of Alpine Stables and spectacular riding experiences in Waterton Lakes National Park! Alpine Stables has seen a lot of changes in the last

Horseback riding IN the park. See wildlife habitat and wildflowers galore as you meander through wooded trails of the spectacular Rocky Mountains. Our guided rides are the ultimate western adventure for the whole family. Select hourly, half-day, full day or overnight trips. Across from the golf course.

Open May through Sept, 9am - 5pm

403-859-2462 alpinestables.com

50 years, including multiple floods, changes in Waterton landmarks and growth of our family, now in the 5th generation. One of the biggest changes being the Kenow Fire of 2017 where all of Alpine Stables’ buildings were lost. Now in 2019 we will be operating out of a brand new facility! What remains is our love for Waterton and sharing the natural and cultural history with visitors from around the world. From 1969-2019, we are proud to partner with Parks Canada in showcasing this remarkable place.

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Experience Cardston, Waterton & Pincher Creek At the heart of the park, the quaint town of Waterton is located 57 km south of Pincher Creek and 55 km west of Cardston. It’s the most southerly community on The Cowboy Trail. It is a peaceful place that will remain in your heart forever. This park is a place of significance for Blackfoot people. Here, an Indigenous presence can be traced back for 10,000 years. There are signs of campsites, fire rings and bison drive lanes among the many archaeological sites. Recent fires uncovered a number of these cultural features, providing archeologists with a glipmse of how the area has been used through time.

Wildlife is so abundant here that it became the genesis of an annual fall festival. If you’ve never heard the bugling call of a bull elk or witnessed the passionate dueling of male big horn sheep during rutting season, you are missing out on two special wildlife experiences. Attend the Waterton Wildlife Weekend September 19-22, 2019. During a Taste of Waterton, May 24-June 2, local family-owned restaurants offer featured menus and “foodie” activities such as the ‘Pie Cruise’ with the Shoreline Cruise Company.

Although the fires burned a portion of the forested area, we’re witnessing a stunning ecological renewal. Flowers flourished at lower elevations last summer and 2019 will provide a unique opportunity to see a landscape adapt after a major natural event.

Many visitors use Waterton as a base while in the region. There are several authentic western adventures here such as the Great Canadian Barn Dance, the Remington Carriage Museum, the Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, Alpine Stables and the Pincher Creek Rodeo.

The native plants here are so numerous, Waterton is called the Wildflower Capital of Canada. The best time to view them is during the annual Wildflower Festival, June 13-18, 2019.

For more information pick up a copy of Experience Waterton Lakes National Park at your local visitor information center, or download it at experiencetravelguides.com/library

For more Information visit mywaterton.ca, pinchercreek.ca, and cardston.ca

Pincher Creek Pro Rodeo is slated for August 15-18, 2019. Admission is $15 for adults and only $5 for kids aged 6-14. New this year, Gringo Bulls. Hang on for a wild ride! pinchercreekprorodeo.com As a hub for tourism, Kootenai Brown Pioneer Village is home to the Visitor Information Centre, Country Store, and a Western Canadian Frontier Village with 27 heritage cabins and two museum buildings filled with intriguing artifacts. kootenaibrown.ca The Heritage Acres Museum is located 17 km north of Pincher Creek, at the east end of the Oldman River Reservoir. The museum hosts several events throughout the year such as an 1880s Tailgate Party in late June! It’s a cook-out that replicates a pioneer meal. Beef roasted over an open fire is served with traditional trimmings from the back of a chuckwagon, much as it was during a wagon-train crossing of the prairies. Cowboy coffee and country music complete the menu. Visit heritageacres.org for more information.

13 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience Chain Lakes Provincial Park Open year-round, Chain Lakes offers 122 campsites, many of which are secluded. On hot days, enjoy the beach, or many other water activities. The kids will love the playground and the seasonal on-site concession provides hot meals and specialty coffees as well as snacks. Cell service may not be available here but there is a payphone at the concession. Located at the intersection of Hwys 533 and 22, just 75 minutes north of either the Crowsnest Pass or Pincher Creek, this park makes for a great first stop from which your family can comfortably explore the southern leg of The Cowboy Trail. Day trips to nearby towns and tourist attractions include: • The Historic Bar U Ranch (27 km north) • Longview (40 km north – jerky & restaurants) • Nanton (40 km northeast – antiques & Bomber Command Museum of  Canada) • Frank Slide Interpretive Center (93 km southwest) • Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump (120 km southeast)

Nestled between Porcupine Hills and the Rocky Mountains, it provides some of the nicest views of Alberta’s rolling foothills. The lakes are stocked with rainbow trout so bring along your fly fishing gear and your licence. Native bull trout may also be found in the lakes but they are a catch-and-release species. Numerous trails connect the camping loops to the lakefront, the main day use area and the boat launches. To stretch the legs, or to let the kids blow off some steam, grab the bikes or take a stroll across the dam to the group area then follow the road back up to the park office. Bird watchers will be pleased that the lakes and geographical location make it an excellent for birding. Look for long-eared owls, loons, great blue herons and trumpeter swans. Wildlife viewing opportunities are very good here, as well. You may spot cougar, lynx, elk, moose, grey wolf, and grizzly bears. For more information phone (403) 382-4097. To reserve your campsite go to Reserve.AlbertaParks.ca.

14 | Enter Our Photo Contest


Experience Longview and the Bar U Ranch

The Bar U Ranch National Historic Site of Canada (Bar U) is located at the intersection of Hwys 22 and 540, about 100 km north of Lundbreck and 41 km southwest of High River.

your buckaroo! Enjoy an authentic ranch house meal. Open daily from May 13 - Sept. 30, 2019. 10am - 5pm.

Set in the rolling foothills, the Bar U is the only historic site to commemorate the history of ranching in Canada. Established in the 1880’s, it was one of the first large corporate ranches. Pat Burns once owned this ranch and Harry Longabaugh (better known as the Sundance Kid) worked here.

The quaint little western community of Longview is 13 km north of the Bar U. You will be pleasantly surprised by the number of restaurants here, as well as the quality of the food. The Little New York Bistro, the Longview Steak House and the historic hotel all gets rave reviews. But you’ve arrived at the mecca of cowboy snacks – the legendary Longview Jerky Shop.

Parks Canada has operated the site since 1991. Discover the life of a cowboy from the late 1800s. Ride on a wagon pulled by Percheron horses. Wander through the rustic old buildings. Try your hand at cowboy skills. Pick up quality western gifts for

Who might guess that a chewy, sometimes salty, sweet, spicy or smoky concoction could have such a huge fan following? But don’t take our word on that. Clint Eastwood special ordered jerky to the set while making his film Unforgiven, nearby.

Longview Jerky Shop WORLD FAMOUS LONGVIEW-STYLE JERKY Finely Cut Strips of Roast – Juicy and Tender Marinated in our Outstanding Secret Family Recipe Baked to Mouth Watering Perfection – Simply Irresistible We Use Only 100% Alberta Beef

You must visit Longview and experience our world famous Jerky. A true taste of Alberta!

A Royal Harvest and Heavy Horse Weekend September 14-15, 2019 Harvest - Horse powered old-time harvest Chore Horse Competition - See how

148 Morrison Road (Hwy 22 - The Cowboy Trail) Longview, Alberta

skills of days-gone-by are demonstrated by drivers from 18 to 80 years of age!

403-558-3960 longviewjerkyshop.com 15 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

Old Time Ranch Rodeo Sunday, August 18, 2019 Time honoured and traditional skills of ranching comes to the rodeo arena! Cheer on your favourite ranch as teams of working cowboys compete for prizes and bragging rights.

friendsofthebaru.ca


Experience Diamond Valley

Photo Courtesy of Travel Alberta A Family is having ice-cream at Marv’s Classic Soda Shoppe in Black Diamond.

Photo Courtesy of Travel Alberta / Colin Way Couple drinking beers on the patio at Westwood.

An important gateway to Kananaskis Country, the towns of Black Diamond and Turner Valley are located right on The Cowboy Trail and are steeped in western culture. This area is surrounded by recreational opportunities and people here are wonderful hosts to weary travellers of all ages.

At the turn of the 20th century, settlers moved here because high grade coal was discovered in the area. Even though coal is no longer mined here, “the world’s largest black diamond” is displayed on Centre Avenue. Rub it for luck. Located just 35 min southwest of Calgary, at the junction of Hwys 7 & 22, Black Diamond is just 15 min north of Longview and 5 min east of Turner Valley. The Chamber of Commerce here represents both communities, so by combining the names of the two towns, it goes by the name of Diamond Valley. That’s how we like to refer to them, because “Diamond” may refer to the many wonderful gems you’ll find here: artwork, jewellery, gifts, hand-crafted home decor, specialty clothing and a variety of great cafes & restaurants. And the pace here is much calmer than in the big city.

find your WOW factor 134 Centre Ave East, Black Diamond, Ab 403.933.5356 Open 10-5:30 daily

Unique Teak Furniture & Carvings, Exotic Stone Sculptures Bathroom Fixtures, Tables & Desks Blown Glass, Tribal Carpets

Visit us online

BlackDiamondGallery.com @blackdiamondgalleryalberta

/blackdiamondgallery

Rusty Davidson has been travelling the world for over 40 years. He and his brother started importing the indigenous art styles of the Middle East, Asia, and South America before adding Teak Root furniture, colourful kites and bright children’s clothing from Java, Bali and Indonesia. Their whole collection is displayed year-round at the Black Diamond Gallery. Time stands still at Marv’s Classic Soda Shop. It’s a 50s diner and authentic soda fountain. The ambience will stir the heart of any senior and all those who enjoy a handmade hamburger and home-cut fries. You may not find a better milkshake!

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Experience Diamond Valley Don’t be surprised if you see a dozen motorcycles parked just outside of the historic Black Diamond Hotel. The owners have just finished a soul-filling ride through the amazing landscapes in the area. Now, they’ve stopped for a pint and a hearty meal. You may notice a few changes since you were last here. The owners of The Westwood moved into the building south of the hotel. Check out their Sunday Brunch, appetizers like Halloumi, lamb burger and top it off with affogato. The bakery sold and the new owners are renovating and changing the menu. And a Tim Hortons opened on the east side of town. Karen sold the Bluerock Gallery to an employee, so we’re not seeing big changes. They specialize in high quality handmade crafts created by Alberta artists. Browse the jewellery, cards, books, and exhibits to your heart’s content. You’ll discover an eclectic mix of paintings, and works in fibre, metal, clay, glass, and wood. They have partnered with the Leighton Art Centre, Firebrand Glass Studios, Eversfield Ceramics, the Kristoferson Studio, Mady Thiel-Kopstein and Lineham House Galleries to establish The Most Beautiful Art Tour in Alberta.

Chuckwagon Cafe Here is one of those terrific hidden gems along the Cowboy Trail. Winner of “Calgary’s Best Burger” awarded by Avenue Magazine for 2 years in a row. Featured for their “Flat Iron Eggs Benedict” on the TV Show “You Gotta Eat Here” produced by the Food Network Canada.

Look for the little red barn at the 4-way stop in Turner Valley. Open at 8 AM daily. Ph: 403-933-0003

Many local events in Diamond Valley are held at Millennium Park which is located in downtown Turner Valley. Come soak up the sun. For more info visit: visitblackdiamond.ca Turner Valley is also home to several restaurants, including the Chuckwagon Cafe which has received Calgary’s Best Burger award, twice. The Chuckwagon’s Flat Iron Eggs Benedict was featured on “You Gotta Eat Here”. This cafe is a very popular spot for breakfast and lunch. American tourists love it because they’ll receive a fair exchange rate on your US dollars, too.

Events In Diamond Valley June 1 Turner Valley’s Discovery Days & Black Diamond Parade July 1 Canada Day Celebrations July 28 The Black Diamond Car Show December 7 Turner Valley Christmas Market & Light-Up Black Diamond

Photo Courtesy of Travel Alberta / Roth and Ramberg Friends looking at a map on main street in Black Diamond

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Photo Courtesy of Travel Alberta / Colin Way

Photo Courtesy of Travel Alberta / Roth and Ramberg A group of friends doing a tasting at Eau Claire Distillery

Craft Distilleries Booming in Alberta The beautiful drive. The art galleries. The Chuckwagon Cafe. Marv’s Classic Soda Shop. Indeed, there are many compelling reasons to make a road trip to the neighbouring communities of Black Diamond and Turner Valley. Connoisseurs of the booming craft spirits scene can put one more “stop” on their list: The Eau Claire Distillery. As the first craft distillery in Alberta, the Eau Claire Distillery, which is conveniently located in the heart of Turner Valley right beside the legendary Chuckwagon Cafe, has raised the bar high for this niche industry. Step into their beautifullyappointed tasting room, with its rustic, western-themed decor, and you’re immediately enveloped by a “warmth” that is unique to rural Alberta. Try their award-winning spirits and that “warmth” takes on a whole new meaning.

distillers who are tapping into the Alberta “advantage.” (Our province is home to some of the finest grains in the world!)

Burwood Distillery Located in northeast Calgary, Burwood Distillery is Calgary’s first craft distiller and a great place to start a tour. Their quaint, loft-equipped establishment also serves up delicious comfort food (this is, without a doubt, one of the most eclectic food menus in Alberta) along with their outstanding hand-crafted spirits. To go along with Chef Matthew Filson-Lau’s versatile creations (the mixed grill board with seared pork belly, lamb, and seasonal sausage is mouth-watering) are a cool collage of spirts like honey liqueur, citrus-powered gin, and charcoalfiltered vodka. Important tip: Choose a designated driver and don’t draw the short straw!

While a tour of the facility – available only on the weekends – is recommended, a visit to their tasting room to sample their products is the best course of action! Their award-winning, farm-to-glass craft spirits include the incredibly-smooth Three Point Vodka (their first product, which made its debut in June of 2014), a London-dry style Parlour Gin, and a handful of other delightful spirits including Alberta’s first Single Malt Whiskey, which is bound to get your taste buds doing backflips. (And you thought high-quality Single Malt Whiskeys were only a “Scottish” thing!)

Krang Spirits

But, while Eau Claire Distillery is a true pioneer of Alberta’s now-booming craft distillery scene, there are plenty of other craft spirts from other distillers worth travelling some distance to sip and savour. And, if you’re basing your tour from Calgary, you don’t have to go far. Here is a sampling of some new Alberta

Rig Hand Distillery

Dedicated to producing amazing, handcrafted spirits from only the finest ingredients, Krang Spirits boasts a beautiful 6,000 square-foot facility in the heart of historic downtown Cochrane, which is perfectly situated along the legendary Cowboy Trail. Krang produces numerous fruit liqueurs (their Raspberry and Sour Cherry Krangs have recently won awards) and their Nimbulus Modern Gin, with its coriander and exotic spice tones, is delicious and distinct. This distillery offers free tours and free tastings so there’s no excuse not to go!

“Alberta in a bottle” is just one of many catchy phrases that have been used to describe the potent products from this, the first craft distillery located in the Edmonton area. (located in Nisku.) Packaged in a unique triangular glass bottle that is a

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Photo Courtesy of Travel Alberta / Colin Way Couple learning the distillery process at Krang Spirits

Photo Courtesy of Bryce Meyer Photography Profile photo of David Farren from Eau Claire Distillery

replica of Leduc’s #1 drilling rig, Rig Hand makes whiskey, vodka, gin, rum, moonshine, and coffee cream liquor. Rig Hand also uses grain from a farm located just two miles down the road. Tours and tastings are offered during regular business hours and by appointment evenings and weekends.

Park Distillery Perfectly situated on Banff Avenue, they have quickly become a heavy-hitter in Alberta’s burgeoning craft distillery scene. By using pure, glacier-fed water, high-altitude grain from farms in the Alberta foothills, and hand-crafted techniques from start to finish, Park’s spirits are unlike anything else in the world. Classic Vodka, Alpine Dry Gin, and Maple Rye are a few of their delicious concoctions. But, to do this spirit “stronghold” justice, you need to gather your posse around a table, dine on their awesome around-the-campfire inspired gourmet food offerings, and, well, just soak it all in.

Wild Life Distillery and Raw Distillery Not surprisingly, given the forward-thinking nature of the fine folk from Canmore, there are now two high-quality distilleries that have recently opened their doors in this mountain town. Both Wild Life Distillery (located on the east side of town) and Raw Distillery (located in downtown Canmore and share space with BLAKE Restaurant) are exciting new “players” in the craft spirits “game.” Love a good Caesar? One made with RAW Peppercorn Gin will knock your socks off. With over 20 craft distilleries currently operating in Alberta (and many more upcoming!), the opportunity to explore and experience this growing industry is gaining plenty of traction. And, without a doubt, embarking on a tour along The Cowboy Trail makes for an exceptional – and “spirit-filled” - getaway! By: Andrew Penner

Try Some Authentic Craft German Beer While in Turner Valley In 2008, Jochen Fahr arrived from Germany as a university student and carried a passion for exceptional beers, which led him, in 2015, to start to establish the Brauerei Fahr craft brewery in Turner Valley. This brewery follows the German Beef Purity Law of 1516, which means, in part, they adhere to strict rules and make their beers with the finest grains, hops, water and yeast – no other ingredients.

Their ‘Fahr Away’ Hefeweizen is a refreshing, light, and well-balanced beer perfectly suited for summer patio time. The ‘Fahr North’ Dunkelweizen is similarly delightful for year-round enjoyment with hints of banana and clove thanks to special yeast. Rounding out the selection is the classic ‘Fahr Out’ Pilsner beer, a common yet delicious German beer.

To learn more about Fahr and where to purchase these fine German beers visit fahr.ca 19 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience Alberta Open Farm Days Ten minutes into our memorable journey, with the clicketyclack of the train on the track providing a comfortable rhythm, we trundled to the open-air car near the back of the train and took in the endless prairie views. Golden wheat fields, that were rolling like a shimmering sea in the hot prairie sun, were only interrupted by tidy farms, gravel roads, and wooden grain elevators. And the infinite sky, a blue-white canvas smeared with wispy clouds, covered everything. For nearly an hour we stood there, mesmerized, and soaked it all in. Unquestionably, the Aspen Crossing train ride – one of only a few places in Canada where you can experience an authentic journey on the rails – was the highlight of our Alberta Open Farm Days experience. However, visiting an organic carrot farm (the largest in Alberta), a vegetable greenhouse, a giant strawberry patch, and a meadery were also interesting and eye-opening experiences. Alberta Open Farm Days is an annual two-day event in late summer, celebrating agriculture. It provides Albertans with a backstage pass to many of the farms and ranches throughout

the province. It gives city-slickers an opportunity to meet the farmers and witness firsthand the behind-the-scenes workings of an industry we are all connected to. For many people, a visit to a working farm is something they would rarely consider or seldom have the opportunity to do. The closest thing to “connecting” with the food they eat takes place in the aisles of the supermarket; an experience that doesn’t provide an adequate understanding or appreciation for how the agricultural world really works. And, as we may or may not realize, the agricultural world is really our life-line! Of course this province wide collaboration includes over 100 participating farms, ranches, and ag-tourism operators, also includes unique culinary events, markets, music, tours and tastings from just about every food and beverage genre you could think of. And in the off chance that you need to be reminded of just how important – and beautiful! – the Alberta countryside really is, well, you can also just hop on the train at Aspen Crossing and experience it! By: Andrew Penner

For more information visit albertafarmdays.ca

Photos Courtesy Alberta Open Farm Days

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Experience Our Meaderies “Mead of Poetry” is a Norse legend illustrating the reverence people had for this drink. Long ago, a war between gods ended when both enemies sealed a pact by spitting in a vat. The disgusting spit concoction created Kvasir, the wisest, most learned and artistic human to ever live. Unfortunately for him, he soon fell victim of two cunning dwarves who killed him. The dwarves poured his blood into a vat of honey creating a mead giving Kvasir’s wisdom and knowledge to anyone drinking it. The tasty elixir became known as the “Mead of Poetry.” Eventually, the dwarves surrendered their mead to the son of a giant they had previously slain. Next, Odin, a Norse god, stole the Mead for his own use. If Odin were amongst us today, he certainly would be impressed by Alberta’s wonderful mead offerings. The advent of science coupled with our producers’ talents and artistry certainly qualify Alberta’s meads as “Meads of Poetry.” There are five meaderies along the Cowboy Trail producing outstanding honey wines. As well as tastings, some offer fun experiences like Chinook Arch Meadery’s ‘Horde at the Hive’ to be held June 1-2, 2019 where visitors can experience the culture of a Viking Village complete with performers. These meaderies rival each other in originality and quality in their mead products, using local fruits and other ingredients to create uniquely Albertan wines. Visit their tasting rooms to discover their products. To help you with mead terminology we list below some of the mead styles on offer. Taste, ask questions and learn. Our mead producers will love you for it. “Skol!” By: Renée Delorme

Meads

Try

Hydromel: Basic light mead

Tamarack Jack’s “Buzz Saw”

Sack mead: Sweet/ dessert style mead

Grey Owl’s “Cranberry”

Rhodomel: Honey infused with rose petals

Spirit Hills’ “Wild Rosy”

Melomel: Honey fermented with fruits

Spirit Hills’ “Saskwatch” or T amarack Jack’s “Tillicum”

Cyser: Honey fermented with apple or apple juice

Grey Owl Meadery’s “Apple”

Metheglin: Honey infused with spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves

Chinook Arch’s “Fire ‘n’ Spice Mead’

Bochet: Mead made with caramelized honey

Chinook Arch’s “Vanilla Bochet Mead”

Session: a low alcohol, carbonated mead

Fallentimber’s “Hopped Mead”

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Chinook Arch Meadery

Spirit Hills Winery


Experience Road Cycling

Photo Courtesy of Banff & Lake Louise Tourism

Photo Courtesy of Travel Alberta

Heading west into the warm Chinook wind, my ride to Bragg Creek – along super-scenic Hwys 22x and 22 – took longer than expected. Due to the strong headwind, a little more sweat equity was required. It proved a blessing in disguise, actually. The slightly slower pace gave me time to enjoy the stunning prairie-and-mountain vistas. And the extra calorie burn meant a bigger piece of pie could be enjoyed when I finally made it to the Cinnamon Spoon coffee shop!

Photo Courtesy of Travel Alberta / Mike Seehagel

Photo Courtesy of Quin Schrock @everchanginghorizon

In Cochrane, for example, the Grand Valley Road is a revered ride incorporating idyllic Alberta scenery and a wonderful highway twisting and turning through the foothills. For me, a newbie road cyclist based in Calgary, two of my favourites are definitely Bragg Creek and Cochrane.

Unquestionably, the 50 km ride from Calgary to Bragg Creek is a classic. It features pretty pastoral countryside, awesome mountain views, gentle grades, a four-lane highway (not the entire distance) with wide shoulders, and a big pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. With great coffee and baked goods, the Cinnamon Spoon is a payoff that always hits the spot!

An avid cyclist and the Sales Director at Bow Cycle in northwest Calgary, Kurt Christensen says, “Alberta is so awesome for road cycling. We have some of the most picturesque riding in the world. The mountains are a stunning background on so many rides. And the variety is off the charts. You can ride in the mountains, the foothills, urban pathways, badlands, boreal forests, gorgeous valleys, wind-swept plains, it’s all there. If you want to go on a scenic road ride in Alberta, your options are basically limitless.”

Rural Alberta is full of tranquil highways that dip and dive through wide-open spaces, quaint townsites, beautiful badlands, and aspen-lined valleys. Other towns (or cities) such as Cochrane, Devon, Medicine Hat, Beaumont, and Okotoks offer exceptional road rides just beyond their limits.

While the cycling in and around Calgary is definitely worth noting, getting further into the rural areas can be the crème de la crème. For example, charting a course through the badlands and the Red Deer River Valley near Drumheller can be about as rewarding as it gets. And cruising through the Highwood

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Experience Road Cycling area or Crowsnest Pass, the David Thompson Highway near Nordegg, and the beautiful prairie loop rides near Beaumont are a few other world-class options. Interestingly, a city of 18,000 people, Beaumont is located just south of Edmonton, and home to Le Tour De L’Alberta, the province’s biggest, one-day celebration of cycling, community, and culture. Without a doubt, the thousands of kilometers of well-kept roads and highways in the province are another major reason why Alberta is one of the top road cycling regions in North America. “People take our roads for granted,” says Christensen, who is also an owner at Bow Cycle, one of the largest bicycle shops in North America. “We are fortunate to have fantastic roads and maintenance standards, especially in the parks, which are very high when compared to many other parts of the world. Motorists here in Alberta are typically very courteous when they see cyclists on the road.” If you are new to road cycling, finding the right route, the right partners, and the right bike should all be top priorities. “Try and ride in a group,” says Christensen. “It’s definitely safer and

there is strength in larger numbers. A bigger group is way more visible than a solo rider. Many of the top cycling communities in the province have groups you can readily join. Many of them do a ride every day.” As far as a bike goes, renting could be an excellent option for you, especially if you are visiting the province and don’t want the hassle of transporting your wheels. (A wide assortment of quality road bikes is available at Bow Cycle.) “Regardless if you’re buying or renting, you want to get sized for a bike from a reputable, fit-certified bike person,” says Christensen. “Proper seat height and bike fit is key for efficiency and to avoid injury. Proper air pressure in your tires is also one of my biggest pet peeves! You will avoid pinch flats if they are property inflated and you will be way more efficient on the road. A properly fitted saddle can also make or break your ride.” And, from my own personal experience, the correct size of your slice of pie at the post-ride celebration is also very, very important. Enjoy your ride and pie. By: Andrew Penner

Millarville and Priddis With vendors representing “growers, farmers, makers, bakers, and artists” the Millarville Farmers’ Market is located along Hwy 549, just east of Hwy 22, about 45 min southwest of Calgary. It’s a popular spot for those looking to escape the city and spend a day in the picturesque foothills. Open 9am - 2pm on Sat, from mid-June to early Oct. Admission is $3. Other attractions include the Millarville Heritage Rodeo, July 19-21 and the 112th annual Priddis & Millarville Country Fair (PMCF), August 17 & 18. The PMCF is one of Alberta’s oldest and largest country fairs. Support local farmers and crafters while learning about our rich agricultural history. Touch the animals and the creations of local artisans. Make & Take activities include cookie decorating, rock painting, sheave tying, knitting, crocheting and more. Ready to be entertained?  On stage this year the band ‘Taken By Sanity’, Malcolm the Magician, the Priddis Volunteer Fire Brigade, and the Birds of Prey. And be sure to check out the contests, such as pie eating, rooster crowing, and watermelon eating. And remember to cheer on your favourite! 23 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

The Priddis-Millarville Resident’s Association reminds cyclists on rural roads to ride safely and in single file.

Priddis-Millarville.ca


Experience Our Farmers’ Markets

Calgary has a new farmers’ market (with a difference) and some upstart markets are expected to be opening in the city over the next year — all part of a community of about 200 farmers’ seasonal and year round markets across the province, including many along and near the historic Cowboy Trail. The Avenida Food Hall & Fresh Market opened in late 2018 located at the Avenida Place Shopping Centre off Macleod Trail in southeast Calgary. While it has many of the traditional farmers’ market components — local and regional vendors of fresh vegetables, fruits, meats and other farm products, the venture also borrows some international features by offering a unique dining experience as well. “It is not your average market,” says Ken Aylesworth, general manager. “We provide an experience that builds on culture and community. The food hall concept has been a staple in both historical European cities such as London, Lisbon, and Paris and in vibrant North American centres such as New York, Boston, and Montreal.

The Avenida Food Hall & Fresh Market is open Thursday through Sunday from 11am to 8pm The long-standing Calgary Farmers’ Market, has operated in recent years on 77th Avenue (generally west of Deerfoot Trail, near the corner of Heritage Drive and Blackfoot Trail) plans to open it’s second location on the west side of the city (Hwy 1 near Canada Olympic Park) in the community of Greenwich, which is currently under construction. The new 50,000 sq. ft. market is being designed specifically to accommodate a market, says Rod Blackshaw, president of the Calgary Farmers’ Market board. Along with the existing location, the new Calgary West market will be home to 75 vendors and feature “al-fresco style” dining and shopping. “With more than a million visitors a year through our existing facility, there was a need for a second market to meet demand,” says Bradshaw. The existing location is open year round, Thursday through Sunday from 9am to 5pm By: Lee Hart

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Experience Our Farmers’ Markets Pincher Creek - Memorial Arena Fridays; June to October

Banff - Bear Street Wednesdays; June to October

Rimbey - Pask-a-Poo Park Saturdays; May to October

Fort Macleod - Curling Rink Wednesdays; July to August

Canmore - Civic Centre Thursdays; May to October

Rocky Mountain House - Museum Saturdays; Year Round

Claresholm - Claresholm Arena Wednesdays; July to September

Crossfield - Community Hall Thursdays; June to September

Clearwater Market - Brick Parking Lot Thursdays; May to September

Nanton - United Church Saturdays; June to September

Carstairs - Half Century Centre Saturdays; May to August

Caroline - Caroline Museum Fridays; May to September

Millarville - Millarville Fair Grounds Saturdays; June to October

Didsbury - Memorial Complex Wednesdays; July to September

Spruce View - Spruce View Hall Mondays; May to September

Okotoks - two kilometers north Fridays; June to September

Olds - Cow Palace Thurdays; May to September

Drayton Valley - Mackenzie Centre Wednesdays; Year Round

Granary Road - NE Black Diamond Thursday - Sunday; Year Round

Bergen - Bergen Hall Saturdays; June to September

Edson - Friendship Centre Fridays; April to December

Calgary - Blackfoot near Heritage Thursday - Sunday; Year Round

Bentley - Curling Rink Saturdays; June to September

Evansburg - Tipple Park Museum Saturdays; May to September

Cochrane Ranche Historic Site Saturdays; June to September

Sundre - Curling Rink Fridays; May to September

Hinton - Switzer Drive Thursdays; March to December

For further information on these and other markets visit albertamarkets.com By: Christine van Hal

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Experience the Scenic Route This means different things to different folks. For some, it’s a way to drink in the culture and enjoy the stunning landscapes. Others simply want to avoid the heavy traffic and tourist jams. More popular scenic routes, such as the Official Cowboy Trail, are usually well-suited for RVs or pulling a trailer. No matter why you choose to take a scenic route, there are several things you need to consider before you go:

Cell Phone and GPS Reception: Many scenic routes take you into areas where connections for your phone and GPS are iffy or non-existent. If you rely on your GPS for directions, make sure you download your information so it’s available off-line and carry a hard copy of a good travel guide, as well. There are few things worse than getting lost on a narrow, winding road or in an area with no camping options or parking facilities.

Navigability: Depending on the size and type of your rig, a scenic route can present challenges. Some roads can be too narrow for towing long trailers or Class A motorhomes. Cornering, backing and

even pullouts for repairs can make a simple detour an all-day affair, if something goes wrong. Roads in Canada vary from well-maintained super highways to gravel back roads. They may have smooth surfaces or be a nightmare of potholes and narrow winding twists. By asking a local, checking with different RV forums, or even searching online for tips and feedback about a certain area, it is often possible to discover the pros and cons of the roads on your route before you get in your RV and head out.

Weather and Time of the Year: Check the weather before you get off the main highway. Smaller roads can flood or wash out, leaving you stranded. What is an easy drive on dry pavement can be frightening on wet pavement with heavy winds, something not uncommon in southwest Alberta. If the forecast is for strong winds and you have a high-profile vehicle, make sure the area has a pullout where you can park until the storm subsides. Winter can set in quickly and icy roads are more likely to be a problem on scenic routes that aren’t heavily travelled.

Availability of Resources: While travelling a short section might take only a few hours, it could take several days to explore the entire length of the Cowboy Trail. So, it’s smart to make sure that your supplies of food, fuel and propane don’t get low. Bad weather, a flat tire, or other repairs can make you grateful for a well-stocked RV. Depending on whether or not you intend to boon dock as well, make sure your batteries are charged, your water tanks are full, and your black and grey tanks are empty. Smaller campgrounds may prefer cash, so stop at an ATM, too.

Safety and Security: One of the best things about scenic routes is that they tend to have fewer people and more wildlife. Check with the local RCMP to see if there are any bear alerts, campfire bans and other conditions that you need to be aware of. Remember to ask about road repairs and construction, to avoid delays. Make sure you have a good first aid kit and know how to use it. If you’re going to take the scenic route, prepare to have an experience that you’ll remember fondly, not one that will keep you awake at night. 26 | Enter Our Photo Contest


2

18 Marv’s Classic Soda Shop and Diner

the e c n e i r e exp ies k c o r a t alber

• Classic 50s style Burgers & Fries • Authentic Soda Fountain, Shakes & Malts • 1957 Seeburg Jukebox • 150 varieties of Vintage Glass Bottled Soda Pop • NOW LICENSED

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- 4 - 7 day wilderness trips - Weekender Packages - Great Divide Ride - 2 and 3 hour rides 15 km West of Turner Valley, 45 minutes SW of Calgary

FIND US ON

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8

PUSH THE BOUNDARIES OF YOUR SENSES

Picture this – a hamlet filled with personality, a vintage backcountry feel and small town charm. With a wide variety of friendly shops, world class dining, and artists working around every corner, Bragg Creek is a beloved Alberta treasure. There is something for everyone and for every one of your senses.

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WEM TO YOUR

SENSES HERE ARE SOME SUGGESTIONS: Bragg Creek Days July 20, 2019

Tsuut’ina Rodeo

July 27 & July 28, 2019

Busk ‘n Bragg

August 31, 2019

Bragg Creek Arts / Plein Air Festival September 21 to September 30, 2019

Scarecrow Festival

October 5 to November 3, 2019

Scarecrow Scurry, 1k & 5k Fun Run October 14, 2019

Bragg Creek Artisans Christmas Sale

November 16 & November 17, 2019

Kananaskis Christmas Market

November 16 & November 17, 2019

Spirit of Christmas

December 7 & December 8, 2019

Taste of Bragg Creek April 3, 2020

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The Cowboy Trail Alberta, Canada

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Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association Anchor D Ranch Banff Trail Riders Balzac Business Community Association Bluerock Gallery Boundary Ranch Bow Rivers Edge Campground Bragg Creek Chamber of Commerce Bragg Creek Trading Post Brewster Adventures Calgary Hotels & Motels Creative Western Adventures David Thompson Country Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump Home on The Range Adventure Tours Kokopelli County Cabins Kramer Pond Lodge Marv’s Classic Soda Shop McKenzie’s Trails West Moose Mountain Horseback Adventures Oldman River Brewing Ltd Outpost at Warden’s Rock Ram River Tours & South Ram Outfitters Red Lodge Guest Ranch Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site Studio West Sundance Lodges Sundre Pioneer Museum Sunset Guiding & Outfitting Timberline Tours Town of Mayerthorpe Town of Pincher Creek Town of Sundre The Trail Riders of the Canadian Rockies Village of Cremona

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505 Hillspring

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Header 3

1 Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association NEW DATES! NEW LOCATION! Music and stories of the West. Sept 20 -22, 2019 at the WILD WILD WEST EVENT CENTRE, 67 Commercial Crt, Calgary (by Calaway Park on #Hwy 1). TICKETS will be available online at EVENTBRITE and at the DOOR. Meals and Refreshments available for purchase. The Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association was established in 1987 to promote and preserve our rich western heritage through cowboy poetry, western music, and story telling.

Banff Trail Riders

Departing right from the town of Banff, we have rides suitable for all ages and abilities from 1 hour to 6 days. Our Cowboy Cookouts can be enjoyed by horseback or covered wagon. Perfect for families with young children & seniors. Our Pack Trips take guests deep into the backcountry of Banff National Park for an experience like no other. Trips are available from 2-6 days with stays in cozy Backcountry Lodges or rustic Wilderness Tent Camps.

5 Bluerock Gallery

9

Collaborating together to Create Community – Through Art! Our vision is to gather together and represent a full range of high quality fine art and fine craft, in all sizes and prices. A beloved destination for one-of-a-kind fine art and fine craft, we currently represent almost 200 regional fine artists and fine craftspeople. Their awesome talent and the art in our gallery make us proud every day – we have some fabulous artists living in the area!

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Bragg Creek Trading Post

For authentic native crafts visit the historic Trading Post and experience the ambiance of its 90 plus years here. Where else can you try on genuine moccasins, mukluks or mitts or a native knit Cowichan sweater around the warmth of a trusty wood stove amidst the aroma of freshly tanned hides. Or have the chance experience of meeting the native artists who bring their crafts in to trade or sell as you peruse all the other unusual and beautiful offerings?

Boundary Ranch

Adventures abound at Boundary Ranch! Enjoy all the Ranch has to offer from Scenic Trail Rides and Packages from one hour to six days or relax on the patio of the Caribou Café and Lounge. For group entertainment; a private Rodeo, a down n’ dirty Gunfight, western-themed corporate team building, Cowboy meals and much more! A Guinn Family Tradition, with over 85 years guiding in the Rocky Mountains! Boundary Ranch is located one hour from Calgary or Banff.

20 Moose Mountain Horseback Adventures Providing horse enthusiasts with the opportunity to enjoy some of the best riding in Western Canada since 1991. With well-conditioned and responsive horses, our team of knowledgeable guides seeks to ensure every rider experiences the best of Alberta’s unspoiled beauty. Join us for a few hours or a few weeks. Day rides are offered from our base at the M&M ranch, less than an hour from Calgary and only minutes from Bragg Creek. Reservations Required.

27 Sundance Lodges Come stay with us at Sundance Lodges - a family campground located in the spectacular Rocky Mountains of Kananaskis Country. For over 25 years, we’ve been offering adventure accommodation in beautiful Sioux tipis and comfortable trapper’s tents nestled in the forest bordering the pristine Kananaskis River. If you have a spirit of adventure and want something out of the ordinary, give us a call. Reservations Recommended.

Saddle Up & Drive Alberta’s Cowboy Trail! Horseback Trail Rides

Accommodations

Farm and Ranch Vacations

Adventures

Guest Ranches

Historic Sites

Attractions

Shopping

For updates on what is happening on the cowboy trail, check out our website at or visit our facebook page which has updates from operators, images, videos and events along the trail.

31 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


25

E M O H . . . N I A T ROCKY MOUN

Immerse yourself in stories of plains bison, legendary explorers and the fur trade. Stay awhile. Camp in a tipi, trapper tent, trapline cabin, RV or tent. Just off the Cowboy Trail and David Thompson Highway on Hwy 11A.

In proud collaboration with MĂŠtis Local 845 and the Confluence Heritage Society.

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33

LIVE LIKE IT’S YESTERDAY TODAY

Sundre offers visitors a wealth of history and knowledge. Walk the grounds of the Pioneer Village Museum or check out the World of Wildlife where nature literally stands still. Step into Sundre’s exciting past and experience the way we were.

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alberta canada For details visit thecowboytrail.com


Experience a Country Vacation You can find it all, from the prairies to the Rocky Mountain foothills Imagine yourself taking the best vacation of your life

or freeway within sight or earshot. Others are

at a ranch, in the backcountry or a country vacation

amazed at the peaceful silence.

venue. The cool, fresh mountain air, the open spaces, the feel of a steady horse beneath you as you top the

Let’s not forget the possibility to master the “art

next rise…relaxing in the warmth of the setting sun

of relaxation”. When you find yourself surrounded

as you wait for the dinner bell call…shared time with

by natural beauty, slow down, breathe deeply and

family and friends.

appreciate it. Watch a sunset, wait for the cattle to come to water, go bird watching, take a walk through

Some guests say it’s an awesome experience to be

wildflowers, nap in a hammock, listen to livestock,

surrounded only by wilderness without a street light

or just sit quietly and let your mind wander.

The meals are scrumptious and the accommodations range from rustic cabins and cozy teepees to pampered retreats 19th Annual

Close your eyes and think of the Canadian West Rocky Mountains horseback pack trips working guest ranches cattle drives clean clear, wide open spaces

Contact us today to plan your dream holiday.

June 14, 15 & 16, 2019

403-731-7921

Live Western Music & Poetry

Stavely, Alberta, in the arena

FRIDAY & SATURDAY 10 AM TO 9 PM Followed by Campfire Jam Sessions

homeontherange.ca

SUNDAY 8 - 10 AM

8 am Breakfast $8/person 10 am Cowboy Church - No Charge

Submit your authentic western experience to ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Contests

TICKETS AVAILABLE AT THE DOOR

• Weekend Pass $60 • 1 Full Day $35 • 1 Evening $25

Info: Audrey 403-549-2453 or Charlie 403-625-2157 wccowboygathering.com Funded in part by

34 | Enter Our Photo Contest


WIN: A Gift Certificate for a NEW Pair of Cowboy Boots courtesy of Alberta Boots, Calgary ($300) www.albertaboot.com You are reading the seventh edition of Experience The Cowboy Trails. We’d like to know how we did and learn how we can better serve your needs. Please complete and return the following short questionnaire for a chance to Win Where did you pick up this travel guide?

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All of our travel guides & maps can be found in our Mobile Library at ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Library Thank you for participating in this survey. In appreciation for completing and submitting this survey, you will be entered into the prize draw described above. The winner will be randomly selected by CMI Publishing on November 30, 2019. 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, fill out our online survey at ExperienceTravelGuides.com/CowboySurvey

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“Soapy” Smith: One of Alberta’s Colourful Cowboys

Soapy Smith leading pack train towards Jonas Pass Courtesy of the Whyte Museum (V263 / NA-2259)

Intending to carve out a new life and make their fortune in the wild frontier of Alberta, Soapy Smith and his brother Fred arrived in Calgary in 1903. Born ‘Herbert Alonzo Scott’, he had just finished serving in the Spanish American war and came to homestead land along the newly finished Trans-Canada rail line in Alberta. Herbert bore a striking resemblance to a notorious con artist who was called Soapy Smith and was operating in the region. As a consequence, Herbert was thrown in a jail in Calgary. Having enjoyed the brief fame, upon being released, he kept the name ‘Soapy Smith’ for himself. The Smith brothers (now Soapy & Fred) homesteaded 30 miles west of Calgary in a valley near a small lake on the last ridge before the Stoney Indian Reservation. Today, the ridge bares their name, and the Trans-Canada Highway crosses over “Scott Lake Hill” so thousands of travellers see the name every year.

There is no record of how long the brothers stayed on the Scott Lake Hill homestead, but Soapy went to work for the Brewster family as a cook, guide and general ranch hand to make extra money. He also packed for the Trail Riders of the Canadian Rockies (TRCR). “Soapy stories” about his misadventures and his character have been told for years around campfires. Here are some of our favourites: It became a tradition with the TRCR to have music around the campfire. Over the years transporting instruments became a nightmare for the packers, and one particular portable organ would not stay quiet. It kept wheezing and moaning on the back of the packhorses. In frustration, Soapy hurled it over a cliff. However, John Murray Gibbon, the TRCR’s founder, retrieved the luckless instrument and got it working again. Not to be thwarted, Soapy found another opportunity to rid himself

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of the problem. This time he hurled it into Og Lake north of Mount Assiniboine, where it met its final watery demise. Sometime around 1930, Soapy guided George Eastman, the founder of Eastman Kodak, on a photography trip from Lake Louise to Bow Lake. Eastman wrote a book about the trip and took a multitude of pictures, many of which have become quite famous. He described Soapy as a man who couldn’t utter a sentence without swearing, but who really knew his horses. It wasn’t until Soapy was in his sixties that matrimonial bliss found the old cowboy. Eva Coates began working as a cook for the Brewsters, and it wasn’t long before Eva and Soapy fell in love and were married at the McDougall Church at Morley. Together, Soapy and Eva built a cabin along the Kananaskis River, but the first spring a flood washed it away. Undaunted, they built a new home up on the flat lands, which became known as the Rafter Six Guest Ranch. Soapy built a big outhouse, with three holes: a big one for Soapy, a medium sized one for Eva, and a small one for their young son Mike. Eva complained because the outhouse was about 100 yards from their home – much too far to go on a cold winter night. Soapy was a fine marksman with a pistol and bragged that he never missed. Bill McCallum, of the RCMP was visiting Soapy and over a bottle of whiskey, the discussion turned to who was the better shot. Soapy went out to the back porch and shot all of the clothespins off of the line, where Eva had just hung up the washing to dry. She was not amused.

Columbia Icefield trip, Bow Lake Lewis Freeman and Soapy Smith. Courtesy of the Whyte Museum (V263 / NA-2277)

Eva, Mike and Soapy continued to operate Rafter Six Ranch until the spring of 1948, when in April, Soapy died of TB and hepatitis. Soapy was buried in the old Banff Cemetery, beside many other old-time cowboys and mountain men, including the TRCR founder, John Murray Gibbon. Eva remarried. She and her second husband, Alvin Guinn, had three children: Rick, Colleen, and Shannon. Rick went on to become an outfitter. Eva and Alvin continued to operate the ranch until Stan Cowley bought it in 1976. Soapy Smith is just one of the many “colourful characters” that rode with the TRCR. - Originally written by Dennis Orr and Stuart Watkins Publisher’s Note: Originally published in the TRCR newsletter. Excerpts reprinted with permission from Stuart Watkins. For more info, trailridevacations.com

Soapy Smith, George Harrison, and Bill Potts posing for a studio portrait. Courtesy of the Whyte Museum (v237 / 85 / na66 – 1875)

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Experience Bragg Creek Bragg Creek is a quintessential hamlet tucked in the forest on the edge of towering mountains west of Calgary along the Cowboy Trail. The meandering Elbow River, a stream with inviting rocky shores, and plenty of deer give the hamlet that rustic woodsy feel. The local community is proud of what it offers - peaceful living away from the hustle and bustle of city life. Despite temptations for commercial exploitation, the people of Bragg Creek have maintained the celebration of country living, communion with nature and an offering of quality arts, crafts, and food artisans. Stroll down Bragg Creek streets and take your time. It is yours to discover.

associated Yoga Studio’s misstion, is to be a place for respite and connection, away from a busy life. Take time to sip a cup, browse their offerings of craft, or take in the sun on their patio.

The Heart Cafe is nestled amongst the evergreens across

Korner Kitchen is one of the newer family restaurants in

the street from the hamlet’s commercial core. It offers top quality coffee and tea, and fresh baking created on location with healthy ingredients. In 1965, this cabin was the home of the Merryfield family. Today, the family-run cafe and the

town. Unassuming yet well-rooted in the community, the ‘Kitchen’s’ owner Sean Birgit offers delicious pizzas as well as hearty German and English inspired cuisine. The restaurant is located on the “sunny side” of the mall. That is where you

The artist-owned and operated, Studio and Gallery is the latest art venture showcasing local talents. Part art gallery, part studio, 10 artists will tantalize you with beautiful creations. The studio also offers group classes or private lessons, freeing the artist within you. Come try your hand at pottery, jewellery making, textile art and painting. The gallery is located right next to the Heart Cafe.

The River Dragon Fly, Photo Courtesy of Elizabeth Hertz

The Heart Cafe, Photo Courtesy of David Copithorne Photography

Scoops and Snacks, Photo Courtesy of Renee Delorme

Studio and Gallery, Photo Courtesy of Renee Delorme

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Experience Bragg Creek Events In Bragg Creek

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Gooseberry Campground

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The Highlands

October 4 - November 3 Scarecrow Festival

December 7, 8 Spirit of Christmas

River

Bragg Creek Provincial Park

September 21 & 22 Heritage Festival

November 16 & 17 Artisans Christmas Sale

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August 24 Moose Mountain Trail Races

Redwood Meadows Golf Club

Pine Ave. Spruce Av e.

Centre Ave.

Elk Valley Dr.

July 26 - 28 Tsuu T’ina Pow Wow and Rodeo

West Bragg Creek

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Town Site of Redwood Meadows

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July 20 & 21 Bragg Creek Days & Ride for Sight

Yoho

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Allen Bill Pond

Bar Kay Cee

McLean Creek Recreation Area

To Hwy 2 South Calgary Priddis

762

River Cove Campground Rusticana

Paddy’s Flats Aspen Creek

Allridge

must stop for a solid meal and pint of craft beer after a day playing in Kananaskis country.

SunCatchers Design Studio and River Dragonfly is hidden off White Avenue, also known as “Heritage Mile”, on Burntall Street. There, amongst the spruce trees, the glass studio has operated for 38 years and the shop for 23 years. This inviting cluster of buildings has created a sanctuary for arts and crafts. At its heart is Elizabeth Hertz, a well-known stained glass artist. Her partner Rod, oversees the boutique filled with a treasure trove of antiques, jewellry, stained glass and clothing. Be sure to check them out.

Scoops and Snacks is the towns “cherry on the sundae.” A refreshing summer treat located in a small, somewhat tired yet charming old, log cabin half way down White Avenue. This treat shack boasts as many as 50 flavours of ice cream, yogurt or sherbet and, on those warm and beautiful days, you can expect a bit of a line up. Check them out on Facebook for more information. By: Renée Delorme

The 45th annual Tsuu T’ina Pow Wow and Rodeo will be held from July 26-28, 2019. As one of the largest First Nations rodeos in Canada, you can witness all of the classic events including steer wrestling, and bull riding. In addition, come experience a traditional pow wow as dancers and drummers compete. Held at the Redwood Meadows rodeo grounds, just minutes northeast of Bragg Creek. tsuutina.ca.

39 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience Cochrane

Photos Courtesy of Town of Cochrane and Jo-Anne Oucharek

Ask any true Albertan, our “western” ways are a major part of our collective DNA. From rodeos and Rockies to horses and cattle-peppered hills, “the west” is who, and what, we are. The town of Cochrane, perhaps better than any other community in Alberta, represents our western ways and heritage. Located just half an hour northwest of Calgary on the Cowboy Trail, Cochrane (pop. 25,853) is a charming community with plenty of appeal: rodeos, festivals, street markets, beautiful parks, riverside paths, and a historic downtown core teeming with eclectic shops and art galleries celebrating “the west”. Cochrane has something for everyone.

Not surprisingly, Cochrane has a rich ranching history. The Historic Cochrane Ranche Site, located near the intersection of Hwy 22 and Hwy 1A, was the site of Alberta’s first large scale livestock operation. Founded in 1881, the idyllic setting of this ranch is still enjoyed by thousands each year. The ranch is a 55-hectare (136-acre) public park with picnic tables, fire pits, walking trails, and an outdoor stage that has been the site of numerous events. While the pristine natural setting of the ranch is obviously one of its main draws, it’s also home to historic buildings, a museum with numerous displays and artifacts, an indoor theatre, corporate meeting space, as well as the town’s administrative offices.

FEEL THE CHARACTER Set less than an hour from the majestic Rocky Mountains, Kananaskis Provincial and Banff National Parks, Cochrane is the perfect place to explore and rest your head away from the crowds. Easily accessible via the 1A Highway and Highway 22 (The Cowboy Trail), take a detour and experience the character of Cochrane.

cochrane-tourism.ca

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Experience Cochrane Nearby Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park should also be on your radar if Alberta’s colourful ranching history is something that interests you. The park, which was officially opened in 2011, is home to jaw-dropping mountain vistas, an extensive trail network, old ranch buildings and ruins, and much more. If you’re looking for that idyllic western scene of rolling foothills and meandering rivers framed by the “blue Canadian Rockies,” this is your spot! While there are great photo opportunities at nearly every turn, a couple of standout spots for shutterbugs are the views from the Park Center and the Yodel Loop. For people looking to wheel through the classic “western” scenes, a rewarding way to enjoy the incredible countryside is a biking tour on the many secondary roads that meander in the Cochrane area. This region is renowned for its rolling road biking routes that capture the essence of what wild west landscapes are all about. Located just west of town, the loop that follows Horse Creek Road to Grand Valley Road is always a popular choice. This gorgeous 50 km trip will take cyclists through pastoral ranch land dotted with farms and acreages on winding roads with gentle grades. For more information on biking in the area, visit the Bike Bros bike shop in Cochrane. Spring Hill RV Park

Cremona

RanchHouse Road RanchHouse Town Office

Stockmen’s Foundation and Archives

Historic Cochrane Ranch

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Experience Cochrane

Tim Hall/ Cochrane Tourism Association

Cochrane Tourism Association

The friendly staff there will tell you everything you need to know about this cycling hot spot. Sticking to the “wheel” theme, the Cochrane Youth Park features one of the best skate parks in Western Canada. The 1,300 square metre concrete park, beautifully positioned on a hillside overlooking the valley, was professionally designed with plenty of awesome features such as bowls, pools, ramps, walls, rails, and informal seating areas. If skating isn’t your thing, just watching the action is a sport unto itself! No matter if you are hiking, biking, skating, golfing (The Links of Gleneagles is laced with postcard-pretty holes!), or just passing through, a saunter along the streets within the historic downtown should be part of your plan. The westernthemed core is filled with interesting shops, galleries, cafes, saloons, and restaurants. MacKay’s Ice Cream is unquestionably the most popular place to meet downtown. Indeed, after any activity, there is nothing like a delicious ice cream cone at this legendary “cool down” spot. A Cochrane institution since 1948, MacKay’s handmade

ice cream, made with high-quality butterfat cream, is dense and delicious. Although their maple walnut is a real classic, you must try their chocolate, bubble-gum, vanilla, chocolate fudge chunk, strawberry...you get the idea, the choices abound. What’s your favourite? While shopping at the many eclectic downtown shops – such as The Heavenly Outhouse (home decor), Poor David’s (cards and unique gifts), and Vintage Verandah (rustic farmhouse furniture and unique re-purposed items) – is reason enough to visit Cochrane, there are certainly many others! For example, the historic Rockyview Hotel is an ancient wild west enclave, that’s actually the third oldest hotel in Alberta. It tells the story of how Calgarians used to jump on their horse and come to the hotel for a drink. In fact, it was one of the few places where it was actually legal for men and women to sit together in the same room and enjoy an alcoholic beverage. Not surprisingly, the “sinful” activity would lead to singing, dancing, and, well, who knows what else. The wild west had to be populated somehow, I guess. By Andrew Penner

STUDIO WEST Art Gallery & Bronze Foundry Large Selection of Sculptures & Western Art A SCULPTURE EXPERIENCE See the lost-wax bronze casting process

205 - 2nd Ave E, Bow Street & 2nd Ave E, Cochrane 403-932-2611 www.DonBeggStudioWest.ca 42 | Enter Our Photo Contest


Experience Cochrane See cochrane-tourism.ca for up to date event listings January Kimmett Cup

February Clubhouse Art Walk (Monthly event)

March Cochrane Winterfest Hunter/Jumper Show Spring Farmers Markets begin

April Foothills Art Club Show and Sale, Cochrane Brewfest

May Cochrane and District Trade Show The Cochrane Art Club Show and Sale Celebration of Music Spring Concert

June Open Doors Cochrane Extreme Cowboy Show

July Canada Day Community Festival Foothills Bucking Horse Futurity Celebrate Parks Day Dressage Show

August Shooting for A Cause Cochrane Fair Cochrane Classic Bull Riding Calgary Police Rodeo Western Dressage Show

September Cochrane Rodeo Labor Day Parade Prairie Girls Vintage Market Cochrane Outhouse Races Bud Brewster Tournament in support of STARS at Brewster’s Kananaskis Ranch Golf Course.

October Foothills Art Club Fall Sale Stockmen’s Memorial Foundation Annual Dinner & Auction

• Beautiful riverside location • 144 sites (50 & 30 amp) • Next to Spray Lake Sawmills Family Sports Centre & new pool facility • Close to all amenities & shopping • Easy access via Hwy 22 to Griffin Rd • Power, water & sewer on every site • Laundry & firewood • Central washroom & showers • Basic Wi-Fi included • Year round camping/winter storage • Highly rated Good Sam Park

The Premier Year Round Campground on the Cowboy Trail 403.932.4675 I Toll Free: 877.932.4675 900 Griffin Road East, Cochrane, AB

www.bowriversedge.com

November Cochrane Light Up Winter Wonderland Sleigh Rides at Historic Cochrane Ranche

December Christmas Farmers Market

Spring Hill RV Park

Cochrane Street Market June 20, July 18, August 15, September 19, 2019: 1st Street West, 5:00 – 9:00 pm. The Cochrane Farmers’ Market and the businesses within the Historic Downtown Cochrane invite you to experience a unique shopping experience. Enjoy market vendors, artisans, food trucks, music, buskers and late night shopping. cochranefarmersmarket.ca

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Fully serviced RV park. All amenities on site including gas station, propane, convenience store, fast food, liquor store, laundry, power/water/sewer to each site, dump station, pull thru sites, showers and laundromat. Located 7 km north of Cochrane on the corner of Hwy 22 and Hwy 567. Reservations recommended.

Ph: (403) 932-2010 info@springhillrvpark.com www.springhillrvpark.com


Experience Golfing along the Cowboy Trail Sundre Golf Club

Just a split second after impact, a wave of doubt shot through me. In the air, my ball – soaring against the snow-dusted peaks that loomed over the Kananaskis Valley – was a righteous thing of beauty. But I missed the sweet spot. Caught it on the toe. And, fearing the watery grave in front of the green was the most probable outcome, I yelled “get going!” so loud I scared away the whiskey jacks. But, as every golfer knows, once your ball is in the air you can’t really do much about the outcome. Your fate is in the hands of other powers. Thankfully, there are some things in golf that you can control. Like where you play. And, for me, one of my favourite places to peg it up in Alberta is along the beautiful Cowboy Trail. (And the moment described above took place on the iconic par-3 4th on the recently refurbished Mount Kidd Course at the Kananaskis Country Golf Course, one of my favourite holes in the world. Too bad I often hit it into the water!)

Wintergreen Golf & Country Club

Having travelled the Cowboy Trail numerous times over the years (I usually take it one section at a time), I’ve long since realized that this 700 km route is a road with plenty of riches. Stunning mountain scenes. Rolling ranchland peppered with homesteads and hay bales. Small towns oozing with rural charm. Indeed, the drive alone is worth its weight in gold. But, for golfers, “the drive” has multiple meanings! And, with dozens of beautiful courses along the route to unleash your pent-up power, “driving” golf balls can quickly take center stage. And, to be honest, it should. I’ve always thought that the rolling, variety-filled terrain along the foothills is absolutely ideal for golf. Flat parcels of land with little character just do not cut it if you want to build a compelling course! With outstanding character-filled courses in Waterton, Turner Valley, Priddis, Bragg Creek, Cochrane, Water Valley, Sundre, Rocky Mountain House and Drayton Valley, there is no shortage of excellent places to play. And there are many more courses if you include the small 9-hole courses or are willing to venture a few miles off the trail to places like Nanton, Okotoks, Kananaskis, Olds, and Whitecourt, just to name a few. In a lot of ways, the Turner Valley Golf Club, established way back in 1930, epitomizes what golf along The Cowboy Trail 44 | Enter Our Photo Contest


Experience Golfing along the Cowboy Trail is all about. The course is incredibly scenic and features a tough finish and a beautiful run of holes that plunge into the Sheep River Valley. It’s also always in gorgeous shape, boasts delicious home-cooked food in the historic clubhouse, and is unpretentious and welcoming to visitors. And, at 6445 yards from the regular tees, it’s long enough to give low handicap players a strong test in all facets of their game. Although there is a strong contingent of local members (the Turner Valley Golf Club is considered semi-private), but getting a tee time is typically not a problem. Along the Cowboy Trail many courses are situated in the foothills and have a rolling, spacious feel (after all, this is cowboy country!). Other courses meander through beautiful forests covered with spruce and pine. One such course in Bragg Creek, is Wintergreen Golf & Country Club. This course, which tumbles down rugged slopes and incorporates water features, belongs in the “mountain golf” genre. Water Valley and Pine Hills in Rocky Mountain House have a similar setting. If stunning mountain golf is your cup of tea, a short side trip off the trail to Kananaskis should definitely be considered. The Kananaskis Country Golf Course features two of the top mountain golf courses in the world. Both Mount Kidd and Mount Lorette were damaged during the 2013 flood, however, they have come back better than ever thanks to the talented work of Canmore-based golf architect, Gary Browning.

Brewster’s Kananaskis Ranch Golf Course

But, unbeknownst to many, this isn’t the only facility in the area. Cut through the pines at the base of Mount Yamnuska, the Brewster’s Kananaskis Ranch Golf Course is a sporty little gem that’s growing in popularity. Unpretentious and laid back, this is an ideal course for recreational players who don’t want to spend a couple hundred bucks on their golf day. (Green fees are just $59 during the week.) Bring a straight club off the tee as the fairways are narrow and undulating! Unfortunately, hitting it laser-straight has never been one of my virtues. Nor has controlling my distance on those riveting, water-surrounded par-3s! However, what I have discovered is that any golf round played along Alberta’s idyllic Cowboy Trail is time well spent. Photos and Story by: Andrew Penner

Photo Courtesy of Pine Hills Golf Club

45 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


The Hat Makes the Cowboy Few images are as iconic as the cowboy hat. Rugged, wild, and handsome, the cowboy hat has been and remains a favourite headgear among Albertans. First made in 1865, cowboy hats today’s are nearly identical to the original design, a tradition Alberta crafter – Hat Doctor – has celebrated for 117 years. Co-owner, Carole Leroux, gives her top tips for selecting the best cowboy hat Find the right fit: Determine what shape and size of hat best fits your head. “Try and take note of the shape of your head compared to the shape of the hat. Don’t look at the style, but the shape of the hole,” says Carole. Determine the style: The most popular style is the cattleman, where a crease extends down the middle and dented on either side. The second is the Canadian crown, a more brick shape. When selecting your style, consider both the crown and the brim. Choose your material: 100% beaver fur felt is the best quality. Other materials can include rabbit, wool, or a blend. Try to avoid wool as lacquers used to hold the shape do not allow breathability and will wash out with rain or snow.

RENOVATIONS

CLEANING

HAT

DOCTOR

SHAPING

403-936-5090 Call today to book your appointment

Proper care: While it’s said the luck runs out of your hat if you lay it on its brim, truth is, placing it on its brim tends to flatten and lose the brim shape. Carole also suggests a hat sponge and brush to keep your hat clean and dust-free. Smithbilt Hats Inc in Calgary is celebrating their 100th anniversary in 2019. Brian Hanson, master hatter with Smithbilt, offers a final tip

ESTABLISHED 1902

Custom Made 100% Beaver Fur Felt Hats

www.hatdoctor.com

Pick a colour: Beaver fur felt does not dye well. Higher quality hats come in more earth-toned colours such as brown, black, and grey. Brighter colours are made from wool or a blend.

We can bring your favorite hat

back to life!

RR 284 and Township Road 223A between Calgary and Indus, AB

Look for our Blue Highway Sign on Hwy 22X

A HAT IS AN EXTENSION OF YOUR PERSONALITY

Shape it later: When you find a hat that is the perfect colour, fit, and style then worry about shaping it later. Even if you don’t get a custom-made hat you can get your ‘off-the-rack’ hat custom fitted. If you take care of your cowboy hat properly it should last you a lifetime. Come rain, snow or shine, wear your cowboy hat and Alberta’s history proudly! “The western lifestyle really is a thing,” says Carole. “A cowboy hat is more than an image. It’s who our customers are and part of their uniform. It protects them from all the elements and they won’t go anywhere without it.” You can visit Hat Doctor at hatdoctor.com and Smithbilt Hats at smithbilthats.com and Irvines Saddles and Western Wear at irvines.ca By: Holly Heuver

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Experience Crossfield Crossfield is located 45 min northeast of Cochrane at the junction of Hwys 2A and 574. Access into Crossfield is easy as it is also adjacent to Hwy 2, the main north-south corridor between Calgary and Edmonton. You’ll find the town about 20 min north of CrossIron Mills mall in Balzac. This community’s roots run deep. Mrs. Hannington opened a stopping house, on the Calgary-Edmonton Trail in 1890. Two years later, the C & E Railway linked these two large centres by rail and a siding, 29 miles north of Calgary. That siding became identified as Crossfield, named in honour of Mr. Crossfield, an engineer with the CPR survey crew. With a population of 2,983 residents, facilities now include a splash park, library, parks, rodeo grounds, curling rink, fish ponds, golf course and wetlands. The Pete Knight Memorial Centre is named after a famous rodeo star. It is a venue for winter sports like minor hockey and hosts a Farmers’ Market. Pete Knight Days run June 7 & 8. It features a Demolition Derby and the Pete Knight Rodeo. The Wild, Wild West! starts at 6pm Friday (1pm on Sat). There’s a dance both nights at 9pm, a parade on Saturday and fireworks at 11pm.

Numerous services are available in the Town of Crossfield for travellers, including several restaurants, hotel, groceries, pharmacy, gas bars and lots more. However, one of the major retailers in the area became so big that they had to get out of town. You will find Irvine’s Saddles & Western Wear about 6 km NE of Crossfield, and it is worth the drive. Irvine’s prides itself as being Canada’s Largest Western Store. They were established as a family run business in 2004. With over 75,000 sq ft of retail space, they carry more inventory than most other western stores. You will find everything from western apparel to saddles and from giftware to all your rodeo gear – if it fits the western life-style they have it! Where are you off to next? If you’re off to explore Alberta’s Special Areas, head north to Township Rd 292 and follow it and Hwy 575 east, past Acme and Carbon to Drumheller. To learn more be sure to pick up a copy of Experience the Dinosaur Trails. Heading to The Cowboy Trail? Follow Hwy 574 west until Hwy 22 (just a 30 min drive) and then drive north towards Cremona, or south to Cochrane.

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Photo Courtesy of the Town of Sundre

Cowboy Up in Sundre, Alberta Grab your boots and hat, cause 2019 marks 40th anniversary of the Sundre Pro Rodeo. Come celebrate June 21 - 23! Located in the foothills of the Canadian Rockies, about 100 km northwest of Calgary, along Hwy 22, Sundre has a population of 2,700. Incorporated as a town in 1956, Sundre takes its name from the town of Søndre (meaning “south”), Norway. Sundre’s main attraction throughout the year is arguably their Pioneer Village Museum, which celebrates “The Way We Were”. It also features the Chester Mjolsness World of Wildlife, an exhibit of 150 mounted animals from across the world. However, for some truly western hospitality, the Sundre Pro Rodeo is the place to be in late-June. Expect down in the dirt action, up close and personal. Don’t miss the gut wrenching bull riding - there’s not a bad seat in the house! The FREE pancake breakfast helps to kick off the Sundre Pro Rodeo! Volunteers serve up the grub with a “Howdy” and a big smile. Its held on the IGA parking lot, on main street and features live music. Here, you will be in a terrific position to enjoy one of the greatest parades this side of the Rockies! The Saturday morning parade (over 120 entries every year!), is a definite crowd pleaser and has been a tradition for as long as the Sundre Rodeo has been running. The theme for 2019 will be  “Night at the Movies”. You will enjoy the bands, floats, entertainers, Shriners, gorgeous ladies and handsome hunks on their beautiful horses.

The rodeo gets underway at 9am, Friday June 21 with a Rodeo Slack. Be sure to attend the Warm-Up BBQ at 11am and the evening fireworks. But the biggest event of the day might just be the Annual BS Bingo. This bingo consists of a 24 x 24 pen of 81 squares (the Bingo Card) and the bull “Rusty”. Participants buy each square for $75. The winner will be determined by the bull, who “dumps” on a square. Held at 5pm, just outside of the west grandstand. It’s sure to Make a Splash! Other events include the Cowboy Cabaret, with entertainment by Jamie Woodfin, Saturday evening from 9pm - 3pm, at the skating arena. And, for the first time ever at the Sundre Pro Rodeo, Indian Relay Races! If you’re coming for the weekend. There’s RV parking right on the rodeo grounds where there’s also a Farmers Market, Beer Gardens, concessions and more! The kiddies will enjoy the Mutton Bustin’, Wild Cow Milking, Wild Horse/Pony Races and Junior Barrel Racing. And the whole family is sure to be entertained by Dennis  Halstead, 2x Canadian Finals Rodeo Clown and a Trick Riding Team performing breathtaking stunts and daredevil maneuvers. There really is no better way to spend a weekend then at the Sundre Pro Rodeo with your friends and family! Weekend Passes are only $65 for Adults and $50 for Students. Day Passes are available. For more information visit sundrerodeo.com

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2019 Rodeo Schedule Rodeo

Date Town/City Website

Drayton Valley Pro Rodeo

May 1-4

Drayton Valley

Stavely Indoor Pro Rodeo

May 9-11

Stavely

stavelyprorodeo.com

Innisfail

rodeocanada.com

Innisfail Night at the Ranch Rodeo May 11

draytonvalley.ca

Alder Flats Rodeo

May 24-25

Alder Flats

Mayerthorpe Indoor Rodeo

May 24-26

Mayerthorpe

Grande Prairie Stompede

May 29-June 2

Grande Prairie

Leduc Black Gold Rodeo

May 30-June 2

Leduc

June 8-9

Rocky Mtn House

Innisfail Pro Rodeo

June 14-16

Innisfail

rodeocanada.com

Bonnyville Pro Rodeo

June 14-15

Bonnyville

rodeocanada.com

Sundre Pro Rodeo

June 21-23

Sundre

sundrerodeo.com

Wainwright Pro Rodeo

June 20-23

Wainwright

rodeocanada.com

Guy Weadick Days

June 22-23

High River

highriverag.com

Ponoka Stampede

June 25-July 1

Ponoka

ponokastampede.com

Airdrie Pro Rodeo

June 28-30

Airdrie

airdrieprorodeo.com

Raymond Stampede

June 30

Raymond

Benalto Pro Rodeo

July 4-7

Benalto

Buck Lake Stampede

July 12-14

Buck Lake

Calgary Stampede

July 5-14

Calgary

July 17

Dogpound

fcarodeo.com

Carstairs Rodeo

July 19-20

Carstairs

cararodeo.com

Millarville Rodeo

July 19-21

Millarville

Bowden Pro Rodeo

July 27

Bowden

Strathmore Stampede

Aug 2-5

Strathmore

Pincher Creek Pro Rodeo

Aug 15-18

Pincher Creek

Didsbury Rodeo

Aug 16-17

Didsbury

didsburyagsociety.org

Aug 18

Bar U Ranch

friendsofthebaru.com

Aug 23-24

Okotoks

okotoksprorodeo.com

Cochrane Lions Rodeo

Aug 31-Sept 1

Cochrane

fcarodeo.com

Canadian Finals Rodeo

Oct 29-30

Red Deer

cfrreddeer.com

Rocky Pro Rodeo

The Dogpound Rodeo

Old Time Ranch Rodeo Okotoks Pro Rodeo

49 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

alderflats.ca wrarodeo.com gpstompede.com blackgoldrodeo.com rockyrodeo.com

raymond.ca benaltoagsociety.ca bucklakestampede.com calgarystampede.com

millarvilleracetrack.com rodeocanada.com strathmorestampede.com pinchercreekprorodeo.com


Experience The Heart of the Cowboy Trail Flanked by mountains and foothills, the Cowboy Trail offers

Heading north along the Cowboy Trail we stop in Caroline,

dramatic scenery and off the beaten path adventures. At the

curious about the old buildings by the campground. We’ve

heart of the trail, from Sundre to Rocky Mountain House,

serendipitously stumbled upon the Caroline Wheels of Time

you can truly get away from it all. Enjoy the outdoors without

Museum. John takes us on an engaging tour where we don

crowds; experience whitewater rafting, mountain biking, trail

jailbird stripes for a photo in lockup, sit in a vintage fire truck,

riding, fishing, world class golf, and more. When it’s time to

put on the Dunce’s cap in the old schoolhouse, then check

hang up your boots, sleep in a trapper’s tent like the explorer

out the artifacts in the main building. He knew just what the

David Thompson did two centuries ago (cabins, tipis, ranch

kids would be most interested in and even drew caricatures for

and hotel lodging also available).

them! Open weekends May long weekend through September long weekend. Admission by donation.

Sundre is still “The Plain of the Grand View.” The Rocky Mountains stretch across the western horizon, rising high

Our next stop is the Rocky Mountain House National Historic

above the foothills, and the Red Deer River flows through

Site. Here, my children learned how to to start a fire with

town. To learn more about Sundre, named for the first post-

their bare hands (a flint and steel may have helped), cooked

master’s hometown of Søndre, Norway, we visit the Sundre

bannock over a fire, and re-enacted going down the river

Pioneer Village Museum then go on an indoor safari at the

to the trading post with Metis traders. We took a Minecraft-

Chester Mjolsness World of Wildlife (an impressive collection

themed virtual reality tour of the grounds when the forts were

of 170+ bird and animal mounts). After delicious apple wood

standing, checked out the Metis village and play fort, watched

smoked ribs at Kodiak BBQ, we explore Snake Hill Recreation

bison graze in the paddock, and enjoyed a musical puppet

Area and attempt golfing at Sundre Golf Course – a 6,778

show about David Thompson. Staying onsite made it possible

yard, Par 72 course with beautiful tree-lined fairways and the

for us to experience everything the historic site has to offer. We

best patio in town. We dine al fresco before checking in to

highly recommend heritage camping (stay in a trapper’s tent,

Mountain View Inn and Suites.

tipi, or cabin) for an immersive, unforgettable experience. Open mid May to September 30. Free admission for Parks

We head out west bright and early in the hopes of seeing some

Canada Discovery Passholders.

wild horses before our trail ride. Near the Forestry Trunk Road junction, we are greeted by a herd of horses with playful foals

Rocky Mountain House your “Gateway to Adventure” is just

in tow. These are just a few of the 600 wild (feral to be correct)

south of Crimson Lake Provincial Park. This family-favorite

horses in the area. Soon, we are astride their tamer cousins at

is the place to go for paddling, beach time, and biking. Play

Sunset Guiding & Outfitters. My husband and children are

on the sandy beach, paddle out to Raspberry Island, or bike

newbie riders, but their jitters subside when they realize how

the Amerada Trail. If you’re ambitious, you can bike all the

gentle the horses are. As we head into the hills with our guides,

way to town or Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site!

Merle and Larry, it’s like we’ve gone back in time. There are

Campsites are a short walk to the water and there are several

no houses, roads, or other riders on the trail.

interpretive programs to choose from. Book in advance as this campground is very popular. The fun continues year round

After a pleasant night at Sunset Guiding, we drive to Mukwah

with skating, snowshoeing and cross country skiing.

Rafting. Alan gets us outfitted and before we hit the water does a safety orientation. Over the next few hours, we all work as a

You could easily spend a week in the heart of the Cowboy Trail

team to tackle progressively bigger rapids with fun names like

and still have plenty to see next time. Where will you go first?

Fluffy Bunny and Moustache Ride (the third class rapids are pretty big!). We do a little cliff jumping too.

Photos and Story By: Karen Ung 50 | Enter Our Photo Contest


Experience The Heart of the Cowboy Trail

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Experience Metis Culture and History

Louis Riel and his associates, Manitoba. Photo Courtesy of Glenbow Museum (na-1039-1)

The first European settlement north of Florida was established by French explorers Samuel de Champlain and Pierre de Monts, first on St. Croix Island (known as Maine today), then at Port Royal, in Acadia (present-day Nova Scotia). In 1608, Champlain built a fortress at what is now Quebec City. The first encounters between settlers and First Nations, and the years to follow building Canada into a Nation, did not unfold without confrontation, cultural barriers, and wars, leaving behind legacies of generational damage that are still in the process of reconciliation and will be for generations to come.

women knew natural medicines and how to live off the land. Traditional knowledge of the First Nations women, along side the European male settlers search for prosperity and structural development, would play a vital role in the initial steps towards what we know today as Canada.

The connection between Metis Culture and The Horse

The irony in this history is that a distinct and strong culture formed unifying customs, characteristics, social habits, music, language and art encompassing the diversity of the bloodlines into a nation of vibrant people known as the Metis.

Interestingly, about the time the Metis culture evolved came the arrival of the horse to the northern continent – which speaks to the Metis way of life to follow. The battle for freedom of rights, to be recognized and acknowledged as an Indigenous people, the buffalo hunts, breaking the land for farming and ranching are aspects of the initial Metis survival and livelihood foundations shaping traditions and characteristics; a journey that relied on the partnership between the horse and Metis.

In the beginning, the European men, who were new to the harsh environment and ways of survival, came here without families or wives. First nations women and European men married not just for companionship but also for survival as the

“I remember my Grandpa standing in the kitchen talking to my mom in French about chasing Buffalo over a cliff in North Dakota and shooting them off his horse.� says Metis Elder Clarence Houle.

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Experience Metis Culture and History In the 1960’s in northern Alberta, Oliver Travis trailed bucking horses from the west across country from a few hundred miles away so the Metis families could start holding bush rodeos. Still to this day, these families and communities gather for rodeos along with First Nations and local ranchers to create another ‘rodeo’ family. The diversity of connectors speaks to the history of the Metis roles as guides for explorers and as interpreters between First Nations, Government, and settlers due to the ability to speak many languages. On the European side, French and English were fluent and on the First Nations side Cree, Dene, and Ojibway were common. In the beginning, the combination of Cree and French shaped a unique language known as Michif, which is still spoken today – remaining the official recognized language of Metis people. Difficult times came about with settlement of the west and the Government establishing reserves for First Nations. The Metis struggled to secure their homes and communities. Louis Riel and Gabriel Dumont lead the Red River Resistance from 1869 - 1870, which resulted in the Manitoba Act establishing land rights for the Metis. In 1885, the Northwest Resistance sought to protect Metis land. As a result Louis Riel, at the age of 41, was charged for high treason and hung in November.

Michel Quesnelle, North-West Mounted Police scout, 1875. Photo Courtesy of Glenbow Museum (na-3409-1)

Louis Riel, an iconic historical Canadian character said, “I am more convinced everyday that without a single exception I did right. And I have always believed that, as I have acted honestly, the time will come when the people of Canada will see and acknowledge it.” The historical timelines, and the aim for reconciliation and rights, encompasses a people sustained by a vital work ethic, resilience, and faith. Metis families today, pull together for days of music, dance, traditional food, healing and laughter. The essence of Metis resides in their blood, their dance steps and generational customs. Riding upon their trusted four legged partners – the horse – and stepping light to the Jig in the evenings, strumming songs from dusk ‘til dawn, walking the trapline, cooking bone marrow with bannock on the fire, making the sign of the cross, laying tabaco to give back to the land what they take, home fire keepers (Mothers), the providers (Fathers), the leaders of survival, all these and more thrive in the heart of Metis people. By: Carmen Houle

John McGillis, Metis, on bucking horse “Piebald” at Vulcan Stampede, Vulcan, Alberta. Photo Courtesy of Glenbow Museum (na-4354-9)

53 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com


Experience The Alberta Trail

My name is Rob Lennard, and I’m known across Alberta as “The History Wrangler”. I am a passionate Historian who wears many hats including that of the Historian and Director of Education & Outreach at the Historic Bow Valley Ranche, Ambassador of the Cowboy Trail and Judge for the Governor General of Canada History Awards.  The province is full of proud citizens. However, I would wager very few Albertans know that September 1st is the annual day commemorating the establishment of the province. And in the summer of 2017, I came up with a great idea to help educate Albertans about this special date. A Twitter follower of mine, who had the twitter account named after a highway in Alberta, Hwy 555, inspired the idea. This led me to research the names of Alberta roadways. I discovered that numerous highways, apart from Hwy 22 - The Cowboy Trail, had a name of a trail associated with their number. These included Hwy 33 (Grizzly Trail), Hwy 41 (The Buffalo Trail), and Hwy 61 (Red Coat Trail).

My idea? Have Hwy 19 named The Alberta Trail. Why, you ask? Alberta’s birthday is the first day of the ninth month of the year as in 1/9, or 19. Next step, a formal letter was written to the Minister of Transportation, the Honorable Brian Mason. His response was  very positive. He referred me to Michael Botros of Alberta  Transportation.  After meeting with him, I worked with his team to create the sign and have it installed and ready for the official re-naming ceremonies on Alberta’s 113th birthday, September 1st, 2018.  Next, in keeping with the Alberta  tradition of having school children involved with deciding  Alberta symbols,  a tradition dating back to 1930 when it was decided the provincial flower would be the Wild Rose, we had over 1200  young students decide which one of the final three slogans should go on the Highway 19, Alberta Trail sign.  Their choice – “Our Great Province, Est. 1st day, 9th month, 1905” The September 1st unveiling ceremony was an exciting  twopart event that included numerous VIP’s, Her Honour Lois

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Experience The Alberta Trail Mitchell, the Lieutenant Governor of Alberta. Joining her were several MLA’s including the Honourable Shaye Anderson, Mark Smith and mayors including Mayor Ray Ralph from Devon and Tanni Doblanko from the County of Leduc.

of the Hwy 19, Alberta Trail Award. It is to be presented to the fastest driver on Alberta’s birthday each year at Castrol Raceway. The winning driver was from Red Deer and he was clocked at 244 miles per hour! His name was engraved on the prestigious award and he also received a full-sized Alberta flag for the accomplishment.

The first event was held at the Leduc #1 Museum and Energy Discovery Centre, which is located on Hwy 19, Alberta Trail. It included several speeches to celebrate the official unveiling of the sign for Alberta’s 113th birthday and the cutting of the birthday cake. It is a wonderful coincidence that the birth of Alberta’s modern day prosperity started with the Leduc #1 oil discovery in 1948. This site is located close to Hwy 19. 

When I started researching the whereabouts of Hwy 19, I thought the highway might have been found in one of the far reaches of the province. It was a pleasant surprise to discover that the 12.5 km highway, running between the QE2 (Hwy 2) and Hwy 60, is the second busiest 2-lane highway in Alberta. 6 million drivers will be seeing the large Hwy 19, Alberta Trail signs every year. Exciting news indeed  for an historian who wants Albertans to learn about the birth of their great province!

The second event was held at the Castrol Raceway, Western Canada’s largest racetrack,  also located on Hwy 19, Alberta Trail. Her Honour Lois Mitchell addressed the crowd, shared the name change of the highway and announced the launch

Rochfort Bridge Sangudo

Mayerthorpe

Alaska

43 Highway

22

Edson

Photos and Story By: Rob Lennard

757

Evansburg Entwistle

16

Wabamun

22

16

Spruce Grove

Edmonton

to Lloydminster

Wabamun Indian Reserve

60

21

753

19 Leduc

Drayton Valley

Lodgepole

Devon

620

Breton

Buck Creek Buck Lake

Alder Flats

Winfield

13

Wetaskiwin

53

12

Caroline

Rocky Mountain House

21 53

2

22

11

Ponoka

Rimbey

Sylvan Lake

55 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com

Lacombe

12 Red Deer

26

611

2A

20

O’Chiese Indian Reserve

Nordegg

Millet

Buck Lake Indian Reserve

620

Sun Child Indian Reserve

15

Morinville

37


Experience The Northern Leg Rocky Mountain House has been tagged the “Gateway to Adventure” and there are hundreds of miles of wooded foothills and front-range mountains to explore. Hook up with a well-established outfitter to try your hand at working cattle, backcountry trail riding, canoeing rivers, or just relaxing.

Mayerthorpe is affectionately referred to as the “Trails End” because it is located at the northern terminus of the Cowboy Trail. This is where Hwy 22 intersects Hwy 43, which is also known as the CANAMEX Trade Corridor (a key route that connects Canada to Mexico).

Fur traders put Rocky Mountain House on the map 200 years ago when the North West Company and the Hudson’s Bay Company established trading posts on the banks of the North Saskatchewan River. The trading post fort was deserted in 1875, however it lives on today as a National Historic Site that commemorates the era of the fur traders and explorers.

This town took its name from “Mayer,” an engineer who homesteaded close by in 1908. Be sure to check out the Ol’ Pembina River Ferry Crossing, the Rochfort Bridge, and the Elevator Museum.

Stroll through archaeological remains of the four forts at the Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site. Your kids will love the pint-sized play fort, puppet theatre, and real live bison. Stay awhile to discover the Métis skills of the fur trade. Camp in Indigenous trapper’s tents and tipis. Dive deeper into the past and the stories of this place. Book a hands-on experience for your family. All supplies are included in the program fee. Make your own woolen moccasins, or dream catcher. Work alongside a blacksmith to create a lovely candlestick holder for the traditional candle you just made from beeswax. Learn how their hunting tools and weapons evolved from throwing knives to flint lock guns to the cannon. Try your hand at throwing, firing, and even cannon blasting! For more information and to book call 403-845-2412.

Mayerthorpe is an agricultural community. It provides an abundance of western experiences such as horseback riding, ag fairs and cowboy heritage. Ranching is important to the economy here and to the preservation of the rustic ranching lifestyle that is so much a part of Alberta’s ranching heritage! Mayerthorpe’s Fallen Four Memorial Park commemorate the sacrifice of 4 RCMP Officers who died in the line of duty March 3, 2005. It pays tribute to all fallen peace officers and first responders. The park is visited by 7000 people each year to pay their respects. The Fallen Four Memorial Park is open to the public 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. The Visitor Information Center and gift shop are open each summer until the end of September. You can make an appointments for a guided tour by phoning (780) 786-4990, or simply by writing to info@fallenfour.ca.

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Capture Your Experience for a Chance to WIN

Photo Courtesy of Andrew Penner

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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 Lodges 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 Greenford 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, 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 43 for more information Bow Rivers Edge Campground, Cochrane info@bowriversedge.com | 403-932-4675 Open Apr. 1 - Nov. 1 | 144 Sites | Fees: $45-$50 Ammenities: Flush Toilets, Showers, Sani Dump, Disabled Access, Firepits 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

May 3 | Nov. 18 Apr. 13 | Nov. 18 May 3 | Sept. 2 May 3 | Oct. 7 Apr. 19 | Oct. 21 May 17 | Sept. 22 Year round May 15 | Sept. 2 May 3 | Oct. 7 Year round June 14 | Sept. 2 May 9 | Oct. 14 May 9 | Oct. 14 May 15 | Sept. 15 June 21 | Sept. 2 May 15 | Oct. 14 May 15 | Sept. 2 May 15 | Sept. 3 May 1 | Oct. 8 May 15 | Sep. 16 May 15 | Sep. 16 Year round May 15| Sept. 17 May 15 | Sept. 10 May 15 | Sept. 10 Year round May 15 | Sept. 17 May 15 | Sept. 17 May 1 | Oct. 8 May 1 | Oct. 8 May 15 | Sept. 2 May 16 | Sept. 15 May 16 | Sept. 15 May 15 | Sept. 2 May 16 | Sept. 2 May 16 | Sept. 2 Sept. 2 | Nov. 30 May 1 | Sept. 3 May 1 | Oct. 8 May 1 | Oct. 8 May 1 | Oct. 9 May 1 | Oct. 14 May 1 | Sept. 16 May 1 | Sept. 16 May 1 | Sept. 16 May 1 | Oct. 8 Apr. 28 | Sept. 18

$28/$40 66 59 $26 36 $26 28 $26/$40 173 131 • • $26/$33 124 34 • • $31.50 30 • • $32.50/41/43/48 229 74 35 88 • • $26 51 $26 134 $26 10 $26 50 $26/$40 130 69 • • • $26/$39 118 35 • • $26 95 $26 44 tent $26 48 $26 50 $26 55 $26 85 $26 94 $32 46 $26/$33 170 96 • • $26 98 $33 15 $26 34 $26 30 $26 66 $33 17 $33 112 112 • • $39/$40 41 21 • • $26 102 $26 61 $33 10 $26 13 $26 32 $26 6 $26/$33 20 $308 30 $308 55 $308 169 $308 53 $26 80 $308 14 $308 50 $308 17 $308 34 • $20 12

Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site pc.gc.ca/rockymountainhouse | 1-403-845-2412 Open May 16 - Sept 2; Thurs - Sun: Sept 5 - 29 43 Sites | Fees: $35-$120 Ammenities: Flush Toilets, Showers, Interpretive Program, Firepits Camp at the national historic site! Variety of options from Heritage Camping in Tipi’s and Trapper tents, to un-serviced RV camping and walk-in tenting on the banks of the North Saskatchewan River.

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.

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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 Adanac Adventures, Crowsnest Pass adanacadventures.com | 403-399-2331 Open Year Round | 10 Sites | Fees: $25 Ammenities: Firepits 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


Sample Lodging Special

MyMayerthorpe

@Mayerthorpe1

Our Local Businesses and Attractions Welcome You... Mayerthorpe is proud of its community. Surrounded by picturesque rolling hills, steeped in rich agricultural history, and bustling with friendly businesses and engaging recreational activities – this town truly is Everybody’s Community. While in town check out the Fallen Four Memorial Park, the Cowboy Trail Storyboard located along Highway 22 or our outdoor swimming pool and waterslide open June 1 - August 31.

Don’t miss our upcoming events Indoor Rodeo: May 24 - 26, 2019

Culture Days: September 28, 2019

4-H Beef Show & Sale: June 3, 2019

Kin Club Christmas Market: November 16, 2019

Agricultural Fair: August 10 - 11, 2019

Christmas Light-Up: December 6, 2019

www.mayerthorpe.ca


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2019 Experience the Cowboy Trails  

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