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38 Fun & Interesting Facts About Calgary

Since making Calgary my permanent home I've been keen to learn some of the fun and interesting facts about this ever evolving city. Here are 38 interesting facts about Calgary I've discovered.  Calgary is referred to as Cowtown by some and it still has the Wild West image. The Calgary Stampede, an annual 10 day event (starting this year on Friday, July 6th) bills itself as "The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth." It features the…

Banff Hikes: Castle Mountain Lookout

I have a friend in town visiting from Ontario. It's been 25+ years since she's done any Banff hikes so she's overdue for a dose of the Rocky Mountains. We debated how to get high in the Rockies especially in early June when most trails are still snow covered. We nixed the rigorous 23.4 kilometre Aylmer Lookout hike - too tough for the first real hike of the season. We thought about doing the hike…

A Stop at The Columbia Icefield on the Icefields Parkway

Over Easter weekend John and I drove the Icefields Parkway from Lake Louise to Jasper. I've driven it many times but always in the summer. In the winter it's a drive you should only do when the conditions are right. And even though the calendar says spring, in late March it's still very much a winter drive. We were exceedingly lucky. The roads were clear and there wasn't a snow storm in the forecast. Even…

Skiing in Kananaskis: Ribbon Creek to Skogan Pass

With another sunny weekend in the forecast it was time to do some skiing in Kananaskis Country. Our goal was to ski to Skogan Pass from the trailhead for Troll Falls. We'd almost made it to Skogan Pass a few weeks before from the Dead Man's Flat trailhead and relished another chance to actually summit the pass. We were slow to get going and didn't actually start skiing until 10:45 AM. But as this was…

Cross Country Skiing to Skogan Pass From Dead Man’s Flat

I don't think many people think about cross country skiing to Skogan Pass from Dead Man's Flat. But last weekend that's exactly what John and I set out to do. We wanted a trail that was reasonably close to home and this one fit the bill. Access is via an easy one hour drive from Calgary. The trailhead itself is just a kilometre up the road from the Dead Mans Flat exit off the Trans-Canada Highway…

Snowshoeing to Lake Agnes Teahouse Above Lake Louise

I spent a few very enjoyable hours snowshoeing by myself to the Lake Agnes Teahouse above Lake Louise. I'd hiked the same trail in July. The experience was 100% different - though both were great. In the summer the Lake Agnes Teahouse hike is known for its crowds. On the day I snowshoed to Lake Agnes I met one person at the very beginning of the trail (at 10:30 AM) and I didn't see another…

Kananaskis Country Snowshoeing: West Bragg Creek Trails

Kananaskis Country can get a lot of snow so it's perfect for snowshoeing and cross country skiing. Last week - by sheer luck - we ended up on the West Bragg Creek snowshoe trail and what a delight it was. Our intention had been to check out the Bragg Creek area. It's a small community not far from Calgary and I'd heard that there was cross country skiing nearby. But that's all I knew. Fortunately I have a nose…

The Search for Alberta’s Snowy Owls

Yesterday I spent the better part of the day searching for Alberta's snowy owls. I'd been invited to join a photography friend who has an abiding love of nature and all things related to photography. The plan was to meet in northern Calgary and head east into the prairies. It wasn't any more detailed than that. I sure learned a lot about snowy owls. How do you find snowy owls? The snowy owl loves the prairies -…

Lake Louise Skiing: The Fairview & Tramline Trails

Lake Louise skiing on the Fairview and Tramline trails is an incredible way to spend a day, especially because in this part of the world snow comes early and stays late, there's lots of it and the backdrop is world-class Rocky Mountain scenery. It really doesn't get much better than this. At last count there are at least 17 cross-country ski trails in the Lake Louise corridor. They range in difficulty from novice all the way through…

Ingredients For the Perfect Winter Day Trip to Banff NP

The ingredients are simple. The results are fantastic. Here's my easy recipe for a perfect winter day trip to Banff National Park. Rouse yourself out of bed at the rather ungodly hour - at least over the holidays - of 6:30 AM. This only needs to happen if you're driving from Calgary and trust me; it's the only negative for an otherwise perfect winter day trip to Banff National Park. Pack your gang into the car for the…

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