Thursday, January 27, 2022

Ski and Play at Mount Norquay in Banff

My family, like most, tends to get stuck in the "familiar" where we ski at the same resort(s) every winter, and we look to the same tried and true adventures when we want to plan a family fun day from Calgary.

This winter I challenge you to visit a new ski hill, or if you don't ski, to try something new (even for a day.)

Skiing at beautiful Mount Norquay in Banff

We love skiing and playing close to Calgary in Kananaskis, but this winter we've been heading out to Banff and Lake Louise more than normal to shake things up a bit. After all, we can't easily hop on a plane to go somewhere exotic, so now more than ever, it's fun to visit new places close to home.

One of our recent adventure days took us to Mount Norquay, a ski hill we hadn't visited (in winter) in close to five years. We spent a day at Mt. Norquay last summer trying out the epic Via Ferrata course as a family, but it was high time we returned in winter.

The Mt. Norquay Tube Park is a fun winter adventure for all ages!

Everything you need to know about Visiting Mt. Norquay this Winter 

First of all, know that for the 2021-22 winter season, Mount Norquay has decided to implement the Province of Alberta’s Restriction Exemption Program (REP) across all facilities at Mt Norquay.

"The REP program requires those 12 years and over who are visiting us to show proof of vaccination, along with government-issued identification for those who are 18 years or older. An Alberta Government-approved, privately paid negative rapid test taken within 72 hours will also be accepted." - Visit the Mt. Norquay website for more information.

Masks are also required inside all buildings at Norquay. They do not have to be worn outside, but it would be considerate to wear your mask if sharing a chairlift with others outside your family.

Norquay is working hard to keep your family safe this winter

What to expect when you first arrive at Norquay for the day:

  • First, allow yourself time for "unexpected delays" when driving to Banff in winter. We were slowed down by an accident and two snow plows on the highway which delayed our arrival time. The road up to Mt. Norquay from the highway can also be slow going if it has recently snowed or the road is icy.

  • When you arrive, find a parking spot (I recommend arriving by 8:30am to get a good spot) and get dressed/ready to go at your vehicle. Alternately, if you have young children, there is a skier drop off area where you can quickly pull into for unloading skis and gear.

    We personally love using the skier drop off zone at ski resorts. We unload our skis, and then I go into the lodge with my son, the two of us carrying our ski boots, helmets, and a duffel bag of clothing/gear, while my husband parks and comes in to join us. 

    I also saw many families who had brought sleds with them which I imagine were useful for carrying gear (and small kids) into the day lodge. The sleds were all left outside and nobody seemed to be bothering them.

  • Have your proof of vaccination and your ID handy! You'll have to show both before you can approach the ski lodge. There is a table set up just past the skier drop off area, and you'll have to show your documentation there. 

    Note, you'll have to show your documentation again should you decide to go back to the parking lot for any reason so try to minimalize how many times you enter the resort property.

  • When you arrive at the main base area, proceed to guest services to buy your lift tickets (or buy ahead of time to save time) and then go into the day lodge to get ready to go.

    Norquay has a fabulous day lodge equipped with many racks where you can store your bags and your lunch. You can store your shoes there too if you want to put your boots on inside. (And shout out to Norquay who has the best day lodge set up I've seen at a local ski resort!)

  • Chairlifts start running at 9am and we always try to be in line ready to go for fresh corduroy or first powder if it's snowed overnight. Novice skiers will find the beginner learning area and the Cascade Chair right in front of the day lodge.

    For intermediate/advanced skiers, I recommend warming up on the Spirit or Mystic Chair for a few laps before progressing to the North American Chair (where you'll only find black runs and no grooming.)

    And to get to the Mystic Chair, it's easiest to go up the Spirit Chair first, traversing over to avoid the short climb between the two chairs.

    See a map of the resort here.

There are racks like this in the day lodge for storing your bags, lunch, and shoes

Using the Day Lodge:

The day lodge is set up with individual tables for those purchasing snacks or lunch from the cafeteria. There's also a large eating room for those who've brought their own lunch on the same main floor.

The lodge is also well set up with microwaves and hot water for those families who've brought their own food.

Pro tip: Kids in lessons take a break from 11:30 - 12:30 so the lodge will be the busiest at that time! If you can go in early at 11am for lunch you'll find it much quieter. Alternately you could wait until 12:30 but we found the staff needed a good half hour or more to get the place cleaned up after the lunch rush so don't expect to find a clean table until at least 1:00.

Inside the day lodge at Mount Norquay 

The large lunch room for those who've brought their own lunch


Downhill Skiing and Snowboarding at Mt. Norquay

Norquay for beginner skiers:

Norquay has a beginner learning area serviced by a magic carpet, along with a beginner chair, the Cascade Chair, where you can rest secure that your kids will never accidentally end up on a black run or get tired half way down the run and end up in a fit of tears on the ground. 

The Cascade Chair also provides access to the terrain park so youth may want to spend hours lapping this short chairlift if they enjoy park fun.

Once you've graduated from the Cascade Chair, proceed to the Spirit Chair and get off at the mid-station. From the mid-way point on this chair, everything is green and you'll be able to play around on nice short little runs.

There's also a green traverse off the top of the Spirit Chair if you accidentally go to the top. It will take you back to the Cascade Chair.

Know that there are discounted magic carpet rates.

Children 5 and under are FREE on all chairlifts with the purchase of an adult lift ticket.

And if you need a lesson or two, check out the Snow School programs at Mount Norquay. There's something for all ages and abilities. 

Skiing the terrain park under the Cascade Chair

Norquay for intermediate skiers:

If you're able to ski everything from the mid-point down on the Spirit Chair, try taking it to the top where you can try number 36, Abracadabra. It starts out blue at the top and then turns green halfway down. This run is generally groomed overnight and is a good run to lap a few times before progressing to the Mystic Chair.

The Mystic Chair accesses blue intermediate runs, many of them groomed. There are a few black runs as well if you want to see what a "Norquay black" feels like before moving on to the "Big Chair!."

I wish I could tell you which my favourites were, but uncharacteristically of me, I didn't pay attention to the signs as I skied down the runs. I guess that means they were all good and I flagged nothing in my mind as a "do not repeat."

There are also ungroomed runs off Mystic if you enjoy bumps and more playful terrain.

Pro tip: The Mystic Chair rarely has lines so if you're finding that the Spirit Chair is busy, just head on to Mystic and stay there. 

Enjoying first groomer laps off the Mystic Chair

You'll spend a lot of time on the Mystic Chair if you like groomed intermediate runs

Norquay for expert skiers:

Advanced skiers will want to head to the North American Chair or the "Big Chair" where you'll find steep lines, bumps, and all the views! I wasn't able to visit this chair, but my boys enjoyed this chairlift.

Know that nothing is groomed, there is no "easy way down," and the chairlift doesn't take scared skiers back down again if you chicken out at the top.

The easiest way to reach this chairlift is to traverse over from the top of the Cascade Chair.

Skiing the fluffy ungroomed stuff off the North American Chair

Mount Norquay also offers discounted afternoon skiing, special rates for "last hour skiing," and night skiing. Visit their website for more information on prices

And final pro tip: Norquay is busier on Saturdays, so try to time your visit for Sunday.

Enjoying the steep terrain off the Big Chair

Visiting the Mt. Norquay Tube Park 


If skiing isn't your thing or you want a fabulous multi-sport day, check out the Mount Norquay Tube Park:
"Tubing is a great family activity, for adults and kids from 4 years and up. (Must also be a minimum of 42 inches.) Our tube lanes are long (longest in Alberta!), fast, and offer a real thrill with no special skills required." - Read more here.

This was only our second time visiting the Norquay tube park but we had a blast and I love how gentle tubing is on the body. I'm recovering from a couple of injuries and there's no way I'm going to fly down a hill on a regular sled. I'd end up in the hospital for sure! Tube parks are designed though to keep everybody safe and contained in their own lane, in their tube, and free of crashes! 

When we were at the park we saw entire families out playing together with little ones as young as 4 years old sliding together with their parents or even grandparents. Everybody has to use their own tube, but you can go down in gigantic groups of 4-6 tubes at a time and it's a blast when you're all screaming and laughing together.

As with the ski hill, proof of vaccination is required to use the tube park and reservations are highly recommended this year. You can make a reservation on the Norquay website.

There are three sessions per day that you can sign up for if you want to visit the tube park:

- Morning session (10am - 12:30pm) - which is perfect if you want to take advantage of the discounted afternoon skiing

- Afternoon session (1:30 - 4:00pm) - Perfect for families driving out from Calgary and not wanting an early start

- Evening session (5:00 - 7:30pm Fridays and Saturdays) - Ideal if you want to spend the day skiing

For more information visit the Norquay website at the links above where you'll get info on pricing as well.

To save a few bucks, you can also get discounted Tubing tickets from Costco. Buy your tickets and then sign up on the Norquay website.

Tubing is an exhilarating activity for the whole family!

Norquay has the longest tubing lanes in Alberta!


Plan a Ski Getaway with a Stay in Banff


Mount Norquay offers free shuttle service from Banff with pick up service from many of the hotels around town. Leave your vehicle safe and secure at your hotel and enjoy being dropped off right in front of the day lodge without having to find parking at the ski hill.

We recently stayed at the Caribou Lodge & Spa, conveniently located on Banff Avenue. We were able to ski all day and then after checking into our hotel, could walk downtown for dinner (because clearly we needed more exercise after skiing.) Seriously though, it's hard to find parking in Banff, so if you can stay right on Banff Avenue in a hotel that has complimentary parking, you're golden! Add a hotel with a hot tub (we all need one of those after skiing,) and you're beyond golden.

If you want to plan a ski weekend, I recommend checking out the Banff Lodging Company. We've stayed at several of their properties and never had a bad experience. They have several hotels right on Banff Avenue downtown, or if you want a condo with a kitchen and separate bedrooms, there are a few fabulous properties up on Tunnel Mountain that we love.

You can also check out the lodging specials for Norquay here. 

And if you're looking for a fun Easter getaway, Norquay is hosting a giant Easter Egg Hunt on April 17th with chocolate eggs hidden all over the ski hill! Sign me up! 

Stay overnight in Banff with a free shuttle to the ski hill!

Returning to Mt. Norquay in Summer 

If you have youth over the age of 12, you'll want to return in the future to try out one of the guided climbing routes on the Norquay Via Ferrata.

You can read more here:

Read: The Ultimate Family Bonding Experience on the Mount Norquay Via Ferrata, Banff

Epic Adventure on the Mt. Norquay Via Ferrata 

Disclaimer: Our recent Norquay day was hosted by the resort. As always, all opinions and words are my own. We have also received hosted accommodations from the Banff Lodging Company.





Monday, January 24, 2022

Hot Springs and Cross-Country Skiing - The Ultimate Winter Getaway

We love visiting Fairmont Hot Springs Resort for what we call "48 hours in Mexico!" It doesn't matter what the weather is doing outside because once you step into the therapeutic hot spring pools, you can close your eyes and pretend to be anywhere you'd like to be (with no flights or jetlag!)

Recently we hopped over to British Columbia for a combined wellness escape + ski getaway weekend. We spent our days skiing and our afternoons/evenings relaxing in the hot pools. It was pure perfection!

Cross country skiing near Fairmont Hot Springs 
"48 hours in Mexico" at Fairmont Hot Springs

Staying at the Fairmont Hot Springs Resort 


Fairmont Hot Springs is located in the Columbia Valley of British Columbia between the communities of Radium Hot Springs and Invermere to the north, and the City of Kimberley to the south. From Calgary, the drive is just over 3 hours depending on where you live. It's easy enough to reach Fairmont on a Friday after work, and the drive is doable for a short weekend, returning to the city Sunday afternoon.

There are many hotels and resorts around the Columbia Valley, and we've stayed at other properties in the Fairmont area, but if you want to use the hot springs, you need to stay at the actual Fairmont Hot Springs Resort property. 

Pre-pandemic, you could visit the hot springs as a day user, but these days the pools are only open to resort guests. The good news: it means the pools are usually very quiet and never crowded! (I actually enjoy them a lot more when it's guests only.)

Guests staying at the resort get unlimited access to the hot pools and children will love the warm swimming pool located beside the large hot pool. The pools are a short walk from the main lodge building and you'll be given warm plush bath robes for the run over.

Guests not wanting to run over to the large pools will also find a smaller hot pool just outside the building (connected by a warm tunnel.)

Magical Fairmont Hot Springs

Running over from the lodge to the hot springs

Lodging Choices at the Fairmont Hot Springs Resort 


We personally love staying in the Mountain View Cabins for a winter glamping experience (though I'm not sure you can really compare it to camping when you have a full kitchen with microwave.) The cabins are very close to the hot pools and I appreciate the privacy you get when you're away from the main lodge. (No neighbors, nobody running down the hallways...)

I also like having two separate bedrooms in the cabins so that you can put the kids to bed earlier in their own room. The kids' room also has bunk beds which is fun!

The cabins are on the pricier side, but you get a fully equipped kitchen so you can save money by not having to eat out as much. If you plan to eat at the resort restaurants most of the time, consider staying in one of the lodge rooms where you'll be able to stay inside without having to walk between your cabin and the main building.

If you want to do a combination of eating out (I always like to eat dinner at the Bear's Paw Bar and Grill) and eating in your room, consider getting a lodge room with a kitchenette. That way you can make simple breakfasts in your room and you'll have a fridge to store lunch and snack items. 

You can view all lodging options here on the FHSR website. 

Mountain View Cabins at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort 

An inside look at one of the Mountain View Cabins 

Where to Cross-country Ski near the Fairmont Hot Springs Resort


There are several options for skiers of all abilities near the resort, and renting equipment is easy if you visit one of the Nordic Centres. 

From south to north, below are the following options for skiing: 

Skiing at the Kimberley Nordic Club 


Kimberley is approximately an hour south of Fairmont and it's a great place to go early or late season when there's not a lot of snow in the Columbia Valley. There are trails for all abilities and we really liked the easy single track trails that were very beginner-friendly. This would be one of your best choices for skate skiing in the Columbia Valley as well.

We had great fun this winter exploring the trails in Kimberley!
"Kimberley is a first class facility consisting of a variety of snowcat groomed trails complete with primary trails that allow skate and classic skiing. There are also narrower single track trails ideal for classic skiers who are looking for more solitude. These trails are of varying degrees of difficulty and length to accommodate all levels of nordic skiers. 
The modern facility includes a comfortable lodge with washrooms, 30 km of groomed double track trails, a 3.3 kilometre lit loop for night skiing, a 1.0 km lit sprint loop and 6.5 km of single track trails. The facility also has some trails specifically constructed to be Paralympic skiing friendly." - Kimberley Nordic Club 

 

There are trail fees in effect to ski at the Kimberley Nordic Club but you can pay when you arrive to ski. You can also rent skis if you need for the day.

We enjoyed a snow globe kind of day when we visited Kimberley to ski


Skiing at the Panorama Nordic Centre


Panorama Mountain Resort is a 40 minute drive from Fairmont and you'll find parking outside the Nordic Centre at the Grey Wolf Golf Course. Inside the clubhouse you can pay your trail fees, get a map, and stock up on anything you might need from new gloves to ski wax. You can also rent skis and equipment.

Skiing to the Hale Hut at Panorama Mountain Resort

Starting from the golf course we like to ski up to the Hale Hut and back, an intermediate ski which visits two huts in approx. 7 km round trip. The Hale Hut is heated and makes for a great lunch spot. If you want to go further, we skied the full Placer/Great Scott Trail out and back for 17-18 km total distance.

"The Panorama Nordic Centre at Greywolf offers more than 20+ km of regularly groomed trails dedicated to cross-country skiing. Through forest and alongside Toby Creek, the cross-country specific trails provide an uncrowded experience in spectacular mountain scenery." - Panorama Nordic Centre

 

Skiing along Toby Creek at the Panorama Nordic Centre

The trails are groomed daily and are great for both classic and skate skiing. Dogs are also allowed on some of the trails but you'll need to purchase a special $5 pooch pass if you want to ski with your pup. (Honestly if you have a dog though, you'll want to go to Nipika to ski - keep reading below.)

There are also separate trails for hiking and fat biking (with fat bike and snowshoe rentals on site if you have non skiers with you.)

Perfect grooming at Panorama 

You don't see perfect fresh grooming like this every day!


Skiing on the Lake Lillian Whiteway and Junior Johnson Trail, Invermere


Invermere is 20 minutes from Fairmont Hot Springs and there are a few options for skiing here.

The Toby Creek Nordic Club grooms and track sets several trails around the Columbia Valley including a loop on Lake Lillian outside Invermere and a loop on the Junior Johnson, a double track beginner mountain bike trail across the road from the lake.

Each loop is approximately 3 km in distance and you can ski both from the same parking lot. The Lake Lillian loop is 100% flat and great for novice skiers. The Junior Johnson Trail has a few easy hills as the trail winds its way through the forest. 

The Junior Johnson loop is groomed and trackset for cross country skiing, and there is also a groomed loop for fat biking and hiking (without tracks.) We skied both loops when we were there for a total of about 5 km. 

Users are requested to pay a $5 day use fee payable online here or in the cash box on the welcome sign.

There are no rentals available so bring your own equipment.

Note: Always check the current trail report before heading out here because the Columbia Valley often has warm spells in the winter, forcing the ski club to close access to the lake loop due to unsafe conditions. The Junior Johnson is also only groomed and trackset when there is enough snow.

The Panorama Nordic Centre is the place to ski when it's been to warm to safely ski on a lake.

Easy skiing on the Junior Johnson Loop outside Invermere

Easy family skiing on the Lake Lillian Whiteway

Skiing on the Lake Windermere Whiteway, Invermere


The Toby Creek Nordic Club grooms and track sets a large loop around Lake Windermere as well. It's another easy option for beginner skiers and the loop is 100% flat. The same trail fees apply as above, $5 per day, and dogs are allowed to join you while you ski. 

"In 2014 the Lake Windermere Whiteway was named the world’s longest skating trail by Guinness World Records. At over 30km in length, this multi-use trail offers ice-skating as well as groomed skate and classic cross-country ski trails.
The Whiteway provides winter sports enthusiasts an incredible facility, adding to the already abundant list of winter activities available in the stunning Columbia Valley. It offers 2 access points: one at Kinsmen beach in Invermere and one at Windermere Beach." - Toby Creek Nordic Club

I've personally never skied on this lake but I've ice skated the loop many times. 

Note As of January 2022, there is no skiing on Lake Windermere as the ice didn't form well this season and it's been too warm to safely ski on the lake.  Visit the Toby Creek Nordic Centre's Facebook page for updates. Things change quickly so hopefully there will be skiing on the lake soon.


The Lake Windermere Whiteway offers ice skating and cross-country skiing in winter


Skiing at Nipika Mountain Resort


Nipika Mountain Resort is an hour north of Fairmont and we like to ski here on our drive back to Calgary. If you have a dog, this is THE number one place you'll want to ski. The resort is very dog-friendly and they are allowed off leash on the trails.

And if you don't have a dog, you'll still LOVE skiing here. Nipika is one of the best Nordic Centres we've skied at, and the trails are incredibly beautiful. We love skiing the north trails to the Natural Bridge, over to the Confluence Bridge, and back in a 12 km loop.

Skiing over the Natural Bridge at Nipika Mountain Resort 

"Nipika Mountain Resort is a cross country ski mecca with 50km of groomed trails. They are professionally groomed on a regular basis for both classic and skate skiing. The terrain ranges from beginner to expert and flows through treed areas, open spaces with mountain views, and alongside the Kootenay and Cross Rivers." - Nipika Mountain Resort

Trail fees apply to ski here and you can pay them when you arrive inside the main lodge. You can also rent skis, fat bikes, or snowshoes - and the resort maintains an extensive trail system with separate trails for all user groups. (And their fat bike trails are amazing if you want to try a new sport.)

You'll also find three warming huts on the trail system which are very appreciated on cold days! 

One of the warming huts at Nipika where you can start a fire and have lunch or snacks

The Confluence Bridge at the Kootenay and Cross Rivers

Skiing along the Cross River at Nipika Mountain Resort


Read more about Winter Adventures in the Columbia Valley





Disclaimer: Our recent stay at Fairmont Hot Springs Resort was hosted by the resort. As always, all words and opinions are my own. 






Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Night Rise, a Celebration of Winter at the Banff Gondola

Night rise is a beautiful celebration of winter, magic, wonder, and our beautiful Rocky Mountains. Created in partnership with the Stoney Nakoda Nation, their spoken word and authentic music bring life and a feeling of connection to this new event at the Banff Gondola.

Words to live by at Night Rise, Banff Gondola


A Whole New Way to Experience the Summit of Sulphur Mountain after Sunset 


I've visited the Banff Gondola many times, and have both hiked up Sulphur Mountain and ridden the gondola to the summit in every season of the year. Always on the search for something "new" though, I jumped when I found out that there was a new nighttime event happening at the gondola, one that would be unlike anything I'd ever experienced.

Night Rise gave me the opportunity to stand on top of a mountain, at night, in winter!! (Something I never thought I'd get the chance to do without a lot of discomfort, cold, and just a touch of suffering.)

Night Rise is a magical event in Banff this winter


I then received a second opportunity to return with my family so that my son got to stand on top of a mountain, again at night, and in winter! (On a very cold night I must admit.)

Standing on top of Sulphur Mountain, we were able to look down on the glowing lights of Banff below us, we danced and twirled through swirling magical lights on the outdoor observation deck, and we watched the trees light up with pulsing light and music along the boardwalk.

Even the gondola ride was a new experience with traditional spoken word and story telling from the Stoney Nakoda Nation, soothing, calming, and welcoming. The gondola ride provided a transition where we got to greet the night, welcome the darkness, and prepare for the wonder waiting for us on the mountain.

Winter on top of a mountain is pretty cool in Banff!

Looking down on the Town of Banff from the top of Sulphur Mountain



And watch the fun little video below for a glimpse of what to expect at Night Rise!




What to Expect from the Night Rise Experience 

First of all, this is a ticketed event and you can't just hike up Sulphur Mountain at night to experience Night Rise. The observation decks and upper terminal building are only open to those who have purchased tickets for Night Rise.

Second, this is a family event and would appeal to children of all ages. It's also a great event for people of all mobility and fitness levels because the gondola removes all effort involved in reaching the summit of Sulphur Mountain. Then when you reach the summit, there are elevators inside the building, benches everywhere for resting on, and windows on every level in case it's cold outside and you want to watch the light displays from the warmth of the building.

One of the viewing platforms lit up with interactive lights for Night Rise 

Night Rise at the Banff Gondola

The exhibit is spread out over four stations inside and outside the gondola building. "At these stations, visitors lounge among twinkling snowflake lights, walk atop interactive projections and explore like never before." - Banff Gondola

The event begins the second you step inside the gondola and ends when you reach the ground again, with spoken word, lights, and an interactive experience providing entertainment on the ride up and down.

Winter on top of a mountain in Banff

Diamond Dust, one of the magical indoor stations at Night Rise

Magical Diamond Dust at Night Rise


And watch the fun little video below for a glimpse of what to expect at Night Rise!




Everything you need to know about attending the event 

Tickets can be purchased online through the Banff Gondola website and the event runs through March 12th, 2022. 

Dinner packages can also be added on when you buy your tickets. Night Rise does not include food unless you add on a reservation for one of the two restaurants at the top of the mountain. The Sky Bistro would be my recommendation for a romantic meal with your partner and if you choose this addition, you'll enjoy both an appetizer and entrĂ©e at the beautiful Sky Bistro Restaurant on top of Sulphur Mountain. 

The Northern Lights Alpine Kitchen is a great family-friendly option where you'll be treated to a full buffet meal on top of Sulphur Mountain.

If you choose to purchase a dinner option, you can either eat first and then tour the Night Rise stations, or you can do your tour first and eat after. Everything is self directed and there is no "one way" to experience Night Rise. 

Come play outside in Banff on top of Sulphur Mountain

Other tips for visiting Night Rise 

  • The gondola cabins are not heated so make sure you dress warmly with a winter coat, perhaps ski pants for the children, along with mittens and toques. You'll also be outside for at least half an hour if you want to fully experience the interactive lights from the two viewing decks.

  • You won't need winter boots, but you'll still need shoes that are suitable for walking around outside and that have a bit of traction in case it's slippery outside. Don't wear high heel dress shoes is what I'm saying in a nut shell!

  • This is not a "fancy" event. Warmth is more of a priority so leave the dress and heels at home. Even if you're going to be dining at the Sky Bistro you do not need dress pants, a suit, or a dress. This is mountain chic fashion so wear your nicest down coat.

  • A relaxed tour of the Night Rise stations including the ride up and down will take 90 minutes to two hours. If you want to extend your time on top of Sulphur Mountain I recommend purchasing a dinner package. 

  • Masks are required inside the gondola building at all times and recommended outside on the viewing platforms if you are in close proximity to other guests.

  • Night Rise includes moving and colored lights in case that should be a concern for you or a family member.

  • By order of the Government of Alberta, proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative COVID-19 PCR or rapid test result within 72 hours of your visit is required to visit the Banff Gondola.

Twirling around in the interactive lights at Night Rise

Dancing on top of a mountain at night in Banff

Background and more Information on Night Rise 


Night Rise was created by the Montreal-based multimedia studio Moment Factory, and I especially appreciated their collaboration with the Stoney Nakoda Nations who contributed authentic spoken word and an original soundscape.

Key messages I took away from the experience were that the sky is not the limit, that we can listen with all of our senses, and that there is a deep feeling of peacefulness that comes from being connected to the land and to our history. 

For more information, photos, and videos, explore Night Rise on the Banff Gondola website for more information.

Celebrate Winter at the Banff Gondola


Disclaimer: Our visits to Night Rise were hosted but as always, all opinions and words here are my own. 

 





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