The Cowboy Trails
12 Helpful Map Pages Boot Buying Craft Beer Old Forts Castle Parks OH Ranch Rodeo Schedule
YOU DESERVE A BEVERAGE RIGHT ABOUT NOW
A romp through Mother Nature’s backyard whether on a bike, horse or your own two feet deserves a refreshing reward. Step into one of Bragg Creek’s many eateries to quench that thirst or hunger pang.
The Bragg Creek & Area Chamber of Commerce
Proudly supported by
PHOTO CONTEST Share your Cowboy Experience to Win
Photo Courtesy of Royce Olsen
Prizes Include: Western Getaway
Bar U Ranch - Entry for 2 Adult (Youth under 17 are free) - Four tickets for the Cowboy Cuisine Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump - 2 hr Guided Tour w/ Blackfoot Guide - 3 hr Interactive Basics of Buffalo Hunting Remington Carriage Museum - Carriage Ride - Special Tours - Dinner for 4
The Great Canadian Barn Dance
- 4 Country Style Buffet Dinner - Barn Dance Tickets (2 Adult and 2 Youth) - 2 Nights Stay in our Family Campground
Stoney Nakoda Resort
Photo Courtesy of Cheri Conners/ Harttphotos
- 2 nightâ€™s accommodation - Voucher for buffet dinner for 2 people - Continental breakfast each morning
ExperienceTravelGuides.com/Contests Early Bird Contest Closes July 15, 2018. Contest Closes November 24, 2018. Full details on above website.
Photo Courtesy of Chiara Cei
Photo Courtesy of Royce Olsen
BALZAC Come have fun for a day or two
Enjoy watching horse races from around the world at 18 sites in Southern Alberta, brought to you by Century Bets! - the exclusive off-track betting network provider for Southern Alberta.
Featuring over 200 stores and 100 outlets, unique services, and a glimpse into the history, culture and landmarks of Alberta, CrossIron Mills is a must-see destination.
Come visit the newly built Days Inn Calgary North Balzac hotel, the closest hotel to CrossIron Mills - Albertaâ€™s largest shopping mall. Hot Breakfast, Pool & Waterslide, Family Suites
FIND OUT MORE AT
BALZAC BUSINESS COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION
Balzac To Banf Banff
Blue Grass Nursery, Sod & Garden Centre is your one stop shop for all your landscaping and gardening needs. Serving Balzac and area for almost 30 years. Largest selection of prairie hardy plants and horticultural materials.
Bucars is Calgaryâ€™s first RV dealer with great products and great customer service serving Southern Alberta since 1959. Winner of North American Top 50 Dealer Award 2016, 2017. Nominated RVDA Dealer of the year two years in a row.
Join us at Century Downs Racetrack and Casino, offering the ultimate gaming experience, with live horse racing, pari-mutuel wagering and over 600 exciting slot machines and VLTs.
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 most 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. At the movies, Clint Eastwood and John Wayne were the definition of not only a cowboy, but a real man. Times have changed. You don’t see many kids running around the neighbourhood with “cap guns” and it’s no longer
politically correct to use the term “Indian”. Our western heroes are now portrayed by Brad Pitt, Kevin Costner, Kurt Russell, Robert Duvall, and Jeff Bridges, but as evidenced by the popularity of the TV series Heartland, everyone is still fascinated by our western culture! Welcome to the sixth edition of Experience the Cowboy Trails, an annual visitor’s guide to the 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. To view or download this magazine to your mobile device, check out experiencetravelguides.com/library
Andrew Penner is
Lee Hart is a long-time
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. (The Craft Beer ‘Boom’ Hits Alberta pg 50)
Calgary writer. He began his writing career working as a newspaper reporter in his home province of Ontario before moving west 45 years ago. While the first half of his career he worked as a writer and editor with various weekly and daily newspaper, for the past 30 years he has specialized as a writer and editor for agricultural publications. (Small Town Rodeos pg 12)
passions brought her to Alberta in pursuit of a career as a government relation 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. (OH Ranch pg 24)
is a writer and tourism marketer who’s enjoyed Western Canadian road trips since childhood.
(Saddle Up for a Great Time 28)
6 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Now, he shares that love of the west with visitors through his writing and custom guided tours. Reach him at email@example.com
(Experience the Old Forts Trail pg 10)
Experience the Cowboy Trails Welcome to the 2018 - 2019 Edition of Experience The Cowboy Trails
Table of Contents Communities
CMI Publishing is a div. of Complete Marketing Inc., a privately-owned company with offices in Calgary, Ab. We specialize in the production of our Experience Travel Guides & Maps in print as well as digital formats. Printed copies are delivered to our distribution outlets throughout 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 Karchewski firstname.lastname@example.org • Kris Nielson email@example.com
Book Keeper: Adrienne Albrecht, firstname.lastname@example.org Distribution: Through most Visitor Information Centres, AMA travel offices, Chinook Country Tourist Association, retail stores, attractions, and hotels & motels in the region. For a complete list: experiencethecowboytrail.com/about-us
Cartographer: Rob Storeshaw, email@example.com
Special Thanks to: Rob Lennard, The History Wrangler and Ambassador of the Cowboy Trail, Judy Fleetham, Justine Howse, and Holly Heuver
Editor: Larry Thomas firstname.lastname@example.org
Cover photo: Courtesy of Andrew Penner Title: “Cowboy Silhouette” Taken: Calgary, AB
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
2018 Leighton Art Centre June 1 Sunset Soirée Gala Fundraiser
LEIGHTON ART CENTRE
We Grow Artists!
June 2-3 Clothesline Festival & Art Sale June 16 - September 23 Exhibition: Bison bison bison July & August Art & Nature Summer Day Camps for kids aged 6-14 September 29-30 Annual Fall Paint-Out, Alberta Culture Days Celebration November 3-4 & 10-11 Christmas in the Country Art Sale
Hours of Operation:
June 1 - Nov 11: Tues - Sun, 10am - 4pm Nov 12 - May 31: Tues - Sat, 10am - 4pm
Gallery Shop Summer Day Camps Arts Sales & Festivals
Alder Flats 58 Balzac 4 Black Diamond (Diamond Valley) 26 Bragg Creek 2, 40, 63 Cardston 18 Caroline 31, 62 Cochrane 44-49 Crossfield 52 Drayton Valley 56 Longview & The Bar U Ranch 22 Mayerthorpe 59-61 Pincher Creek 19 Rocky Mountain House 58 Sundre 31, 59 Turner Valley (Diamond Valley) 26 Waterton 18
Specialty Pages A Classic Cowboy Country Road Trip 54 A Peek at the History of the OH Ranch 24 Alberta’s History Wrangler 15 Calgary Stampede 64 Campground Directory 62 Castle Provincial Parks 20 Experience the Old Forts Trail 10 Farmers’ Markets 39 How to Buy Cowboy Boots 42 Montana Slim: The Yodelling Cowboy 9 Reader Contests 3, 30 Rodeo Schedule 13 Saddle Up for a Great Time 28 Small Town Rodeos 12 TheCowboyTrail.com 31-34 The Craft Beer ‘Boom” Hits Alberta 50 The Mead ‘Boom” Hits Alberta 36-38
Map Pages VISIT OUR
Featuring Canadian art and fine craft! Present this ad for 10% OFF your purchase* *Discount does not apply to feature art gallery exhibitions or during art festivals & sales. Valid until Dec 21, 2018.
7 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
Alberta Map 8 Bragg Creek 41 Castle Provincial Parks 21 Cochrane 48 Cowboy Trail 16 Old Forts Trail 11
Experience the Cowboy Trails
Alberta Fast Facts Capital City: Edmonton Population: 4.32 million History: Entered Canadian Confederation in 1905 Total Area: 661,848 km sq/255,541 mi sq Highest Point: Mount Columbia, 3,747 m/12,293 ft Lowest Point: Slave River, 152 m/499 ft above sea level Longest River: Peace River, 1,923 km/1,195 mi Provincial Flower: Wild Rose Provincial Tree: Lodgepole Pine Provincial Bird: Great Horned Owl Provincial Fish: Bull Trout Provincial Motto: â€œStrong and Freeâ€?
8 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Montana Slim: The Yodelling Cowboy The Trail Riders of the Canadian Rockies (TRCR) formed in 1923 and were instrumental in the career start of well-known country singer Wilf Carter (aka Montana Slim, the yodelling cowboy). Wilf was born December 18, 1904 in Port Hilford, Nova Scotia. Inspired at an early age by a yodeller passing through town, he began to practice and developed his own unique “echo” yodel. Wilf worked a short stint in the lumber woods in Nova Scotia before drifting to the Alberta grain fields.
Return to the road
Eventually Wilf began singing at the local dances and in 1930 was hired to sing for a radio station’s Friday night hoedowns. He also accepted an invitation from the Brewster Transport Company to entertain and worked as a packer on the rides during the day for the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) trail rides through the Rockies. At night, trail riders gathered around the campfire as Wilf told stories, sang and yodelled. Two of his well-known songs were “Bluebird on Your Windowsill” and “Strawberry Roan”.
Wilf had a simple, honest sound and his guitar playing had a universal appeal. He wrote hundreds of songs covering a wide range of themes, including traditional country western, folk, cowboy, and hobo songs. His recordings of “Blue Canadian Rockies” and “You Are My Sunshine” are among the most popular. Wilf Carter passed away in Florida in 1996.
In 1933, while Wilf worked with the TRCR, a CPR talent scout signed him as an entertainer on the maiden voyage of the British ship S.S. Empress. Later that year, he stopped off in Montreal and recorded two songs he had just written: “My Swiss Moonlight Lullaby” and also “The Capture of Albert Johnson”. The recording became a best seller within a year from the time Wilf signed with the record firm RCA. That same year he wrote and recorded “Pete Knight, The King of the Cowboys,” which also became a hit. In 1935, Wilf moved to New York City, where he performed on WABC radio. He also hosted a CBS country music radio program for two years until 1937. During this time, someone tagged him with the name “Montana Slim,” and the name stuck over the years. In 1937, Wilf returned to Alberta and purchased a ranch. He continued to appear on both American and Canadian radio shows, as well as perform live concerts. In 1940, Wilf seriously injured his back in a car accident in Montana. He was unable to perform for much of the decade, but his popularity was sustained by the periodic release of new recordings. He sold his ranch in 1949 and moved his family to a farm in New Jersey.
In 1949, Wilf resumed live performances with tours in Canada and the United States. Soon he started touring with his own show - “The Family Show With The Folks You Know”. Wilf performed for the first time at the Calgary Stampede in 1964, and often appeared on the TV show hosted by Canadian country singer Tommy Hunter.
Publisher’s note: Ironically, Wilf could not read music. And to think he got his career started with the TRCR - one of our claims to fame! visit trailridevacations.com By: Judy Fleetham
your inner cowboy/cowgirl in the majestic Canadian Rockies!
…the best vacation of your life™ 6-day adventure dream getaways Designed for “city slickers” and advanced riders Great food and live entertainment; Five Star Trip Advisor rating! Teepee/tents with cots and mattresses; hot water and a shower!
9 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
Experience the Old Forts Trail North Wes t Mounted Police office Image cou rs pose at Fo rtesy of Ko otenai Bro rt Macleod wn Pionee . r Vilalge.
rtesy age cou
1874 Old Fort Woop-Up a Alt ge rid thb Le ar Ne Image courtesy of ces Peel’s Prairie Provin a.ca), ert alb y.u rar lib (peel.
The history of forts in North America is a long and complex one. Rivalries, sometimes brutal, were common between fur trading companies, European nations, and First Nations.
as far south as Yellowstone in southern Montana. The antipathy between these two nations helped shape the story of Canada’s west for over a hundred years.
Starting with the arrival of the Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC) in 1670, the fur trade quickly became a rapacious, productive, and not entirely a peaceful process. Just as in today’s world, individual nation’s economies rose and fell depending on their trading relationships or fortuitous geography.
When the Blackfoot dared to travel northward to HBC’s Fort Edmonton to trade they did so in force out of concern over conflict. But trade they did. For the allure of European goods was compelling. ‘Thunder sticks’, or rifles, were the iPhones of their day, an absolutely essential piece of technology helping transform one’s life, specifically in the ability to hunt and feed a family - or to engage in war.
In eastern Canada, Iroquois and Cree Nations, for example, prospered in the early days from their relationship with the Hudson’s Bay Company. Eventually, as their own lands were depleted of viable furs, the HBC encouraged their indigenous suppliers to migrate westward, either peaceably or forcefully, into new hunting grounds. By 1774, many forts were being established is now today’s Alberta by both the HBC at Fort Edmonton and their bitter rivals the Northwest Company at Fort Chipewyan north of Fort McMurray. Aided by their European muskets, the Cree Nation’s westward expansion eventually brought them into contact, and often conflict, with the Blackfoot confederacy, a nation covering much of what is now southern Alberta and Saskatchewan and
By the 1830’s, the Blackfoot Confederacy was seen as North America’s last great untapped market by a new wave of fort builders – American fur and whiskey traders. Prohibited by law from trading whiskey to U.S. tribes, they would haul their goods in large wagons overland to Canadian territory where there was no cavalry to bother them. For early traders, like those at the notorious ‘Fort Whoop-Up’, which was originally built by Americans and known as Fort Hamilton near today’s Lethbridge, the new market was a gold mine! Buffalo fur robes that might take a native woman many months to create, were purchased sometimes for just a cup of
10 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Experience the Old Forts Trail rotgut whiskey. Their worth increased immensely once shipped south. In one winter during the first days of this fort, more than 70 Blackfoot died or were killed as a result of drunkenness! These American incursions led to two significant events in the late 1800’s. They were the last great Indian battle in North America, and the creation of Canada’s mounted police force to reassert control of the border and quell the rising violence. First, the battle: By 1870, the Blackfoot had endured bouts of smallpox devastating their population. Seeing an opportunity, Cree forces and their allies invaded. But when the battle was fully engaged, the Cree realized the Blackfoot were armed with American repeating rifles from nearby Fort Whoop-Up, while the Cree had single shot muskets. The battle became a slaughter with as many as 300 to 400 invaders killed. Three years later, another violent incident perpetrated by American wolf hunters, or ‘wolfers’, known as the Cypress Hills Massacre encouraged the government in Ontario to send
FORT MACLEOD Pincher Creek
At first the natives were glad to see the North West Mounted Police, as they quickly put an end to both intertribal violence and the predations of the whiskey traders. But with the arrival of European ‘law and order,’ the Blackfoot tribes were unable to enforce their own justice, and soon metis and other native tribes were encroaching on traditional Blackfoot territory. Including, two years after the Mounties’ arrival, the escaping Sioux from the Battle of the Little Big Horn, known as Custer’s last stand, which happened in nearby Montana. Visitors today can get an idea of what a ‘Wal-Mart of 1870’ would have looked like with a visit to the reconstructed Fort Whoop-Up in Lethbridge, and of the life of the early Mounties through visits to Fort MacLeod, where they reenacts the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Musical Ride all summer, Fort Walsh in the Cypress Hills, or Fort Calgary. Oldfortstrail.com provides information on many of the southern fur-trading forts, and the RCMP outposts established to curtail their trade. By Allen R. Gibson
a force of men to establish law and order. The ‘Mounties’ did just that, starting in 1874. They built forts of their own – Fort Walsh near the Cypress Hills, Fort MacLeod near Lethbridge, and eventually Fort Calgary.
36 Medicine Hat 3 Lethbridge Taber FORT WHOOP-UP
Maple Creek 41
Havre FORT ASSINNIBOINE
FORT BENTON Great Falls
11 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
Small Town Rodeos
Photo Courtesy of Claresholm Local Press
Mark mid-May for the Stavely Indoor Pro Rodeo Dust off your cowboy boots and throw on your cowboy hat. If you are interested in a traditional western rodeo with not a bad seat in the house, plan to be in Stavely, AB in mid-May for Canada’s oldest indoor cowboy sporting event.
home of the Stavely rodeo during the 1983 and 1984 seasons as well. The indoor rodeo finally returned home to the new Stavely Arena for the 1985 event.
The Stavely Indoor Pro Rodeo, is expected to draw 4,000 visitors over its three evening run at the arena approaching the Mother’s Day weekend May 10 to 12, 2018. Stavely is located on Hwy 2, about 75 minutes south of Calgary.
The Stavely Indoor Pro Rodeo draws some 250 competitors from across Alberta entered in traditional rodeo events such as bareback riding, saddle bronc riding, tie down roping, steer wrestling, team roping, ladies barrel racing and of course bull riding. Vold Rodeo Co supplies the top quality rodeo stock.
“It was originally started as a fund raising event to help keep the local arena going,” says Kim Cochlan, current treasurer and past chairman of the Stavely Pro Rodeo Association. He’s been involved with the event for 45 years. “And it has been running continuously ever since,” he says.
Over the three evenings (events start at 7 pm), cowboys and cowgirls compete for $3,500 in prize money offered in each event. The winnings of each competitor add to their overall earnings as they go on to hopefully compete in the Canadian National Finals Rodeo and the U.S. National Finals Rodeo.
In fact, the first indoor rodeo in Canada (perhaps the world) was held in Stavely in 1929. With the Great Depression and WWII intervening, there was a long break in the schedule, before a committee re-launched the rodeo in the mid-1950s.
While a hardworking volunteer committee and the support of visitors to the event is significant, Cochlan also recognizes the dozens of sponsors whose ongoing support makes the rodeo at reality. “We wouldn’t be here without them,” he says.
Along with being a popular and entertaining sporting event, the rodeo has been an important fundraiser, says Cochlan. Two years after the rodeo started in 1956, the Stavely rink burned down, but was rebuilt in time to host the annual event the following year. Then misfortune struck again in 1982 with the arena burning down again just two weeks before the rodeo. That year with many long hours of volunteer help, the show did go on a few miles to the south at the Claresholm AgriPlex. Due to construction delays, Claresholm was the temporary
For the $25 admission fee for adults (children under 12 are free) everyone gets a great seat. “We welcome all visitors to come and enjoy rodeo at its finest,” says Cochlan. “Our venue affords everyone the opportunity to have an up close view of the action. In fact, with some seats you have to watch. You might be exposed to a little more than rodeo sawdust.” For more information visit stavelyprorodeo.com
12 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
By: Lee Hart
2018 Rodeo Schedule Rodeo
Date Town/City Website
Drayton Valley Pro Rodeo
Stavely Indoor Pro Rodeo
Innisfail Night at the Ranch Rodeo May 12
Little Britches Rodeo
Alder Flats Rodeo
Mayerthorpe Indoor Rodeo
Grande Prairie Stompede
May 31-June 3
Leduc Black Gold Rodeo
May 31-June 3
Rocky Pro Rodeo
Rocky Mtn House
Innisfail Pro Rodeo
Wainwright Pro Rodeo
Guy Weadick Days
Sundre Pro Rodeo
High River Rodeo
June 26-July 2
Airdrie Pro Rodeo
June 28-July 2
June 30-July 2
Buck Lake Stampede
The Dogpound Rodeo
Mary Reimer Memorial Rodeo
Bowden Pro Rodeo
Jasper Heritage Rodeo
Cardston Ranch Rodeo
Pincher Creek Pro Rodeo
Bar U Ranch
Cochrane Lions Rodeo
Canadian Finals Rodeo
Oct 30-Nov 4
Benalto Pro Rodeo
Old Time Ranch Rodeo Okotoks Pro Rodeo
13 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
gpstompede.com blackgoldrodeo.com rockyrodeo.com
raymond.ca benaltoagsociety.ca fcarodeo.com calgarystampede.com
rodeocanada.com jasperheritagerodeo.com rodeocanada.com pinchercreekprorodeo.com fcarodeo.com
Experience the Cowboy Trail
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!
Neil MacLaine President Cowboy Trail Tourism Association TheCowboyTrail.com Box 285 Bragg Creek, Alberta T0L 0K0 | 403-949-3329
14 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Experience the Cowboy Trail
Alberta’s History Wrangler & “Sidekick Maxito” 2018 Cowboy Trail & Beyond Tour
Catch The History Wrangler this summer on his 2018 Cowboy Trail & Beyond Tour, including his 10 Stop Canada Day Tour starting in Drayton Valley!! All the dates and times of the History Wrangler’s free performances can be found on Twitter: @HistoryWrangler @ AlbertaHistory
A little bit about the History Wrangler
Don’t miss The History’s Wrangler’s YaHoo Stampede Song! Music Video filmed at The Ranchman’s Cookhouse, featuring “The Outlaw Country Dancers”- Release date- 2 weeks before The 2018 Calgary Stampede!
Award Winning Historical Fiction Writer
The Historic Ranche at Fish Creek Provincial Park, The Home of Alberta’s History Wrangler Rob Lennard/The History Wrangler email@example.com | 403-607-5299
15 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
Historian, Director of Education & Outreach, The Ranche Regional Coordinator- The Calgary & Region History Fair Canada’s History Liaison, Calgary Region
Song Writing Specializing in History Themed Songs Musician/Performer FNMI Programming
HISTORICAL LEARNING CENTRE
Experience the Cowboy Trails 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.
16 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
NATIONAL Kicking Horse Pass
Panther River Red Deer River
AREA RECREATION Saskatchewan River Crossing
WILDLAND Cline River
North Saskatchewan River
Innisfail Glennifer Lake
Sun Child Indian Reserve
O’Chiese Indian Reserve
Red Deer River
Rocky Mountain House
20 Buck Lake Indian Reserve
21 53 Ponoka
13 Buck Lake
770 Drayton Valley Pembina River
North Saskatchewan River
Wabamun Indian Reserve
37 Lac Ste. Anne Isle Lake
15 Morinville Alaska
Rochfort Brock Bridge Lake
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.
17 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
For more information, check out ExperienceTheCowboyTrail.com
Bronze Statues by Studio West
Peigan Indian Reserve
WATERTON 5 LAKES NATIONAL Mountain View PARK 6
Blood Indian Reserve
Hillspring Cardston Twin Butte 800
to Medicine Hat
Eden Valley Indian Reserve
Priddis Millarville 549
Sarcee Indian Reserve
Stoney Indian Reserve
Stoney Indian Reserve
Kicking Horse Pass
Experience the Cowboy Trails
Complete our reader survey on pg 30 for a chance to win new boots!
Experience Cardston, Waterton & Pincher Creek
Courtesy of Travel Alberta
At the heart of Waterton Lakes National Park, the quaint town of Waterton is located 55 km southwest of Cardston and 57 km south of Pincher Creek. It’s the most southerly community on The Cowboy Trail.
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 region the same way.
Here, the grasslands of the Plains give way to mountain lakes and waterfalls to refresh your spirit. This may be the smallest of Canada’s national mountain parks, but many consider it to be the most stunning. Sit back, relax, and breathe in the fresh crisp alpine air.
The Blackfoot people consider Waterton a sacred place. Learn more at the Crandell Mountain Interpretive Theatre’s Native Storyteller program. Be sure to visit the Maskinonge Overlook Exhibit and discover the origins of the sacred Beaver Bundle. It contains the essence of life and opens in the spring.
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
The 2017 summer at Alpine Stables concluded with a lightning strike just west of the Park becoming the Kenow Fire and burning through much of Waterton Lakes National Park in September. The wildfire destroyed our barns, corrals, and home. Everything that wasn’t evacuated was lost including tack, feed, and nearly 50 years of memories for the Barrus and Watson families. All the horses and people remained safe. As a result of the terrible devastation we will only be able to operate at a very limited capacity for the 2018 year. This is due to the fire’s effect on so many trails as well as the lack of buildings and barns. Due to Parks Canada regulations, rebuilding is not likely to be underway until the fall of 2018. We are uncertain which trails will be safe and passable at this time, especially for longer day rides. We regret that we will not be able to offer overnight rides for the 2018 summer in Waterton due to trail closures. The Barrus and Watson families are grateful for all the support we have received during this incredibly sad time, and we look forward to riding with you again in the future. For the 2018 year we are asking to reserve ahead, as we may not be able to accommodate walk-ins or large groups.
18 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Experience Cardston, Waterton & Pincher Creek Waterton is a peaceful place that will remain in your heart forever. The native plants and flowers here are so numerous, the park is called the Wildflower Capital of Canada. Wildlife is so abundant here that it became the genesis of an annual fall festival, now known as the Waterton Wildlife Weekend.
May we suggest: - Chief Mountain Highway - scenic drive, Two Flags Lookout - Bison Paddock Overlook Hike - easy with good views - The Kootenai Brown Trail along the Entrance Road - Wishbone Trail - flat grassland hike - Shoreline Cruise
The 2017 Kenow Wildfire had an impact on the facilities in Waterton Lakes National Park. For example, the information centre was destroyed, so for 2018 Parks Canada will operate an alternate visitor centre. Red Rock Canyon, and most of the Red Rock Parkway was closed. The First Oil Well NHS was damaged and the Akamina Parkway has been closed.
Many visitors use Waterton as a base while touring through the region. There are several authentic western adventures here such as the Great Canadian Barn Dance, Remington Carriage Museum, the Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, Alpine Stables and the Pincher Creek Rodeo.
The good news is that almost everything was saved in town! Waterton is still open for business, and a terrific experience.
For more Information visit mywaterton.ca, pinchercreek.ca, and cardston.ca
Taste of Waterton May 25 - June 3.
Canada Day July 1 Celebrate Canada’s birthday in Waterton!
Pat’s Annual “Show ‘n’ Shine” August 29
Waterton Wildflower Festival June 14 - June 19 watertonwildflowers.com
Blackfoot Arts and Heritage Festival July 23 - July 25 At the Waterton Community Centre
Waterton Wildlife Weekend September 13 - September 16 watertonwildlife.com
Photo by Jarrod Lopiccolo
re u t n e v d A t x e N r Find You ta er
In Waterton, Alb
Crandell Mountain Lodge
Pearls Cafe and Pizza of Waterton
Crandell Mountain Lodge offers the charm of a B&B with the comfort of a lodge. crandellmountainlodge.com 1-866-859-2288
Two delicious restaurants under one roof! pearlscafe.ca | pizzaofwaterton.com (403) 859-2660
An 80 suite, full service hotel featuring the onsite Vimy’s Lounge & Grill restaurant. watertonlakeslodge.com 1-888-985-6343
Offering a wide variety of room types. aspenvillageinn.com 1-888-859-8669
Waterton Lakes Lodge Resort
LOUNGE & GRILL
PIZZA OF WATERTON
19 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
Experience the Castle Provincial Parks
Photo Courtesy of Mountain Drift Photography
Photo Courtesy of Alberta Parks
Within the past year we have been lucky to see the creation of two new provincial parks in Alberta: Castle Provincial Park and Castle Wildland Provincial Park. These parks are located in southern Alberta, south of Hwy 3 and the Crowsnest Pass with one of the easier access points past the community of Beaver Mines. Important and fragile ecosystems exist in this region, and the new park status can help provide safe areas for wildlife, plant species, and people wishing to quietly enjoy another protected mountain landscape within our province. My connection to the Castle has been odd, to be honest. I have known of the region for many years; the amazing scenery, the unique diversity of animal and plant species within the area, discussions within surrounding communities over protection status, and how much of a gem this part of Alberta happens to be. Yet with knowing about the Castle and being involved in conversations over its protection, I had never been there until somewhat recently. I wish that hadn’t been the case. Backpacking, hiking and travelling through the Castle in the few times I have done so, keeps me wanting to come back. Yes, it is just a bunch of mountains. Yes, Kananaskis or Banff also provide amazing areas for outdoor activities. But this area seems different. For now, before tourism hits here too hard, the Castle is authentic. These new parks are rustic with no visitor or information centres yet, and less campsites (compared to Kananaskis). With that said, this is all beginning to change. Since creating these parks in 2017, the Alberta Government has been hard at work. Picnic tables, expanding a current day
use area and refurbishing 184 campsites have kept parks staff very busy this last year. The Castle will soon be an established area for that 5-day backpack trip you have been planning. Thinking about camping? Beaver Mines Lake, Castle Falls, Castle River Bridge and Lynx Creek Campgrounds along with 9 roadside camping areas offer many options to stay overnight for a small fee. Obviously, the Castle is a region in transition. One of the more challenging issues with the creation of these parks relates to Off-Highway Vehicles (OHV’s). When the parks were created there was, and still is at time of writing, a plan to phase out these vehicles within 2 years. Afterwards, it should ideally be free of any motorized usage. But if you are heading out soon, you may be sharing trails with these folks. This region has an established following of people using OHV’s; if any transition has been a hard, it has been phasing out these vehicles in areas requiring environmental protection. Everyone deserves the ability to fully enjoy their chosen activity, however, protecting and preserving sensitive areas benefits all in the long term. Here’s hoping we can see established trails and areas for motorized recreation near the parks in the future, so all can enjoy their chosen activities. The Castle Provincial Parks have a very important role in helping us better understand and implement conservation strategies. Connecting to Waterton Lakes National Park and the Flathead River Valley in British Columbia, this greater Castle Parks region creates a large wildlife corridor where animals can move about with little human disturbance; and undisturbed wilderness only helps our endangered species.
20 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Experience the Castle Provincial Parks Western Slope Cut-Throat Trout, Wolverines, Grizzly Bears, and over 200 rare plant and animal species within our province will all benefit from the Castle Parks.
fragile mountain landscapes. Much of this area relies on tourism and people partaking in outdoor activities for their economy. I encourage you to go and enjoy these parks â€“ just make sure that you leave them better than you found them. We are blessed to have such breathtaking protected landscapes in our province, and the Castle region is a welcome addition. By: Justin Howse
Perhaps most importantly, after the impact of the recent fires to Waterton Lakes National Park, parts of Castle, Banff National Park and many areas of British Columbia and Montana, we have a responsibility to care for our 40
es wsn CroLake
Blairmore Frank Ri ve Slide r Belleview
AL BE RT A BR CO IT LU ISH MB IA
Lundbreck Lundbreck Falls Provincial Recreation Area
Old Man Dam Provincial
e stl Ca
CASTLE Carb WILDLIFE PROVINCIAL PARK
Cr ee k
CASTLE PROVINCIAL PARK
Beauvais Lake Provincial Park
Beaver Mines Lake
Clares holm 2
A 507 774 Castle Provincial Park and Wildland Provincial Park
AL BE RT A BR CO IT LU IS MB H IA
Pincher Creek 6
CASTLE WILDLIFE PROVINCIAL PARK
CASTLE MOUNTAIN RESORT INC.
WEST CASTLE WETLANDS ECOLOGICAL RESERVE
p ko ion Sp row Yar
WATERTON 6 LAKES N.P.
Campground Equestrian Fishing Group Use Campground Hiking OHV Staging Area/Parking Parking Picnic Shelter Trails
CANADA UNITED STATES
21 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
WATERTON LAKES NATIONAL PARK Waterton Lakes
Experience the Bar U Ranch & Longview
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! 148 Morrison Road (Hwy 22 - The Cowboy Trail) Longview, Alberta
The Bar U 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, 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. Parks Canada has operated the site since 1991. They are in the process of restoring many of the historic buildings on the ranch. A visitor orientation centre and a living history program interprets a time when the West was young. Open 10am - 5pm, daily from May 14 – Sept. 30, 2018. Enjoy an authentic ranch house meal. Pick up quality western gifts for your buckaroo! Speaking of gifts and grits, you’ll find lots of both just 13 km north of the Bar U, at Longview. This quaint little western community may have a population of only 307 residents, but here you will find two amazing art galleries, one of which is also a museum. And you’ll be pleasantly surprised by both the number of restaurants here as well as the quality of the food.
Home Town Heroes Weekend June 16-17, 2018 This special event commemorates individuals from the area who have served our great nation.
The Little New York Bistro serves up superb Mediterranean food, and the Longview Steak House gets rave reviews. But don’t even think of leaving before stocking up on some world-famous jerky!
Old Time Ranch Rodeo Sunday, August 19, 2018 From wild cow milking, to team doctoring. come and enjoy the entire day as teams of working cowboys compete for bragging rights and trophy buckles!
friendsofthebaru.ca 22 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
A Peek At the History of The OH Ranch Branding at the OH Ranch corrals, near High River, Alberta, 1892. Courtesy of the Glenbow Museum (na-466-9)
On January 29, 1880, the first cattle brand was registered in what is now Alberta, by none other than Sam Steele, who is arguably Canada’s most famous member of the North West Mounted Police (NWMP), and his partner Percy Neale in historic Fort Macleod. The brand they chose was “71”. Over the years there have been countless brands registered a nd sold by Alberta ranchers. One of the most historic brands belongs to the OH Ranch, now owned and operated by the Calgary Stampede Foundation to continue their preservation of its environmental and cultural heritage values. The historic roots of the OH Ranch and brand date back to 1881 but the brand was not registered until 1883, meaning the founders were ranching illegally for a couple of years. The OH stands for the first two initials of Orville Hawkins Smith, one of two ranchers who registered the brand. Buffalo hunter Lafayette French was Smith’s partner. Only two years later
Frederick Ings from Prince Edward Island bought all 300 head of OH cattle. Then when his brother James joined him in 1883, they renamed the ranch to The Rio Alto (Spanish for ‘high river’) as a tribute to the time the brothers spent in Spain. The NWMP established a station on the ranch, which was in operation until 1900. The original cabin burned in 1961 but a recreation was erected. The ranch was sold to a New York company during WW1 and exchanged hands again in 1918 when it was purchased by “The Cattle King”, Senator Patrick Burns. Burns controlled enough land at one time that you could ride on horseback from Calgary to the U.S. border without leaving his property! The Burns Estate sold the property in 1950 to Bill Ardern and C.W. “Kink” Roenish. They changed the name of the ranch to the OH Ranch and hired renowned cowman Bert Sheppard
to manage it. In 1957, Sheppard and Ardern’s son-in-law A.D. Kingsford became full partners. The OH was sold to Daryl “Doc” Seaman, one of Alberta’s most generous philanthropists, in 1987. The Department of National Defence was planning to buy it for use as an artillery range. In 2008 a portion of the ranch, originally grazing leases, was set aside as the OH Ranch Heritage Rangelands. The very next year a conservation easement was placed on the ranch’s private land. Seaman owned the ranch until his death in 2009. Doc’s many contributions included minor hockey support, help to build the Olympic Saddledome, and donated $117 million to the Calgary upon his passing - one of the largest civic donations in Canadian history. Doc also co-owned the Calgary Flames.
Frederick Ings, 1920. Courtesy of the Glenbow Museum (nb-9-54)
Bill Siebens, a Calgary oil tycoon, purchased the historic OH Ranch and brand from Doc’s estate and a short time later he also donated the brand and the almost 8,000-acre southern portion of the ranch to the Calgary Stampede Foundation. At the time this gift was valued at $11 million. There are many stories associated with the OH Ranch but none perhaps as interesting as the time Harry Longabaugh, aka “The Sundance Kid”, the infamous train robber partner of Butch Cassidy (real name Robert Leroy Parker). Harry saved the life of Fred Ings during a bad snow storm in 1890. “The Sundance Kid” spent 2 years working at the nearby Bar U Ranch south of Longview. Longabaugh and Cassidy were reported killed in a shootout in November 1908 in Bolivia. By Rob Lennard
Orville Hawkins Smith. Courtesy of the Glenbow Museum (na-533-1)
Most Historic Brand To commemorate Canada’s 150th Birthday, a national cattle brand contest took place in the spring of 2017. The winning entry was submitted by George Edworthy, who’s Quarter-Circle L brand, was originally owned by Sam Livingston. Sam raised cattle in the late 1800’s on the property in Calgary today where Heritage Park and the Glenmore reservoir reside. The brand was passed to George’s father in the 1940’s who raised cattle just west of Calgary on the Shaganappi Ranch until 1963 when the City of Calgary purchased the Ranch and turned it into Edworthy Park for all citizens to enjoy.
Experience Diamond Valley
Bluerock Gallery Photo Courtesy of Bluerock Gallery
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. They are surrounded by recreational opportunities and wonderful hosts to weary travellers and adventurers of all ages.
When you show this ad in store
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. Black Diamond is just 35 minutes southwest of Calgary and 15 minutes north of Longview at the junction of Hwys 7 & 22. Turner Valley is only 5 minutes west of Black Diamond. The pace here is calmer than the big city. The local Chamber of Commerce represents both communities and goes by the name of Diamond Valley, combining the names of the towns. That’s how we like to refer to them, because “Diamond” may refer to the many wonderful gems you’ll find here: artwork, hand-crafted home decor, specialty clothing and jewelry, gifts, local food producers and a variety of great restaurants.
luxurious silk & wool carpets, teak root and hardwood furniture, hand carved sculptures and many other forms of captivating artifacts from around the globe. Open Daily: 10:00am to 5:30pm 134 Centre Ave, Black Diamond 403-933-5356 | blackdiamondgallery.com
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, an authentic soda fountain and 50s diner. The ambience will stir the heart of any senior and everyone enjoys a handmade hamburger and home-cut fries. You may not find a better milkshake!
26 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Experience Diamond Valley On your way out, be sure to swing into the Black Diamond Bakery, right next door, for some Cowboy Trail sourdough bread. It goes great with their award-winning chili. Check out the motorcycles parked just outside the historic Black Diamond Hotel. Riders aren’t having a convention! They’re here for a pint and a hearty meal. The Stop, located just next door, has a rustic feel with a large patio. They make a great espresso and a nice variety of gluten-free sweets.
Both the Chuckwagon Cafe and the Country Store Diner are located in Turner Valley. The Chuckwagon Cafe has been awarded Calgary’s Best Burger twice. Their Flat Iron Eggs Benedict was featured on “You Gotta Eat Here”. This cafe is a very popular spot for breakfast and lunch. American tourists will receive a fair exchange rate on your US dollars, too.
Here is one of those terrific hidden gems along the Cowboy Trail.
Curtis Dixon converted an old pizza place into a full diner. You’ll still get a terrific pizza at the Country Store Diner, but don’t hesitate to try their pasta, poutine, and wings! On a warm summer evening, sit on their patio. Open late!
Look for the little red barn at the 4-way stop in Turner Valley.
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.
Open at 8 AM daily. Ph: 403-933-0003
The Bluerock Gallery specializes 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 Firebrand Glass Studios, the Leighton Art Centre and Kristoferson Studio to establish The Most Beautiful Art Tour in Alberta. 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
Events In Diamond Valley June 4 Turner Valley’s Discovery Days & Black Diamond Parade July 1 Canada Day Celebrations July 29 Marv’s 11th Annual Rock & Roll Classic Show N Shine December Diamond Valley Christmas Market and Light-Up Chuckwagon Cafe
27 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
Saddle Up For a Great Time!
Image Courtesy of Anchor D
Image Courtesy of Trail Riders of the Canadian Rockies
Image Courtesy of Andrew Penner
The trail rider guides, or outfitters, trace their origins back to the
guide. In some ways they wrangle both horses and people and
old authentic western cowboy traditions. Back then, cowboys
focus on helping riders realize a once in a lifetime “bucket list”
would saddle up for weeks at a time rounding up cattle in the
adventure. This is no small feat.
open lands of the vast wilderness of the Rockies. Today we can conjure up iconic images of free-spirited riders, crude camp-
Southern Alberta is blessed with some of the best outfitters
sites, and guitar playing around a campfire with horses quietly
in the country, catering to the inner cowboys and cowgirls in
listening in the background.
all of us. Their offering includes a wide variety of services from single riding lessons, to day-rides, stay on the ranch vacation
Trail guides today have a gentler lifestyle, but their job is no less
experiences, to multi-day backcountry adventures. Many of
challenging. Calm, resourceful and with witty self-deprecating
the outfitters are located on the eastern slopes of the Rockies
humour, they have an extraordinary skill set that comes from
a short drive from Calgary. Their backdrops are outstanding
years of training come the rain, snow or shine. First, they are
vistas of rolling lands, intense blue sky, and snowy peaks; the
wranglers, meaning that they are expert horse handlers. Then,
stuff movies are made of. The outfitters’ no-nonsense approach
as accomplished riders, they will have spent an inordinate
means they tailor their services to meet your individual needs
amount of time outdoors becoming intimate with the land,
or that of your group whenever they can. Just give them a call.
the wildlife, and the backcountry lifestyle, caring for horse and campers alike. Add to it the aptitude to host clients from all
While hiking the foothills of the Canadian Rockies is an amazing
walks of life and skill levels, and you have yourself a trail rider
experience, doing it on horseback allows you to see, smell and
28 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Saddle Up For a Great Time! feel the land differently than is possible on foot. The best part is
At Anchor D Guiding & Outfitting, Dewy Matthews loves his
that pretty much everyone can ride a horse and experience the
well-trained horses, and it shows. They also care for each of their
great mountain views.
guests, and many come back for the experience. Anchor D Guiding is a first class company offering a full range of riding
Trail riding is a transformative experience, and Neil MacLaine
opportunities. They are a short drive from Calgary about 15 km
understands this well. The owner-operator of Moose Mountain
west of Turner Valley. anchord.com | 1-877-933-2867
Horseback Adventures since 1991, Neil has credentials capable of instilling confidence in the wariest of newbie rider. Besides
The Trail Riders of the Canadian Rockies (TRCR) is a not-for-profit
being the president of the Cowboy Trail Tourism Association
society with a rich 95 year history of trail riding. Their mission is
since 2009, he is a retired Lieutenant Colonel commanding
to providing first-class all-inclusive riding packages. They do this
the King’s Own Calgary Regiment, a reserve reconnaissance
in collaboration with local outfitters. TRCR caters to the novice
unit. Today Moose Mountain Horseback Adventure is, in Neil’s
and the expert alike. Check out what’s new for 2018 and book
words, “a hobby that went hopelessly out of control.” He and
your saddle trip. trailridevacations.com | 1-844-560-5522
his team are “Dedicated to providing outstanding horseback adventures in harmony with nature,” while leaving the smallest
Elk Ridge Trail Rides is located next to Waterton Lakes National
possible footprint on the wilderness. The ranch is located close
Park, where mountains rise out of the prairie fields and foot-
to Calgary near the hamlet of Bragg Creek. Moose Mountain
hills providing dramatic landscapes best enjoyed by horseback.
Horseback Adventures and all their horses offer a full range of
Take half a day or a full day and join one of their unforgettable
customized riding opportunities.
trail ride experiences. elkridgetrailrides.com | 403-715-4156
packtrips.ca | 1-866-513-7433
By: Renée Delorme
Trailrider’s Prayer (by Cowboy Poet, Margo Imes) Lord, bless my horse and me today, Keep us safe on the trail I pray; May no hillside be too steep, No water crossing be too deep, And if on wooded trails, we go, Please, may no branches hang too low.
29 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
WIN: A Gift Certificate for a NEW Pair of Cowboy Boots courtesy of Alberta Boots, Calgary ($300) www.albertaboot.com You are reading the sixth edition of Experience The Cowboy Trails. Weâ€™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?
What would you like to see us add to the 2019 edition?
What were your expectations?
Did we deliver?
What did you like best?
How many adults are travelling in your party? How many children are travelling with you? Age Range Are you travelling in the region now?
If yes, what were the highlights of your visit:
How are you travelling? Car / Truck
Where are staying? Family/friends
Will you and your friends re-use this guide in the future? If not, do you plan to within the next 12 months?
Have you accessed the guide online?
Email or Address:
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 October 31, 2018. Please mail this survey to: CMI Publishing, 116 Parkview Way SE, Calgary, Alberta, T2J 4M8 If you prefer to keep your copy of this guide intact, please forward your comments to CowboySurvey@CMIpublishing.ca
30 | ExperienceTheCowboyTrail.com
18 Marv’s Classic Soda
4 Banff Trail Riders
Shop and Diner
Marv’s is one of those places you expect to see in New Jersey or on Route 66 but it’s right here in Alberta on highway 22. An icon on main street Black Diamond since the turn of the century. Features a great handmade burger, fresh cut fries, ice cream and vintage soda fountain with over 150 varieties of vintage glass bottled soda flavours. Open year around. Summer hours: Tues & Wed 11-5 pm. Thurs to Mon 11-9 pm. Open holidays 11-5 pm.
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.
“Relive the 1950s experience!” 8
27 Sundre Pioneer Museum
Featuring the Chester Mjolsness World of Wildlife Exhibit
Travel back in time! See how the pioneers lived and learn about the culture and history of the Sundre community. Tour our village which sits on 4 acres of land housing 8 heritage buildings. Wander around our pioneer gallery inside the reception centre and take a walk on the wild side in our Chester Mjolsness World of Wildlife Exhibit which displays 170 animal mounts from around the world. We invite you to the beautiful historic downtown Riverside District in the heart of Sundre where we celebrate “The Way We Were”.
7.375 x 4.50 – cowboy trail 12
• June 6-10: Pro Rodeo, Pony Chuckwagons, Parade, Midway • June 28-Aug. 30: Marketplace on Main Every Thursday Evening • July 1: Canada Day Celebration • July 25: Rocky Mountain House Airshow • Aug. 16-19: Battle of the Rockies WPCA Chuckwagon Races • Aug. 26: Lions Demolition Derby
31 | ExperienceTheCowboyTrail.com
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?
Partners on The Cowboy Trail
Rochfort Bridge Sangudo
32 r ive
22 Pe m bina R i
Bra zea u
Buck Lake Buck Lake IR
r ive ckstone R Bla
Sas n katchewa
Lac Ste. Anne
Sun Child IR
Gull Lake Nordegg
ROCKY MOUNTAIN HOUSE
SUNDRE 31 27
TA ER LB C B
KANANASKIS COUNTRY Highwood Pass
BRAGG CREEK 8
22 Riv er
R iv er
for more exciting activities!
13 Peigan IR
v er Ri
PORCUPINE ROCKY Oldman
Highlights of The Cowboy Trail Camping First Nations National Park Forestry Reserve
Eden Valley IR
A RT ALBE
2 HIGH RIVER LONGVIEW 540
18 7 30 5 BLACK DIAMOND
22X Bow R iver
TURNER VALLEY 546 3
“Gateway to the Cowboy Trail”
Calgary International Airport
14 11 10
1 25 7 1A
The Cowboy Trail Alberta, Canada
r Riv er
Stoney IR Waiparous
Kanana s ki
Kicking Horse Pass
ver r Ri
iv ed Deer R
Glennifer Lake Innisfail
AREA Bow Pass
er ter Riv
R i ve r
Saskatchewan River Crossing
wa ar Cle
PINCHER CREEK 507
TWIN BUTTE WATERTON LAKES NATIONAL PARK
r Cline Rive
eer R ive
A Little Taste of Country Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association Anchor D Ranch Banff Trail Riders Bluerock Gallery Boundary Ranch Bow Rivers Edge Campground 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 Lucasia Ranch Marv’s Classic Soda Shop McKenzie’s Trails West Moose Mountain Horseback Adventures Outpost at Warden’s Rock Red Lodge Guest Ranch Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site Sierra West Ranch Vacations Studio West Sundance Lodges Sundre and District Historical Society Sunset Guiding & Outfitting Town of Mayerthorpe Town of Okotoks Town of Sundre The Trail Riders of the Canadian Rockies Village of Cremona
5 2 89
32 | Enter our Photo Contest & Reader Survey
Header 20 Moose Mountain Horseback Adventures
5 Bluerock Gallery 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!
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.
2 Alberta Cowboy Poetry Association Music and stories of the West. September 28-30, 2018. Held at the High River Full Gospel Church, 1802-9 Ave SE, High River. Weekend Pass: $40. Friday, day only: Free. Friday evening: $20. Saturday, day only: Free. Saturday Evening: $20. Saturday Beef Supper: $20. 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.
32 The Trail Riders of the
1 A Little Taste of Country
Since 2009, A Little Taste of Country has brought in a wide range of fine quality Canadian-made artisan food products including handmade soups, Alberta honeys, craft mustards, jams and marmalades, maple syrup, bbq rubs and sauces, pickles and much more. We are excited to be opening on First Street in beautiful downtown Cochrane.
Explore the Rocky Mountains of Alberta on an outdoor adventure that our previous riders have said will be “the best vacation of your life.”TM Experience your inner cowboy/cowgirl with sure-footed horses, professional guides, hot 4-course meals, teepee/tent accommodations, and a hot shower! Enjoy live entertainment nightly, as we celebrate 95 years of history and western cowboy culture. Beginners welcome!
6 Boundary Ranch
26 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.
33 | ExperienceTheCowboyTrail.com
Adventures abound at Boundary Ranch; enjoy everything from a barbecue lunch at Rick’s Steakhouse to overnight trips in cozy backcountry camps. Trail rides range from one hour up to six days into remote areas of the high-country. For group entertainment; a private rodeo, a down n’ dirty gunfight, western-themed corporate team building, meals and much more! Boundary Ranch is located half way between Calgary and Banff, just 20 minutes south on Hwy#40.
E M O H . . . N I A T N ROCKY MOU
Immerse yourself in stories of the fur trade, Indigenous Peoples and legendary explorers. Just off the Cowboy Trail and David Thompson Highway on Hwy 6A. Free Entry for youth 17 and under. Camp in a tipi, trapperâ€™s tent or trapline cabin. 2018 Camping reservations now open. In proud collaboration with MĂŠtis Local 845 and the Confluence Heritage Society.
RMH NHS_Cowboy Trail_Final Red Deer Insiders_2018.indd 1
34 | ExperienceTheCowboyTrail.com
13/02/2018 10:54:50 AM
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 18th 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 15, 16 & 17, 2018
Live Western Music & Poetry
Stavely, Alberta, in the arena
FRIDAY & SATURDAY 10 AM TO 9 PM Followed by Campﬁre Jam Sessions
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
35 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
The Mead ‘Boom’ Hits Alberta
Owl Grey Meadery Photo Courtesy of Walter Schwengle
Photo Courtesy of Chinook Arch Meadery
Owl Grey Meadery Photo Courtesy of Walter Schwengle
Albertans are falling in love with meads. Some attribute this to the influence of popular TV series like Vikings and Game of Thrones. Others view the progression of our passion for craft beers and spirits to “Made in Alberta” movement. Certainly changing provincial regulations created a more supportive environment for this cottage industry. Whatever the reasons, mead production is booming, and we can all be proud of it.
First coined by Cistercian monks in Burgundy, France back in the 11th centuries, “terroir” is how a region’s climate, soil, terrain and even the local culture, affects a wine’s taste (or any local craft products for that matter). As such, a pinot noir in France will be distinctly different from a pinot noir in Canada because the weather, the soil, the geography and winemaking techniques are different.
Mead, simply put, is the alcoholised beverage resulting from the fermentation of honey diluted with water. Of course, this recipe is only the beginning. Like bread (flour, yeast, water), mead is more than the sum of its parts. The type of honey and its treatment along with the addition of fruits, herbs, grape wines, perhaps some aging in wood or carbonation contribute to the creation of styles limited only by knowledge, creativity, and talent. And Alberta has all of this and more.
Many mead producers believe in Alberta terroirs, and the uniqueness each location brings. Prairie honey is different than alpine honey. Similarly, the native wild berries and herbs infused in meads contribute to the uniqueness of the wines.
According to Agriculture Canada, Alberta produces 45% of Canadian honey. It is of high quality and comes from clovers, canola flowers and wildflowers. The seasons, the regions and the diversity of flora also contribute to subtle differences in flavours and aromas. Just like grapes are to wine, honey is to mead, which brings in an exciting notion of “terroir”.
The Alberta mead industry is still in its infancy but second to none. Old World or New World styles, sweet or dry, high or low in alcohol, flavoured with local berries or herbs – Alberta meads are delicious, approachable, easy to pair with food and the current and potential diversity in styles is mind-boggling. Japan now imports Spirit Hill’s wines, which are appreciated for their quality and purity. The Fallentimber Meadery cannot produce enough of its “Meadjito” – a twist on the traditional mojito. Both meaderies are in the midst of large expansions.
36 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
The Mead ‘Boom’ Hits Alberta Chinook Arch, Alberta’s first meadery, regularly earns national and international accolades including the 2018 Silver for their Ginger Bochet at the Mazer Cup International. Notable is their leadership in improving production conditions. The Grey Owl Meadery has promising prospects. Their mead master recently completed the “Advance Mead Making” from the Davis campus, University of California, a world-leading viticulture research centre. Grey Owl recently earned medals for their Apple Honey Wine (Cyser) and their three-year-old Tamarack Jack is carving a niche for its original approach to beer-like meads. This summer, seek out the meaderies along Hwy 22. Check out their websites for visiting hours. They all have tasting rooms, are eager to show you around and offer you meads. What’s more, they have boutiques with excellent selections of honey and related products. If you can’t make a day trip, then visit your local wine stores or local farmer’s markets. Be part of the Alberta Renaissance. Discover the buzzing spirit that inhabits the soul of our modern day mead pioneers. By: Renée Delorme
Try a a few meaderies along the Cowboy Trails Meaderies
Producers Top Pick
Chinook Arch Meadery Okotoks, Ab chinookhoney.com
King Arthur’s: Crisp and dry with a hint of honey
Spirit Hills Winery Millarville, Ab spirithillswinery.com
YeeHaa!: “Cowboy Sangria” - fun and fruity. Lends itself to delicious mix drinks or on its own over ice
Fallentimber Meadery Water Valley, Ab fallentimbermeadery.ca
Meadjito: Session mead. Fresh, clean, citrusy, some sweetness and minty.
Tamarack Jacks Caroline, Ab tamarackjacks.com
Sawyer Mead: Beer like, dry and refreshing
Grey Owl Meadery Alder Flats, Ab greyowlmeadery.com
Bochet: Off-dry, blend of raw and caramelized honey. French Oak, Caramel, Vanilla and Peaches 37 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
Come Enjoy our Meadery Tours & Tastings
The Mead ‘Boom’ Hits Alberta Photos Courtesy of Spirit Hills Winery
The Spirit Hills Winery produces internationally recognized award-winning ‘Foothills’ wines - thanks to the bees! Just a little way southwest of Millarville and west of Hwy 22 resides a unique winery that is garnering international attention for its flavourful creations. What makes Spirit Hills so different is they create award-winning wines without grapes, mostly anyway. The sugar base for fermentation is honey and the rest of the recipe includes local fruits and flowers. And just in case extraordinary taste wasn’t enough, lab tests show their wines are super healthy – jam-packed with antioxidants. Spirit Hills opened their doors in late 2012. The winery is owned and operated by the Bonjean family who have deep roots in generations of French winemakers with vineyards in the Auvergne region of France. The bees supplying the honey for their wines do so from foothills wild flowers. They use an ancient honey wine fermentation technique and integrate rose hips, black currants and Saskatoons in the process. Oak barrels are used to age and add flavour to the final product. The list of wines Spirit Hills produce is impressive. Saskwatch is a well-structured dry red wine that has garnered several awards including Best of Class 2016 & 2017 Alberta Beverage
Awards. Dande, their dandelion honey wine, is another award winner and a medium-dry wine best served cold. The coral rose coloured Wild Rosy is made, as you might guess, with wild roses, and won silver in 2017 in the All Canadian Wine competition. There’s a cowboy’s sangria named YeeHaa!, to be served over ice, and a traditional European pre-mulled winter wine dubbed Bonfire, which is served every year at the Lake Louise and Banff, Sunshine ski hills. Their creations are relatively healthy. One 5 oz glass of Dande contains as many antioxidants as 120 glasses of red wine. One glass of Saskwatch has as much antioxidant as 100 glasses; and, a single glass of Wild Rosy as much as 90 glasses of red wine. Spirit Hills wines are sold in over 300 liquor stores in Alberta and Saskatchewan, 5 farmers markets and in restaurants and bars. And about a year ago, they began exporting their wines to Japan where they are available in luxury stores, superior restaurants and exclusive wine bars. Book your winery tour and tasting at Spirithillswinery.com. Their website provides specific locales where you can pick up a bottle along with more in-depth info on their wines, process, and cocktails. By: Larry Thomas
38 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Experience Our Farmersâ€™ Markets Pincher Creek - Memorial Arena Fridays; June to October
Crossfield - Banta Park Thursdays; June to September
Clearwater Market - RMH Rec Centre Thursdays; May to October
Claresholm - Claresholm Arena Wednesdays; July to September
Carstairs - Curling Rink Tuesdays; June to August
Caroline - Kurt Browning Arena Fridays; May to September
Millarville - Millarville Fair Grounds Saturdays; June to October
Bergen - Community Hall Saturdays; June to September
Spruce View - Spruce View Hall Mondays; May to September
Okotoks - two miles north Fridays; June to September
Bentley - Curling Rink Saturdays; May to September
Drayton Valley - Mackenzie Centre Wednesdays
Calgary - Blackfoot near Heritage Friday - Sunday; Year Round
Sundre - Curling Rink Fridays; May to September
Edson - Friendship Centre Fridays; April to December
Cochrane Ranche Historic Site Saturdays; June to October
Rimbey - Pask-a-Poo Park Saturdays; May to October
Evansburg; Tipple Park Museum Saturdays; May to September
Banff - Bear Street Wednesdays; June to October
Rocky Mountain House - Museum Saturdays; Year Round
Hinton - Switzer Drive Thursdays; March to December
For further information on these and other markets visit albertamarkets.com
Visit Spirit Hills, Alberta's award winning honey winery.
Book your tour and tasting online: www.spirithillswinery.com firstname.lastname@example.org (403) 933 3913
39 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
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.
and associated Yoga Studio, is your place for connection and respite, away from a hurried life. Take some 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’s mission,
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, jewelry 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
40 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Experience Bragg Creek 3 40
22 0 20 0
ad Brack en Ro
TSUU T’INA NATION RESERVE
East Park Place
Ro Boyce Ranch
To Hwy 1 Cochrane Calgary Banff Canmore
. e Ave Whit all Dr.
October 5 - November 4 Scarecrow Festival
December 1, 2 & 8, 9 Spirit of Christmas
Bragg Creek Provincial Park The Highlands
Town Site of Redwood Meadows
Redwood Meadows Golf Club
Pine Ave. Spruce Av e.
September 22 & 23 Heritage Festival
November 17 & 18 Artisans Christmas Sale
West Bragg Creek
August 25 Moose Mountain Trail Races
Elk Valley Dr.
July 27 - 29 Tsuu T’ina Pow Wow and Rodeo
For Bragg Creek also see pg 2 & 63 nsid Bur
July 21 & 22 Bragg Creek Days & Ride for Sight
July 1 Canada Day Celebrations
Wintergreen Golf Resort
June 21 Aboriginal Awareness Day
Wintergreen Woods Estate
Events In Bragg Creek
Allen Bill Pond
Bar Kay Cee
McLean Creek Recreation Area
To Hwy 2 South Calgary Priddis
River Cove Campground Rusticana
Paddy’s Flats Aspen Creek
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, jewelry, 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 flavors 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 44th annual Tsuu T’ina Pow Wow and Rodeo will be held from July 27-29. 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.
41 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
How to Buy the Perfect Pair of Cowboy Boots
Carl Ceder (our 2014 winner) Modelling his New Boots
Cowtown prides itself on everything western. Come Stampede time, it is really easy to see how Calgary earned its nickname. Professionals ditch their suits for plaid shirts, Wrangler jeans, and cowboy boots. Whether you are wearing them on the farm, or two-stepping at your local watering hole, the Alberta Boot Company in Calgary is a go to for high-quality western boots. Clement Gerwing founded the company in 1978. This year marks the Alberta Boot Co.’s 40th anniversary. At the time, he owned a wholesale footwear company and noticed a big demand for western boots, but there was a lack of quality in the ones he imported; so he decided to make his own. “He assembled the machines, the people, and the materials to make a boot he was proud to put his stamp on,” says his grandson and current company president, Ben Gerwing. “Everything is made right here. It’s pretty hard to find a boot made in Canada. One of Calgary’s identities was western hospitality. My grandfather was happy to leave his mark.” Through the years, the company outfitted our iconic RCMP, movie stars, and even royalty. Most importantly, they provide top-end cowboy boots to everyday Calgarians.
Mary Grace With Ben Gerwing at Alberta Boot Oct 2017
Picking the right pair of cowboy boots is essential because a good quality boot can last a long time. With proper care, you expect your boots to last anywhere from 10 to 20 years. “For an oil leather finish, we recommend a mink oil cream, which is waterproof and will protect. For regular leather, use a mix of all protector and shoe cream,” says Gerwing. No need for a whole lot of upkeep to wear them for many years, he adds. And when they finally succumb to the wear just take them back for a freshening. “We can resole them several times, as they are designed to be resoled and worked on again. In our factory, you’ll see new and old boots on the assembly line.” “Some of the boot moulds are the same used 40 years ago when we first opened our doors.” One of their mottos remains the same - “We want a boot that looks good now and 10 years from now,” says Gerwing. The cowboy boot is timeless, which makes it hard to go wrong when investing in a good pair. So now you know the inside scoop on buying good cowboy boots, head on out and get a pair for this year’s Stampede. Just make sure you break them in! By Holly Heuver
42 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
How to Buy the Perfect Pair of Cowboy Boots As a third-generation expert, Gerwing shares his best tips and tricks to know before selecting a new pair of cowboy boots:
Make sure you get properly fit. Unlike regular shoes, cowboy boots come in a variety of widths. Since there are no laces, the width is the most important aspect to tailor, not the length or the height. You want to ensure it fits snug as you pull them on. If it comes on too easy, they are too loose. “We’ll look at both the width and the length and get you professionally fit.”
2 Go for the boot that first attracts you. A dark brown
or black boot is best. These are the easiest colours to match with clothing and guarantees versatility. “Folks buy them as a souvenir and once they wear them and see the comfort, they find excuses to wear them.” Once you have your everyday boot size, then you can experiment with colour and design.
3 Look for an all-leather boot. They provide comfort
and quality. “Our full leather lining, insole, and outsole will mold to your foot and last a really long time. People have them for many years and won’t want to let them go because they’re so comfortable.” A cowhide boot is most common, but other exotic leathers such as alligator, ostrich, and python are available.
4 Remember there is a break-in process; expect your
boots to be stiff when new. Make sure you break them in before you wear them for an extended period of time. “When you are first breaking them in, go walk in them for a few hours. Usually, you only need to do that for a few days. Don’t go stampeding for the first few days of wearing them.”
Experience Alberta’s Special Areas Home to beautifully groomed golf courses and comfy campgrounds, here you will find high energy water sports, fishing, and the landscapes of the Badlands. History comes alive both in our museums and high action rodeos! The town of Oyen hosts an annual one-day Bull-a-Rama mid-July. 30 professional bull riders compete for $10,000. 2018 marks the 20th anniversary of this event, complete with a kid’s zone and pig scramble. Other communities in our area that host rodeos include Hanna, June 1-3; Buffalo, June 15-17; Consort, also June 15-17; and Jenner, July 6-8. Visit Willow Creek Adventures in Drumheller. Launched in the spring of 2017, they offer amazing trail rides through the Badlands and a heated arena for year-round riding fun. And for the truly adventurous, be sure to take in the Strathmore Stampede and sign up to Run With The Bulls! Each year since 2003, about 80 runners face three rounds of wild, untamed bulls. August 3-6, 2018
43 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
START YOUR HERE.
Start your road trip at
Riverfront Park, Bow River, Cochrane
403.932.6355 | 1.866.860.8846 10 Westside Drive | ramada.com
403.932.5588 | 1.877.932.5588 5 Westside Drive | daysinn.ca
44 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
403.932.1410 | 1.877.932.1410 11 Westside Drive | super8.com
Ten great reasons to visit Cochrane 7. Service with a smile
1. Sweet people, sweeter service
Cochrane Dodge Lost Sock Laundromat Luna Express Pure Luxe Massage
Deja Brew Espresso & Wine Bar The Gentry Espresso Bar & Wine Bar Fallentimber Meadery Krang Spirits Horse Creek Heritage Candy & Gifts Menchies And of course, MacKay’s famous ice cream celebrating 70 years.
8. A place to rest your boots
4. Authentic dining experiences
2. Adventure around every corner
Alberta Institute for Wildlife Conservation Boundary Ranch Bragg Creek Trails Brewster’s Kananaskis Ranch Golf Calaway Park Capture the Flag Outdoor Paintball & Airsoft Cochrane Lanes Glenbow Ranch Gypsy Caravan Adventure Hostels Inside out Adventures River Spirit Golf Club Rocky Mountain House Historic Site Saddle Peaks Trail Rides The Links of GlenEagles Three Beasts Indoor Playground Yamnuska Wolfdog Sanctuary
3. Our western culture and arts community
Cochrane & District Ag Society Cochrane Historical Museum Cochrane & District Ag Society Cochrane Lions Rodeo Just Imagan Art Gallery & Studio Lammle’s Western Wear & Tack Saffron Collective Studios Stockmen’s Memorial Foundation Studio West Bronze Foundry & Gallery Tony’s Western Wear
Canadian Brewhouse Cochrane Legion #15 Fantaci Sushi & Grill Fence & Post Half Hitch Brewery Killarney’s Cochrane Mehtab East Indian Cuisine My Greek Plate Original Joe’s Portofino’s Italian Ristorante Schooners on First The Boot
Back to Nature Retreat Bow RiversEdge Campground Hereabouts B & B Rockyview Hotel SpringHill RV Park
9. A breath of fresh air
Spend the day hiking, biking, running or fishing and you’ll soon see why Cochrane is a great place for recreation and hidden gem waiting to be discovered.
5. Unique shops
Home Treasures Global Pet Foods Heavenly Outhouse/Poor David’s Kitchen Boutique The Paisley Boutique The Rustic Olive Bar Spirit of Oneness/Earth Rocks!! Vintage Verandah
6. We love the nightlife Texas Gate Bar & Grill The Venue Bar & Grill
10. We’re 20 minutes from everything, literally. Only 20 minutes from Calgary on Highway 1A, find Cochrane along the banks of the beautiful Bow River with spectacular views of the rolling foothills and majestic Rocky Mountains.
Start your road tri
45 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
Tim Hall/ Cochrane Tourism Association
Cochrane Tourism Association
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. And, perhaps, no other community in Alberta represents our western ways, our western heritage, better than Cochrane. Located just half an hour northwest of Calgary on the Cowboy Trail, Cochrane (pop. 25,122) is a charming community with plenty of appeal. Rodeos, festivals, street markets, riverside paths, beautiful parks, 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 largescale livestock operation. Founded in 1881, the idyllic setting of the ranch is still enjoyed by thousands of people 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, and the town’s administrative offices.
A visit to 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 in the trail, 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 ranchland 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. The friendly staff there will tell you everything you need to know about this cycling hot spot.
46 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Cochrane Farmers Market, Cochrane Tourism Association
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 and features 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 through the historic downtown area should always be part of your plan. The western-themed downtown core is filled with interesting shops, galleries, cafes, saloons, and restaurants. Unquestionably, one of the most popular places to meet downtown is MacKay’s Ice Cream. 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,
Experience the West like it once was
Stockmen’s Foundation and Archive Located in the Cochrane RancheHouse 403-932-3782 smflibrary.ca 47 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
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 is dense and delicious. Although their maple walnut is a real classic, 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 stores - such as The Heavenly Outhouse (home decor), Poor David’s (cards and unique gifts), and Little Taste of Country (formerly Home Quarter, quality western food products & clothing) – is reason enough to visit Cochrane, here are certainly many others!
Spring Hill RV Park
RanchHouse Road RanchHouse Town Office
For example, the rustic Rockyview Hotel – an ancient wild west enclave that’s actually the third oldest hotel in Alberta – tells the story of how Calgarians used to hop on a horse or the train 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 drink together. 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
Stockmen’s Foundation and Archives
Historic Cochrane Ranch
Cochrane Tourism Assoc.
Rockyview Hotel MacKays Ice Cream
Fifth A ve W
ay S tE
Big Hill Pool
Griffin Rd W RI
RCMP Studio West Bronze Foundry & Art Gallery Griffin Rd E
Eco Centre Half Hitch Brewing Co.
48 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Bow RiversEdge Campground
Bragg Creek Calgary
Bow Valley Trail
A Little Taste of Country Firs t St E Krang Distillery
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 2018 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
November Cochrane Light Up Winter Wonderland Sleigh Rides at Historic Cochrane Ranche
December Christmas Farmers Market
Spring Hill RV Park
Cochrane Street Market June 21, July 19, August 16, September 13, 2018: 1st Street West, 5:00 – 9:00 pm. The Cochrane Farmers’ Market in partnership with the Historic Downtown Cochrane businesses invite you to experience a unique shopping experience in our Historic Downtown. Enjoy market vendors, artisans, food trucks, music, buskers and late night shopping at local businesses.
49 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
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 email@example.com www.springhillrvpark.com
The Craft Beer ‘Boom’ Hits Alberta Drive around a bend on Alberta’s iconic Cowboy Trail – any bend – and you’re bound to see a glorious scene of snowcapped mountains, cattle-peppered hills, and wind-battered pines on aerie ridge lines. For cowboys who live along the trail, these iconic scenes are forever etched on their hearts and minds. And, fittingly, they’re also etched on their beer cans. That is, if they drink the right beer. The right local beer! The newly established Six Corners Brew Works in Okotoks – one of a handful of new craft breweries operating in the heart of cowboy country – is taking its “branding” (no pun intended) seriously. Currently, all of their six flagship brews pay tribute to the land and the lifestyle, the famous landmarks, and the raw and rugged beauty that’s found along The Cowboy Trail. Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock for the past decade, you’ve no doubt noticed that the craft beer scene is taking off like wildfire. And it’s not slowing down. Nearly every city is seeing craft breweries burst onto the scene. And the beerloving masses are buying in. And so are the cowboys. Until their taproom opens in Okotoks in 2019, buy Six Corner’s beer at select liquor stores.
And craft beer makes sense on many levels. It works. Why not buy better tasting, better for you, better-for-the-local-economy beer? For beer lovers, there is no downside! In Alberta’s rural regions – where our world-class barley is grown – brewing delicious beer made with local ingredients makes sense. While Alberta has lagged behind BC and the US craft beer hot-spots such as Portland, Seattle, and Bend, to name a few, the gap is closing. The “Alberta Advantage” which, besides the beautiful barley and pristine water, also includes recently changed tax laws favouring small-volume brewers – is fuelling plenty of growth. And, along with numerous new craft breweries opening up in the major centers, there is plenty of beer “buzz” along The Cowboy Trail. Here are a few new craft breweries well-worth visiting on your next “trail ride”: Oldman River Brewing Ltd. – Located in the little town of Lundbreck near the southern tip of The Cowboy Trail, the rustic charms of Oldman River Brewing will win you over as soon as you walk through the door. The “snacky” local menu,
Photo Courtesy Half Hitch Brewing
50 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Photo Courtesy Half Hitch Brewing
The Craft Beer ‘Boom’ Hits Alberta friendly staff – and, yes, the terrific fresh beer! - are destined for stardom. facebook.com/OldmanRiverBrew Half Hitch Brewing Company – Half Hitch Brewing Company in Cochrane – a family-run brewery boasting a spectacular full-service restaurant and taproom - is a top attractions in this scenic, western-themed town. The food, the fun, the relaxed atmosphere - the scene here epitomizes what the craft beer movement is all about. halfhitchbrewing.ca Olds College Brewery – Need to get “schooled” on the merits of the beer craze? Take a trip to the Olds College Brewery. Not only will they whet your whistle with some wonderful craft concoctions, but their pioneering, student-run programs are providing plenty of fuel for the Alberta craft beer industry. Canmore Brewing/Grizzly Paw – Not surprisingly, the town of Canmore is one of the province’s hot spots for locally-made beer. Two breweries – Grizzly Paw and Canmore Brewing – are serving up the suds with plenty of style. While Grizzly Paw, with their super-popular brew pub, has been around for years, the Canmore Brewing Company is a new kid on the block.
However, they’re already turning plenty of heads with their sweet taproom and exceptional beers, such as the Railway Ave Rye IPA. canmorebrewing.com, thegrizzlypaw.com Bench Creek Brewing – Bench Creek Brewing has “hidden gem” written all over it. It is tucked away in the pines approx. 10 km outside of Edson. This pub has a friendly and “out there” atmosphere. Their delicious brews, such as the Naked Woodsman Pale Ale (get the story firsthand when you visit), are winning over beer connoisseurs from far and wide. benchcreekbrewing.com Not surprisingly, many other new craft breweries along (or in close proximity) to The Cowboy Trail are in various stages of development. Some, such as Six Corners Brewing in Okotoks, are already making beer and are currently building taprooms. And, coming soon to a “cowboy” town near you, such as Black Diamond, Turner Valley, and Bragg Creek, the local suds will soon be flowing. So on your next trip down The Cowboy Trail, just search “craft beer in Alberta”...and follow your nose.
Photo Courtesy Six Corners Brewing
51 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
By: Andrew Penner
Photo Courtesy of Bench Creek Brewing
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 minutes north of Crossiron Mills mall at Balzac. This community’s roots run deep. Mrs. Hannington opened a stopping house here, 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 became identified as Crossfield, named in honour of Mr. Crossfield, an engineer with CPR surveyor crew. In 1980, when the Village of Crossfield’s population reached 1,000 people, it was incorporated into a town, and by 2016 this had risen to 3,000 residents. Facilities now include a splash park, library, parks, rodeo grounds, curling rink, fish ponds, golf course, wetlands and arena. Named after a famous rodeo star, the Pete Knight Memorial Centre provides an opportunity for youth to participate in winter sports like figure skating, minor hockey and lacrosse. The Center also hosts the Farmers’ Market and other events.
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. This leg of the drive normally takes a good hour. 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.
52 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Experience Albertaâ€™s History
53 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
A Classic Cowboy Country Road Trip
Scenery Along the Cowboy Trail
The famous scene at Spirit Island at Jasper National Park
Sipping coffee, Ian Tyson crooning on the radio, we round a gentle bend in the road and our jaws drop. Yet another pastoral scene of rolling foothills, horses grazing in the foreground, and soaring, saw-tooth mountains in the distance. A tiny homestead clutches the top of a grassy hill and a tidy red barn anchors the scene. I pull over, put the flashers on, and grab my camera. Presto! Another idyllic Alberta scene is recorded.
Given the fact I’ve got a passion for landscape photography, there were numerous times when we (my wife and three boys rounded out my posse) had to pull over to record the beauty. In fact, during the 750 km journey, dozens of stops were made and nearly one thousand photos were taken. True, I’ve taken many photography-focused road trips before but, in terms of quantity, this one set a new record!
Our aim was true. This beautiful section of Hwy 22, also known as “The Cowboy Trail,” near Rocky Mountain House was a show-stopper. But, then again, our entire western Alberta road trip – a classic circle tour that incorporated super-scenic sections of the Icefields Parkway, the Yellowhead Highway, the David Thompson Highway, and, yes, The Cowboy Trail – was unforgettable on many levels.
From snow-dipped mountains biting into baby-blue skies to golden, grass-capped Alberta foothills peppered with pine, the variety and the quality of the scenes were spectacular from start to finish. The Columbia Icefields? Check! Glacier Skywalk? Check! Spirit Island? Check! And those were just a few of the highlights on the Icefields Parkway alone. Indeed, from a “postcard” perspective, there might not be a better circle route to travel in North America.
Besides visiting a number of awesome attractions - such as the classic fur-trading outpost at the Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site and a charming heritage ghost town called Em-Te Town - the breathtaking scenery along these roadways is what really stole the show for us. But this wasn’t really a surprise. After all, these are regarded as four of the most spectacular highways in North America! And incorporating all of them into one epic trip made this a road trip for the ages.
But this drive is definitely much more than just the ultimate photo safari. Numerous attractions and activities are found along the way. Hiking, camping, rafting, museums, dude ranches, festivals, rodeos, pow-wows, historic sites, saloons, farmers markets, artisan galleries, and so much more, make this trip a rich, variety-filled experience... especially if you allow enough time to explore at least some of the possibilities.
54 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
A Classic Cowboy Country Road Trip How much time do you need? Well, it really depends on what you want to see and do. For some people, the ideal itinerary would be a jam-packed, two-day affair. (If so, an overnight in Jasper, exploring the townsite and perhaps soaking in the nearby Miette Hot Springs, would be a nice option!) For other roadtrippers, crafting a four or five day getaway and travelling at a medium pace would be the ideal scenario. At that pace, you may want to incorporat a half-day hike or two, and perhaps some exploration at sites such as the Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site, where Canada’s amazing fur-trading past is celebrated, would be easy to do. Incidentally, the RMH National Historic Site is home to a Visitor Centre, museum, ancient fort ruins, tipi camping, and much more. And, without a doubt, it should be high on your list. Even if you take a week, or two, to complete your journey, many of the “secrets” lurking around the many twists and turns in the road will remain undiscovered. There are, literally, hundreds of sights and stops along the way. The options are endless! The internet offers a lot of information, good places to start would be sites like experiencethecowboytrails.com, parkscanada.ca, travelalberta.com, and icefieldsparkway.com.
Rocky Mountain House
For my little caravan, our planning included the key stops with a special emphasis on the amazing David Thompson Highway. This under-the-radar corridor swoops alongside rushing rivers, pristine mountain lakes, and serves up scintillating views around every bend. A few of the highlights of this leg of the journey include photogenic Abraham Lake, the beautiful Kootenay Plains, the historic town of Nordegg, a flight with Rockies Heli Canada, and Siffluer Falls, which is an amazing family-friendly half-day hike. Unquestionably, the David Thompson Highway was a highlight. The photos came fast and furious! But our “custom” three-night roadtrip – we camped in Rocky Mountain House, Jasper, and Saskatchewan Crossing – will be remembered for the many discoveries we made along the way. Places such as Beaver Boardwalk and the awesome biking trails in Hinton, canoeing on Jasper’s Pyramid Lake, and eating bannock and maple taffy in a tipi at the Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site are a few that come to mind. The only downside to the trip? Editing 1000 photos.
National Historic Site
55 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
Photos and Story by: Andrew Penner
Experience Drayton Valley Photos Courtesy of Evergreen Market
Whether looking for fresh produce in-season, or arts, or crafts and gift ideas year round, a visit to the long-running Evergreen Farmers’ Market in Drayton Valley will not disappoint. The market, which features 60 to 120 vendors depending on the day and time of year, has been running in Drayton Valley locations for more than 40 years, says Colleen Schoeninger, market manager. Drayton Valley is located on Highway 22 about a 1.5-hour drive southwest of Edmonton, or about three hours northwest of Calgary. The Drayton Valley and District Agricultural Society operate the market. The regular Wednesday market (10:30 am - 1:30 pm) operated out of the Drayton Valley curling rink for many years. Then with the addition of a Saturday market once a month, and the need for more space, the market moved in 2017 to a vacant building known locally as the Wellhouse on Industrial Road. The Drayton Valley Evergreen Farmers’ Market has been to some extent a victim of its own success, says Schoeninger.
“It continues to grow in popularity both from vendors and customers, so we needed a larger, more permanent home,” she says. “For 2018 find us in Mackenzie Centre located at 5737 45 Ave. in the Omniplex.” Saturday markets were held in January and February; the regular Wednesday markets begin March 7. More details can be found on the market website at: dvevergreenfarmersmarket.ca for updates. Schoeninger estimates the market has 25,000 customer visits each year. Weekly Wednesday markets draw about 500 visitors, while the Saturday market draws from 800 to 1,500 visitors. “In the immediate trading area in and around Drayton Valley we have a population of about 14,000 people,” says Schoeninger. “So the market is well supported by folks in the region.” The weekly Wednesday market accommodates between 50 and 70 vendors. Along with arts, crafts and homemade food products, which are showcased each week, during the growing season the market also features several vendors with a wide range of fresh produce from local gardens and farms.
56 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Experience Drayton Valley “And this area was hit hard with the recent downturn in the economy,” says Schoeninger. “So we also saw a lot of vendors who had been working in the oil patch, turn to other skills such as engraving, welding and wood working, who brought their products to the market. It was an important outlet that helped to supplement income for many families.” Because so many of our customers requested it, the Evergreen Market launched a monthly Saturday market in 2017. Initially, it was planned to run the last Saturday of the month from 10:30 am to 3 pm from September to April. But with strong support, the Saturday market now operates monthly, on a yearround basis as of January 2018. Saturdays the market plans for about 100 vendor tables. It has been drawing about 800 visitors, although as many as 1,500 people have attended special market days, such as Canada Day Celebrations on July 1, 2017. And there was very strong support for the ‘Christmas in September’ Markets, which ran both Friday and Saturday in late September. While most of the fresh produce is available only during the growing season, there is one exception. Doef Greenhouses at Gull Lake, a long time supporter of the Drayton Valley market,
supplies a variety of fresh greenhouse products such as peppers, tomatoes, and cucumbers year round. And it’s not just the adults who can find interesting items at the Evergreen Market. They also run a kids summer program that Schoeninger says is not only entertaining, but it is also educational as well. “We had 100 kids participate in this program last summer,” she says. “And they were involved in projects that included community gardening, berry picking, and jam making. We’ve had a composting day where they learn about composting, and a sewing day — learning to sew. And we also had a salad scavenger hunt, where they had to search through the market for certain types of produce, and then come back to learn how to properly wash vegetables and then turn those into a salad. Certainly these are fun events for the kids, but hopefully they learn something too about where food comes from and how to properly handle and prepare it.” For more info about the Evergreen Farmers’ Market, follow them on Facebook, or visit dvevergreenfarmersmarket.ca.
57 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
By: Lee Hart
Experience The Northern Leg Rocky Mountain House
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. Stroll along the interpretive trials. Kids will love the pint-sized play fort and puppet theatre along with a chance to see the bison.
Oil and gas production is a big driver in the local economy. The giant West Pembina oilfield is Canada’s largest. But don’t be fooled, the cowboy way of life is alive and well. Located along the picturesque North Saskatchewan River Valley, the Eagle Point - Blue Rapids Provincial Park System invites you to Get Active, Get Outdoors! Whether it’s an afternoon walk along the trails, a paddle down the river, or a ride through the forest - fun and adventure await you.
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.
Head north to the villages of Entwistle and Evansburg. Find the official residence of the Town Grouch at #10 Frowning St. in Evansburg. Can you spot Dippy the Chip Lake Monster? Stop for a picnic at the Pembina River Provincial Park.
Mayerthorpe (Trails End)
The hamlet of Alder Flats is located 71 km north of Rocky Mountain House and 49 km south of Drayton Valley. Here you will find two major western attractions. EM-TE Town is a western ghost town, but sadly it will be closed for the 2018 season. Ponderosa City is located right across the road though, and they offer gifts, home décor, clothing, tack, and saddles. Looking for a western wedding venue?
The town of Mayerthorpe, 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.
Enjoy a round of golf at Raven Meadows, sample “Vanilla & Honey” at Grey Owl Meadery, or hunt wild boar. Consider an overnight stay in a spacious log cabin. Then tuck into a hearty country breakfast before you move on.
Denny and Rod Hay ranch just outside of town but they are Mayerthorpe’s favourite sons. With an Olympic gold medal and 11 Canadian saddle bronc championships between them, the men stand little chance of being bested anytime soon. Mayerthorpe is rightly proud of the boys, so they renamed a portion of the trail as it runs through town. It is now officially known as Denny Hay Drive.
Getaways, Conferences Reunions, Weddings 21 bds in 16 bdrms in four lodges Plus Campground
email: firstname.lastname@example.org Ph: 1-780-388-2209
58 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
In the early 1880’s, the vast rangelands, ideal for cattle, drew cowboys to the eastern slopes of Alberta’s Rocky Mountains. Today this remarkable area is sliced by the “Cowboy Trail” snaking along Hwys #5, #6, and #22 to its northern terminus at the Town of Mayerthorpe. The small town (pop. 1320) is 130 km northwest of Edmonton on one of the popular routes north to Alaska. The town is part
of Wild Alberta, a consortium that highlights the outdoor adventures that abound in northern Alberta. wildalberta.com This is snowmobile country. Only half an hour away from 500 kms of award-winning trail networks run by the Whitecourt Trailblazers Club. SnoRiders magazine gave Whitecourt the highest rank for 'Favourite Overall Snowmobiling, Favourite Scenic Snowmobiling Area, Favourite Powder Riding, Most Challenging Riding Area AND the Favourite Area for Family Snowmobiling in Alberta'. In other words, it's pretty awesome with for everyone with a sled! 8 km east is the Rochfort Museum and its trestle bridge. It has a nice viewpoint, and you can grab a meal at the Trading Post before heading to the Paddle River dam just a few km south. In summer, stay at the Paddle River Dam Campground. Open May 15 to September 30, this popular site offers boating and camping. It features a stocked fishing pond, washrooms with flush toilets, coin-operated showers, and sports equipment rental. Everything you need for a good time outdoors. You can make a reservations at (780) 284-1753. In Mayerthorpe itself is the Fallen Four Memorial park, which offers a positive place to pay respect to the four officers who lost their lives in the line of duty. For more info: fallenfour.ca Significant local events include the Show & Shine Classic Car Show on the 3rd Saturday in June, the Agricultural Fair on the 2nd weekend in August and the Christmas Light Up on the 1st Friday in December.
59 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
Mayerthorpe is located at the junction of Hwy 43, The Canamex Corridor, and Hwy 22, the northern terminus of The Cowboy Trail. We’ve always enjoyed a cowboy heritage and our town is home to many rodeo champions, cowboys, cowgirls, high school rodeo competitors, and Canada’s famous Hay Brothers. Throughout the year, there are so many activities to enjoy and places to visit that you should plan to spend at least a couple of days in the area. You can camp beside the golf course, stay at the local motel or at one of the nearby country guest ranches or check out the Cowboy Storyboard located in Town along Hwy 22. Mayerthorpe’s Fallen Four Memorial Park was built in 2008 to honour the memory of four slain RCMP officers, and as a tribute
to all peace officers. It is a popular attraction for visitors, a stopping-off point for weary travelers, and a beautiful location for marriage ceremonies and wedding and graduation photos. From Mayerthorpe, you can head 8 km east to the Rochfort Bridge Trestle and Museum, one of the longest wooden rail bridges in western Canada. If you want to cool off and enjoy some water sports, the Paddle River Dam is just a few kilometers south of the bridge’s viewpoint. If the thought of an old-fashioned country fair excites you, head into Mayerthorpe on the second weekend of August to enjoy the agricultural fair. You will see bench exhibits, horse and cattle shows, ball games, and enjoy live entertainment and exciting demonstrations. The kids can try their luck at the penny carnival and enjoy the petting zoo. Whatever the reason for your visit to Mayerthorpe, be sure to stop by our unique gift shops, to eat a great home-cooked style meal at one of our restaurants, and to experience the small town hospitality that we have to offer. Check out our website for more information about our town, visitor activities and attractions available in the area. @Mayerthorpe1
60 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
Experience Mayerthorpe Indoor Rodeo: May 25 - 27, 2018 4-H Beef Show & Sale: June 4, 2018 Rangeton Farmerâ€™s Day Music Festival: June 8 - 10, 2018 County Cruisers Show & Shine: June 16, 2018 Agricultural Fair: August 11 - 12, 2018 Culture Days: September 29, 2018 Kin Club Christmas Market: November 17, 2018 Christmas Light-Up: December 7, 2018
Our Local Businesses and Attractions Welcome You...
www.mayerthorpe.ca 61 | ExperienceTravelGuides.com
Campground Directory Bow River 12 Three Sisters Lac Des Arcs 5,6 Bow Valley 5,6,9,17 Willow Rock 5,9,12,16 Sundance Lodge Mt. Kidd R.V. Park 1,5,6,19 Eau Claire 5,12 Sibbald Lake 5,7 Dawson Equestrian Canyon 5,7 Elkwood 5,6,7,9,17 Boulton Creek 6,7,9,16,17 Lower Lake 5,13 Mt. Sarrail 12 Interlakes Spray Lakes West 7,12 Beaver Flats Gooseberry 5 Little Elbow 6 Little Elbow Equest. 4,6 McLean Creek 5,6,9,18 Paddy’s Flat 5 Mesa Butte Equest. 4 North Fork Fisher Creek Bluerock Bluerock Equest. 4 Sandy McNabb 5,18 Sandy McNabb Equest. 4,18 Cataract Creek Etherington Creek 6 Etherington Creek Equest. 4 Green Ford Indian Graves Regular 5,10,11,14 Indian Graves Equestrian 3,5,10,11,14 Strawberry Regular & Equestrian 4 Burnt Timber 7 Fallen Timber South 7 North Ghost 7 Waiparous Creek 7 Ghost Reservoir 2 Red Deer River North 7 Red Deer River South 7 James-Wilson 7,15, Fallen Timber North 7 Cartier Creek 7, 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 49 for more information Bow Rivers Edge Campground, Cochrane email@example.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.
Apr. 29 | Sept. 25 Apr. 8 | Nov. 20 Apr. 29 | Sept. 5 Apr. 29 | Oct. 10 Apr. 1 | Oct. 25 May 20 | Sept. 18 Year round June 3 | Sept. 5 Apr. 29 | Oct. 10 Year round June 17 | Sept. 5 May 13 | Oct. 10 May 13 | Oct. 10 May 18 | Sept. 18 June 24 | Sept. 5 May 18 | Oct. 10 May 18 | Sept. 18 May 15 | Sept. 9 Apr 29 | Oct. 11 May 15 | Sep. 19 May 15 | Sep. 19 Year round May 9 | Sept. 19 May 15 | Sept. 12 May 15 | Sept. 12 Year round May 15 | Sept. 19 May 15 | Sept. 19 Apr. 29 | Oct. 11 Apr. 29 | Oct. 11 May 18 | Sept. 5 May 18 | Sept. 25 May 18 | Sept. 25 May 18 | Sept. 5 May 19 | Sept. 5 May 19 | Sept. 5 Sept. 5 | Nov. 30 May 1 | Sept. 9 May 1 | Oct. 14 May 1 | Oct. 14 May 1 | Oct. 14 May 1 | Oct. 15 May 1 | Sept. 16 May 1 | Sept. 16 May 1 | Sept. 16 May 1 | Oct. 14 May 1 | Sept. 16
$26 39 $26 36 $26 28 $26/$39 173 $26/$33 158 $31.50 30 $32.50/41/43/48 229 $26 51 $26 134 $26 10 $26 50 $26/$39 130 $26/$39 118 $26 104 $26 44 tent $26 48 $26 50 $26 55 $26 85 $26 94 $32 46 $26/$33 170 $26 98 $32 15 $26 34 $26 30 $26 66 $32 17 $33 112 $39 20 $26 102 $26 61 $32 10 $26 13 $26 32 $26 6 $26/$32 18 $308 30 $308 55 $308 169 $308 53 $26 80 $308 14 $308 50 $308 17 $308 34 $20 12
131 34 35 88 69 35 96 112 20
Coyote Creek Golf & RV Resort, Sundre coyotecreekresort.ca | 1-855-638-2450 Open Year Round | 40 Sites | Fees: $45 Ammenities: Flush Toilets, Showers, Sani Dump, Disabled Access, Firepits. You get the best of both worlds here at Coyote Creek, play golf all day and stay at your very own recreational property at night enjoying a campfire and the peace and tranquility of the resort. Adanac Adventures, Crowsnest Pass adanacadventures.com | 403-399-2331 Open Year Round | 10 Sites | Fees: $25 Ammenities: Firepits
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.
62 | Enter our Photo & Selfie Contests
• • • • • • • • •
• • • • • • • • •
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
• • • • • • • •
• • • • • • •
• • • •
• (28) • (156) • (30) • (229) • (130) • (118) • (41) • (24) • (170) • (29) • (32) • (6) • (35) • (90) • (25) • (20) • (17)
403-673-2163 403-673-2163 1-877-537-2757 1-877-537-2757 403-673-2163 403-591-7122 403-591-7700 403-591-7226 403-673-2163 403-673-2163 403-591-7226 1-877-537-2757 1-877-537-2757 403-591-7226 403-591-7226 403-591-7226 403-591-7226 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 1-877-537-2757 1-877-537-2757 1-877-537-2757 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-949-3132 403-591-7226 1-877-537-2757 403-591-7226 403-591-7226 403-995-5554 403-995-5554 403-591-7226 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-851-0766 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-637-2198 403-637-2198
Clearwater Trading, Caroline clearwatertrading.ca | 403-722-2378 Open Year Round | 47 Sites | Fees: $25-$35 Ammenities: Flush Toilets, Showers, Sani Dump, Firepits. Proud to offer you a separate, private venue for all your events’ needs. Call us today! Check us out on Facebook @ clearwatertradingevents Rosebud Valley Campground, Didsbury firstname.lastname@example.org | 403-335-8578 Open Apr. 15 - Oct. 15 | 33 Sites | Fees: $26-$30 Ammenities: Flush Toilets, Showers, Sani Dump 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
nEED A CHANGE OF SHORTS? Or perhaps something else to take home as a reminder of your trip to Bragg Creek? Visit one of our many quaint shops where youâ€™ll find something that will remind you of your adventure here.
The Bragg Creek & Area Chamber of Commerce
Proudly supported by
FUTURE STAMPEDE DATES July 6 - 15, 2018 July 5 - 14, 2019 Get your tickets and packages at calgarystampede.com TICKETS FOR THE 2018 CALGARY STAMPEDE GO ON SALE OCTOBER 2017