Where to Learn Survival Skills for the Fun of It

Aquabatics, archery, axe throwing — there are places to learn these skills in Calgary and have some fun at the same time.

Illustration by Pablo Iglesias.

Although people keep talking about the zombie apocalypse, and the Walking Dead has been on for what feels like forever, we are skeptical this will ever happen, so just learn these things for kicks.


Archery Games Calgary

Combat archery is similar to dodgeball in that the objective is to tag all of the opposing players (in this case with foam tipped arrows) to eliminate them from the game. At Archery Games, each booking includes a variety of combat archery games like Dog Eat Dog in which there are no teams and it’s every person for themselves. Or Pandemic, the rules being once you’ve been tagged by the opposing team you retreat to their side of the field and become their newest team member.

22, 2015 32 Ave. N.E., 587-387-2799, archerygamescalgary.ca


Aquabatics Calgary

With a philosophy that there is a paddlesport that everyone can enjoy, Aquabatics Calgary offers comprehensive kayak and SUP lessons like Zero to Hero — a multiple course whitewater progression from no experience to Class lll. Learn everything from introductory lessons to safety and rescue skills, or take your knowledge a step further and become an instructor.

300, 8435 Bowfort Rd. N.W., 403-288-9283, aquabaticscalgary.com 


Axe Throwing Calgary

Players go head-to-head throwing axes in a round robin competition, culminating in an elimination tournament to win a spot on the podium. Skilled axe coaches facilitate your event from start to finish by teaching range safety and the fundamentals of throwing different axes. Hone your hand-eye coordination and feel empowered by throwing an axe at a target during these two-hour events.

5923 3 St. S.E., 1-844-403-2937, axethrowingcalgary.ca


Bolder Climbing Community

In the unlikely event of an apocalypse, you probably won’t have the necessary equipment to climb your way out of a dire situation. You might have to rely simply on your strength and stamina. This is why Calgary’s first bouldering-specific climbing facility should be your go-to training centre. Ideal for climbers of all abilities, Bolder Climbing’s personalized programs are designed to improve your climbing through a variety of strength, mental and technical training over six weeks.

5, 5508 1 St. S.E., 403-255-9565, bolderclimbing.com


Outdoor Survival at The Outdoor Centre

The U of C’s Outdoor Centre offers a variety of courses aimed at teaching you to how to survive outdoors including how to build a fire and a shelter, how to handle medical emergencies, what to carry and wear, how to navigate and signal for help and how to build a variety of snow shelters. Courses include a combination of classroom and field study.

2500 University Dr. N.W., 403-220-5038, ucalgary.ca/outdoorcentre/


The Shooting Edge Inc.

This professional, fun and safe shooting range accommodates novices and professionals alike. Here’s how it works: unlicensed shooters must be accompanied by a licensed shooter, or be in a group of two or more supported by a ranger officer at all times. Second, fill out the necessary paperwork (Government ID is required. You will not be able to shoot without it.) Day passes are priced per person and include your own Range Officer, all day range access, firearm rental, one target, as well as eye and ear protection. Once you’ve had a safety briefing you’re off to the range for target practice.

4, 510 77 Ave. S.E., 403-720-4867, theshootingedge.com

From the Urban Survival Guide in Avenue Calgary’s January 2019 issue.

Learn more about the people and organizations moving Calgary forward with Avenue's Innovation Newsletter.

This article appears in the January 2019 issue of Avenue Calgary.

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