Park #3: Sandy Beach Park

Date visited: July 10, 2021

Location: SW Calgary

Best Time of Year To Visit: Summer is the best time hands down! There are areas where you can raft, wade and/or swim in the river. I think it would be nice to see in the winter when the river freezes.

I had selected this park randomly before, but it got pushed forward. Plus, I’m currently focusing on parks in the western part of Calgary because I don’t have to go through the area where the Stampede is to get there. If what I have heard on Reddit is true about the Stampede, I would rather avoid the area. I managed to see three parks during Stampede time, but those are for separate posts. Additionally, for the next couple of months, I am going to prioritize parks that have gardens or are better for summer activities.

Entering and Exiting the Park:

We entered the park via Brittania Way after getting the bus to Elbow Drive. It was super scenic, but that wasn’t the best choice for my Mum. There was a long, gravel path down to the river where the park was, and there were lots of holes where she could have fallen. She has mobility issues and she had to hold the railing all the way down. Plus, I was always on standby to make sure she didn’t fall. I don’t recommend that entrance for people with mobility issues.

We left by Riverdale Ave SW, which was much better. It was a long walk, but it was a lovely neighbourhood! It was a higher-income area, but I had never seen so many trees and greenery in that type of neighbourhood! It’s like every person’s house was its own mini-park. Normally, I find areas like that to be rather sterile in terms of greenery. For instance, I have never seen trees line the streets and dull, manicured lawns. I used to see those areas and be like, “Keep your boring houses!” I was stunned to see how beautiful Riverdale Ave is! Plus, I appreciated the cooling effect from the tree-lined street. I have a thing for tree-lined streets. There’s something relaxing and pleasant about them. Anyway, back to the park!

Park Features and Highlights:

I could see from where we entered that there were a lot of families wading, rafting, swimming and doing other water activities in the Elbow River. We crossed the bridge, and as we walked along the path, we saw there were areas with picnic tables that allowed barbecuing. Apparently, you can rent them for parties or events. I also noticed a play area for the kids. There were some trails peeling off from the main trail, but clearly, you don’t go to this park for the trails. There were areas where dogs are allowed to be unleashed too. Of course, they want to splash around.

The Best Part:

Mum and I went wading in the water. Let me tell you, it was the best river I have ever immersed myself in. It was clear and had this mountain freshness. You could tell it came from Rocky Mountain snowmelt. The temperature was absolutely PERFECT!!! It was a hot day and I didn’t want to leave the water. The current isn’t too strong, and it’s not too deep. I waded about halfway out before I realized I might fall over if I’m not careful. There are times where I know I am living the dream and love doesn’t even come close to describing how I feel about my beautiful new city!

The best part: it was incredible to see all these families and kids having fun. I have felt sorry for kids during this pandemic because they have all this energy and need to play and do kiddie things. Additionally, I wasn’t worried about COVID-19 there because honestly, I feel safer around families than I would at the Calgary Stampede at this time. At the end of the day, I was pleasantly tired. Getting out more has made my well-being level go UP!!

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! 70 parks left!