What to do in the Mountains in August

From stargazing to art classes to kayaking to comedy, here's what's going down in the mountains near Calgary this month.

Mount Engadine Lodge, on the Smith Dorrien Trail between Canmore and Peter Lougheed Provincial Park, is now serving Sunday brunch.

Photo courtesy of Mount Engadine Lodge


Go for brunch at Mount Engadine Lodge

Mount Engadine Lodge, a charming alpine inn on the Smith-Dorrien Trail between Peter Lougheed Provincial Park and Canmore, is now doing brunch on Sundays between 9:45 and 11 a.m. The brunch service is $25 for adults; $17.50 for kids with menu items that switch up weekly. Engadine also does a daily afternoon tea from 2 to 5 p.m. (for $17.50 per person) that includes fresh-baked strudel on Sundays.


Practice yoga at 6,700 feet at Lake Louise Ski Resort

Lake Louise Ski Resort is hosting morning yoga on the patio of the on-mountain Whitehorn Bistro on Saturday, August 5 and Sunday, August 20. The morning begins with a ride up the sightseeing gondola at 8 a.m. with a one-hour yin/yang class at 8:30 a.m. led by instructor Nikki Davidson. The $58.95 cost includes the gondola lift ticket as well as the post-class buffet breakfast at the resort base. All ages and abilities are welcome (participants are asked to bring their own yoga mat).


Crack up in Canmore

The Canmore International Improv Festival runs August 10 to 13 and features a line up of shows and workshops. In addition to appearances by Calgary’s Loose Moose Theatre Company and the Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival Hit Off Book The Improvised Musical, the festival is bringing in international talent from Columbia and Norway. Online ticketing is through venue partner Artsplace Canmore, with limited tickets available at the door.


Check out the Wapiti Music Festival in Fernie

The Wapiti Music Festival is two days of performances by Canadian artists in a riverside park just a couple blocks from downtown Fernie. This year’s Wapiti fest is on the evening of Friday, August 11 and all day Saturday, August 12, with a line up that includes Belle Game, Royal Canoe, Scenic Route to Alaska and Five Alarm Funk. Festival passes are priced for adults and teens; seniors and kids admitted free. The festival is continuing its annual tradition of commissioning a regional artist to design the festival shirt, with this year’s honours going to Roni Jurgensen of New Denver, B.C.


Get wet at Kanfest 2017

This annual gathering of whitewater kayaking enthusiasts takes place this year from Friday, August 11 to Sunday, August 13 on the Kananaskis River at Canoe Meadows. The weekend festival includes clinics, demonstrations and competitive events as well as live music and social events. To register, visit calgarykayakclub.com; registration includes Saturday breakfast, Saturday dinner and Sunday breakfast.


See Reba McIntyre perform in the Foothills

The No Greater Love Festival is a faith-based music festival staged on the scenic Stoney Nakoda Nation lands at the foot of the Rockies. In only its second year, the festival made a splash by announcing country-music superstar Reba McIntyre as the 2017 headliner. Crowds of more than 10,000 are anticipated at this family-friendly event, which takes place over the weekend of Saturday, August 12 to Sunday, August 13. On-site camping is available for festival attendees with a separate festival-camping pass. For tickets and information visit nogreaterlove.ca.


View the Perseid Meteor Shower from the top of Kicking Horse Resort

Eagle’s Eye Restaurant at Kicking Horse Resort in Golden will host a dinner and stargazing event coinciding with the Perseid Meteor shower on the night of Sunday, August 13. The event begins with a gondola upload between 6 and 7:30 p.m. to a buffet dinner. At 10:30 p.m. there will be a night-skies interpretive tour presented by astronomer Doug Thorp of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, followed by general stargazing and gondola downloading beginning at midnight. Tickets are $54.95 for adults, $27.95 for kids (price includes gondola, dinner and stargazing program) and warm clothes and blankets are recommended. To reserve call 1-250-439-5554.


Toast the launch of a new book about the geology of Banff, Yoho and Jasper National Parks

The Whyte Museum in Banff is hosting a book-launch event on Thursday, August 17 from 7 to 9 p.m. for Rocks, Ridges, and Rivers: Geological Wonders of Banff, Yoho and Jasper National Parks by award-winning geologist Dale Leckie. A former scientist at the Geological Survey of Canada and adjunct professor at the University of Calgary, Leckie has been leading geological field trips throughout his career. Rest assured, however, that you don’t have to go too far into the field to see the sites and features described in Rocks, Ridges, and Rivers — all are accessible from roadside pullouts or via short walks along well-maintained paths.


Get creative at the Cave and Basin

Parks Canada and the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity’s Walter Phillips Gallery are hosting a “Drawn to Nature” outdoor painting session on Saturday, August 19 at the Cave and Basin National Historic Site (the former bathing resort built around the lower hot springs in Banff National Park that has since been turned into an interpretive centre). The session runs from 10 a.m. to noon and features guidance from a painting instructor and an indigenous knowledge keeper. The session is open to all ages and experience levels with materials provided. To register in advance (required) contact the Walter Phillips Gallery at 403-762-6281.


Stop in at the new Buffalo Mountain Café in Banff

Buffalo Mountain Lodge in Banff has launched a new café-eatery on its premises. Open between 7:30 a.m. and 5 p.m., Buffalo Mountain Café will have coffee and grab-and-go items such as pastries, sandwiches and desserts. As part of the Canadian Rocky Mountain Resorts (CRMR) group that includes Deer Lodge in Lake Louise, Emerald Lake Lodge in Yoho National Park and Calgary restaurants Divino, Cilantro and The Lake House, Buffalo Mountain Café will also carry the CRMR Kitchen line of ready-made meals, charcuterie items and condiments.


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