Date visited: July 14, 2021

Location: NW Calgary

Best Time of Year To Visit: This looks like a good year-round park.

This park wasn’t selected randomly. We were in the area, so we decided to check out this park. I think this park was near the outskirts of the city. We had to go pretty far out to get there. Additionally, we heard the Snowbirds were going to fly over Calgary. For those of you who don’t know, the Snowbirds are the air stunt team for the Royal Canadian Air Force. You can read more about them here. At first, I thought it was for the Calgary Stampede. I found out later that it was to honour healthcare workers, so the flight path went over certain hospitals. Did we see them? Read on to find out.

Park Features and Highlights:

Bowmont Park is yet another park that is next to the Bow River. I love the number of bridges around, especially when a train went over one of them. There’s another park across the river called Bowness Park. It’s one of the gems of Calgary, which I hope to see before the summer is over. We also managed to see traces of beaver life nearby. There was a tree that was clearly chewed by a beaver and we saw evidence of a new beaver dam, but no beavers this time! I still haven’t seen one yet, but that’s okay. Some of the trails allow dogs off the leash, which is pretty cool. The trails have a lot of shade from trees and you can find spaces overlooking the river. It’s a great place to cycle at too.

We arrived at the park at the start of the hour where the Snowbirds were expected to fly over. We heard helicopters flying over and thought there were checking the airspace. Later, we found out it was to monitor the air quality. You know how when you’re anticipating something and you keep your eyes and ears peeled and wonder about whether you’re going to miss it? We had that because we thought we should have made an effort to be near the Stampede safely that day, so we had more chance of seeing the Snowbirds.

And Then…

We stayed near the river as long as we could and then decided to carry on walking. We figured we might not see the Snowbirds, but I still kept my ears peeled. Suddenly, I heard the roar of an airplane that was not a passenger jet! We looked towards the river and we saw the Snowbirds in the distance! We waited to see if they would turn around. They did and flew directly over the trail we were on! It was too fast for me to catch a photo. But also, I wanted to enjoy the moment without worrying about a good photo. The Snowbirds were in a maple leaf formation, and the angle was such that we couldn’t see all the planes. I saluted as they flew over!

Other people on the trail were just as excited as we were to see them. I loved feeling this calm Canadian pride and patriotism that I have noticed is common here. I have had the pleasure of seeing other Air Force stunt teams like the Red Arrows during London 2012 and the Blue Angels flying into San Francisco for an airshow. But none of those experiences compared to seeing the Snowbirds fly over where I was standing! I admit I do have some qualms about militaries in general, but I have to admit the stunt teams are cool! Third Culture Kid, Third Culture views of Air Force stunt teams! Anyway, back to the park.

Some Challenges:

I found that sometimes the trails separate from the main trail were a little confusing. Plus, there were A LOT of biting insects! I recommend insect repellant for this park. Also, it was kind of weird trying to enter the park. There was a bridge over the river, but for a while, we weren’t sure whether we were supposed to cross it. Plus, there was only one way to walk across the bridge, and we had to find a way to get to that path. Eventually, we got there, but it was super weird. When we got to one end of the park, it was clear there was some sewage treatment going on and it wasn’t pleasant.

If you see this, you’re in the sewage treatment area

I have been taking a little break from going to parks because of the amount of smoke that’s been in Calgary. There’s nothing like wildfire smoke to ruin a park experience, and it’s rather unpleasant to be out anyway. Whenever it clears, I will go to a new park.

If you miss any of my future posts on my challenge or want to reread my past posts, you can go to my page Calgary Parks Challenge. You can also find more photos from the parks on my Instagram page here.

See you at the next park in my challenge!

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  1. It’s so nice that they did that snowbird show! It’s a thoughtful sign of gratitude for the healthcare workers. The park also seems very peaceful too. I’d love to visit Calgary someday.

    1. I think it was super Canadian to have the Snowbirds do that for the healthcare workers. All the parks here give a sense of peace. I hope you do visit Calgary. It’s a hidden gem!

  2. Another lovely place! Always carry insect repellent or you’ll be eaten alive- learnt that the hard way at Niagara a few years back πŸ˜‚

    1. I learned that the hard way! At least I got off easy by comparison to the other stories I heard. Thanks for all your lovely comments! πŸ™‚

    1. The bridges were definitely cool, especially the train bridge. It was amazing we were in the right place at the right time! Thanks for commenting 😊

  3. It is a fun challenge to visit all the parks in the city. Without this kind of challenge we tend to go to the same places over and over again.

  4. Looks like a great walk. We have visited Bowness Park, but not Bowmont, funny as we are from Beaumont. That being said, we really do not get down to Calgary much, especially since the pandemic started. We had a similar experience, watching the Snowbirds fly past in 2020. Our city is close to the airport where they landed for the day, so we had a pretty good view. We have also seen them fly over our stadium at Grey Cup time. This aerobatic team does stir up the Canadian pride, for sure. Enjoy your holiday Monday. Allan

    1. Yeah, Bowness Park is literally across the river from Bowmont Park! That was noticeable since we were trying to enter Bowmont Park. It’s amazing to see these incredible stunt pilots at the top of their game doing their ballet! I found out after seeing them that they sometimes perform in the US, so I asked my Mum, “Does that mean we Canadians are about to burn down the White House again?’

      1. I love that story about Canadians burning down the White House, because in 1812, Canada did not even exist. It was a colony of Britain and it was the British who did the deed. Ain’t history strange? Kinda reminds me of the satirical song “Blame Canada” from South Park. Glad we can be guilty of something more than maple syrup and back bacon, eh? Hee Hee. Allan

      2. History is indeed strange. I do like how it’s a joke on 22 Minutes a lot. I haven’t heard that song. Sounds pretty weird. Sometimes it is nice to play around with things. Hee hee indeed!

    1. That’s cool that you saw the Brazilian team! I will look them up. There is a running joke here about Canadians burning down the White House in the War of 1812. I know the Snowbirds sometimes perform in the US, and that means we’re burning down the White House! Just kidding! πŸ˜‚ Thanks for commenting 😊

    1. Well, I hope I’m reminding you in a good way. The Snowbirds were amazing! After we saw them, my Mum said she saw them parked at an airfield in California once and I asked, “Does that mean we Canadians are burning down the White House if we see the Snowbirds in the US?” She thought it was hilarious! I have noticed that’s a running joke here. Thanks for commenting 😊

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