Canmore is surrounded by the spectacular Canadian Rockies.
Canmore is strategically located 106km/66mi west of Calgary, Alberta on the Trans Canada Highway, an easy and beautiful drive of about one hour from downtown Calgary.
The town of Canmore is just 5 kms (2 miles) from the entrance to Banff National Park to the west and 22 kms (12 miles) to downtown Banff. This scenic drive takes just 15 minutes.
The beautiful Bow River flows down from Lake Louise, through Banff and Canmore and on to Calgary and beyond. The Bow River is one of the premium trout fishing rivers in the country.
You can enjoy a variety of mountain trails, ranging from leisurely walks to challenging hikes, or take day trips to surrounding attractions such as Banff, Lake Louise, and the Kananaskis Country.
Wildlife in the Bow Valley abounds with Elk, Mountain Sheep, Deer, Black Bears, Cougars, Coyotes and many others. The mix of wildlife and growth always creates some difficult problems, but the environment and the native animals are always paramount in the planning process in Canmore. The creation of wildlife corridors and public awareness programs through the schools and media have heightened our appreciation and respect for our natural wildlife population.
Canmore came into world wide prominence during the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics when it hosted the nordic ski events at the newly developed Canmore Nordic Centre. This fantastic facility features over 70km of trails and more than 850ft (260m) total elevation.
The large local arts, crafts and cultural community is widely respected for its diverse talent pool with many local art galleries, pottery studios etc. See Local Art Galleries for more information.
Canmore's climate is known as a mountain zone on the lower slopes of the Bow Valley and has unusually mild winter weather due to frequent warm chinook winds that drift into the valley about twenty times a year.
Canmore is also fortunate to have a low annual precipitation of generally around 47 cms (19inches).
The Town of Canmore was settled in 1883 during the building of the Canadian Pacific Railroad, thanks to the abundance of high quality steam coal nearby, and grew steadily to a population of 450 in 1888.
The last coal mine closed in 1979 when the workings were sealed and the land reclaimed. Canmore was part of Banff National Park from 1902 until 1930 and continued as a game reserve until 1956. Since then, Canmore has turned to tourism as the dominant industry in the valley.
The incredible beauty of Kananaskis Country, a recreation preserve of a million acres, lies easily accessible to the south and east of town.