After a long hike on a hot day, sometimes you want to unwind on a patio with a cold beer or an iced coffee. You don’t want to go anywhere fancy — you haven’t showered or changed out of your hiking gear — but you don’t want to go right home either.
Whether you’re hiking in town or out in the mountains, there are nearby patios where you can satisfy your post-hike, patio-and-beer craving.
After a hike in Weaselhead Flats
Go to: 1600 World Bier Haus
If you’re planning a casual hike but don’t want to drive out to the mountains, explore the Weaselhead Flats. Park at Glenmore Landing and choose either an out-and-back route to Weaselhead Flats past South Glenmore Park, or walk all the way around the reservoir.
If you go all the way around and also wandered through the Weaselhead Flats, you’ll have walked more than 16 kilometres. Once back at Glenmore Landing, cool down with a frosty beer on the partially shaded patio at 1600 World Bier Haus. The patio here is huge and you won’t have to walk many more kilometres to get back to your car when you’re done.
1600 90 Ave. S.W., 403-457-4287, 1600bierhaus.com
After a hike in Big Hill Springs Provincial Park
Go to: Cochrane Coffee Traders
Spend a day hiking in Big Hill Springs Provincial Park and you’ll be treated to views of waterfalls, streams and interesting rock formations. When you’re done hiking, make the roughly 20-minute drive to Cochrane Coffee Traders in downtown Cochrane. There are only a few benches on the shaded veranda, but there’s a sunny courtyard with patio tables and chairs beside the cafe. And, this cafe is a popular pit stop for cyclists so you won’t feel out of place wearing your sweaty hiking gear. Get yourself an iced coffee and baked treat to enjoy on this cabin-like cafe’s veranda or courtyard.
114 2 Ave. W., 403-932-1695, coffeetraders.ca
After a hike in Kananaskis
Go to: Forte Restaurant
Maybe you are going to spend hours scrambling up Opal Ridge. Maybe you are planning to spend day climbing Wasootch Peak. Whichever hike you’re doing in Kananaskis, you’ll want to unwind on a patio before the drive back to Calgary. Instead of making a detour into Bragg Creek (which is also a good option) stop at Forte restaurant and patio at the Pomeroy Kananaskis Mountain Lodge. The Italian menu features oven-roasted pizzas, house-made pastas and great mountain views.
1 Centennial Dr., Kananaskis, 403-591-6373, lodgeatkananaskis.com
After a hike near Canmore
This pub is right on the corner of Railway Avenue and 8th Street, so chances are you’ll be driving past it on your way out of Canmore. After you’ve hiked Grassi Lakes or Ha Ling Peak, stop for a drink and a snack (like nachos or chicken wings or other classic pub items) and enjoy them on the large, tree-shaded patio that looks out to Policeman’s Creek.
749 Railway Ave., Canmore, 403-678-5168, therosecanmore.com
After a hike in Banff National Park
Go to: The Bear Street Tavern
Be sure to stop into Banff’s town centre after hiking all day in Banff National Park. At The Bear Street Tavern, a casual pub, you can relax post-hike on the patio. At the courtyard patio, there are umbrellas to keep you shaded and they aren’t too loud and bustling — the restaurant isn’t located right on Banff Avenue. Treat yourself to a Tavern pizza and a frosty beer (or two, if you’re not the designated driver).
211 Bear St., Banff, 403-762-2021, bearstreettavern.ca