I’m super excited because this spring, I got a new bike! Not only has it been great for helping me get to my friends’ houses and summer activities, but I’ve also been able to check out some of the great biking trails in Calgary. Did you know Calgary has about 800 km of pathways that connect along the rivers as well as through parks? There’s also another 290 km of street bikeways and cycle tracks. Here are some of my favourite places to go:
This bike trail is a big loop but the cool part is you can start in several different spots. It also joins up with different pathways like the Elbow River system and a pathway system that takes you to Fish Creek Park. What I like about this route is you see a bit of everything from fields to forests to neighbourhoods. The whole loop is about 16 km but you can do less than that just by starting and ending at different points. There are a lot of benches on the route too if you want to take a break and enjoy the scenery. There are a few big hills but most of the route is pretty easy to ride.
We are lucky in Calgary to have a provincial park right in the city! Like the Glenmore reservoir, the Fish Creek pathways can be accessed from a lot of different neighbourhoods across south east and south west Calgary. It is also close to a couple of different C-Train stations so even if you live in the north, you can bring your bike down by LRT (as long as it isn’t rush hour). The park has about 80km of trails and half of those are paved. There are a lot of nice picnic areas too, so I like to pack a lunch and a book for a relaxing break halfway through my ride. Fish Creek has a lot of wildlife including deer, beavers, and moose plus over 200 bird species! It’s nice to feel like I’m deep in nature without even leaving the city.
This park has a lot of pathways, paved and unpaved and some great views of the city. If its name didn’t give it away – there are a lot of hills here so it’s best to try this park out when you are looking for more of a fitness challenge (there are some flat areas though). What I like about Nose Hill is that I can go there a lot and never really take the same route twice because of all the different paths they have. There are a few different access points to the park from 12 different north Calgary neighbourhoods so it’s a great spot to meet up with friends.
Biking is a great way to see different places and get some exercise. To be safe, I always make sure I do these things before I go out for a ride:
- I tell my parents where I’m going and when I’ll be back.
- I always wear a helmet
- I bring lots of water with me – Calgary can be hot and dry so it’s good to bring extra
- I make sure my phone is charged and with me
- I check my bike before every ride. Even though its new, I make sure the bell is working, my tires have enough air and the brakes and gears are working
- I follow the rules of the road and pathways. I use my bell to alert people I’m passing. I pay attention to path signs and make sure I’m not going too fast. I also slow down or even walk my bike if there are a lot of pedestrians in some areas.
I hope you like these places as much as I do! Happy cycling!