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How to Recycle Your Beverage Containers & deliver #ChangeThatCounts in Alberta

I've been collecting beverage containers since my university days, first as a method of funding my weekly trips to the pub and secondarily as a means of keeping the streets clean. Fast forward many decades and it's the environment that I'm most interested in now. I never pass up an opportunity to pick up an empty beverage container lying in the park or on the road on my daily dog walks, a fact my neighbours…

The Ptarmigan Cirque Hike in Kananaskis Country

If you want a short hike that delivers superlative mountain scenery in short order do the popular Ptarmigan Cirque hike in Kananaskis Country. It's a 3.6 kilometre loop (if you include the interpretive trail) with a family-friendly 210 metres of elevation gain. There is the option to hike a section of the scramblers trail that heads for Mt. Rae. The perfect hike for out-of town guests new to mountains For a short hike Ptarmigan Cirque…

Biking the Glenbow Ranch Section of the Trans-Canada Trail

If you're looking for a stunning section of the Trans-Canada Trail (TCT) in Alberta to cycle visit Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park, an oasis of rolling green hills on the banks of the Bow River. While the TCT trail is completed in Glenbow Ranch there is a plan to connect Cochrane to Calgary; the only thing missing is a small strip of land near the Calgary city limits. For now the best way to get to…

Alberta’s Fabulous Table Mountain Hike

You're in for a treat if you do the fabulous Table Mountain hike in southern Alberta's Castle Provincial Park. Locals have known about the hike for years but it's only starting to come into its own now that the area has received provincial park status, more infrastructure is in place and images are starting to show up on Instagram - capturing people's imagination. What's so special about the Table Mountain hike? It's the views and…

A Visit to Southern Alberta’s Castle Provincial Park

Southern Alberta is the new home of not one but two provincial parks - Castle Provincial Park and Castle Wildland Provincial Park, the only fresh additions to the park system in over a generation. Between the two they cover 105,500 hectares, protecting a landscape of big mountains, forests, meadows and rolling hills. The land, considered sacred to local First Nations groups, safeguards watersheds and important wildlife corridors for a number of species including grizzly bears…

Kananaskis Hikes: Opal Ridge South

If you're looking for Kananaskis hikes that deliver big time on mountain views be sure to include the steep hike up Opal Ridge South. The hike is full of surprises - the good kind - especially after you get through a steep, rather nasty section of scree. The route up Opal Ridge South Start at the north end of the parking lot at the gas station across from the Fortress Mountain turn-off on Highway 40.…

Banff Hikes: The Aylmer Lookout Trail

One of the great early season Banff hikes is the Aylmer Lookout Trail with the option to add extra mileage and hike to Aylmer Pass or even up Aylmer Mountain. The trail follows Lake Minnewanka for much of its length - and after a stiff climb delivers superlative views up and down the lake. But be warned. Although it's not a hard hike, it is a long one. To Aylmer Lookout its 23.4 kilometres return;…

Hiking in Kananaskis: The Wasootch Ridge Trail

With good weather and some free time on weekends I've been chomping at the bit to go hiking in the Rocky Mountains. Although I have a hiking wish list, I know many of the peaks I want to climb this year are still snow bound. That's where Instagram comes in handy. You can often see in real time the condition of hikes you want to do - and get ideas for future ones, especially if…

125 Nature Hot Spots in Alberta

It took 15 months to give birth to my second book - 125 Nature Hot Spots in Alberta - The Best Parks, Conservation Areas and Wild Places, co-authored with my friend Debbie Olsen, who in fairness wrote a whole lot more of the book than I did. I swore after my first book I'd never write a second. It's just like babies; you forget about the sleepless nights, the lack of free time, the bleary…

Northern Lights Viewing: The Fort McMurray Experience

Fort McMurray gets a lot of press but almost never for Northern Lights - yet. While the lights have been around since time immemorial, a Northern Lights viewing experience for tourists is a newer thing - and all part of diversifying the local economy. Fort McMurray has lots going for it. It's a short easy flight from both Calgary and Edmonton, the viewing season is longer than in other Northern Lights hot spots like the…

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