Glenbow Ranch
Glenbow Ranch

Glenbow Ranch hike

Calgary
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Glenbow Ranch hike

Distance: 5.8mi
Elevation: 308ft
Time: 2-2.5h

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Discover the rolling fescue grasslands at Glenbow Ranch, an active cattle ranch set against breathtaking vistas where you could spot the occasional cowboy or two. This underrated destination offers shorter and longer trail routes and is a great place to explore year-round.

Glenbow Ranch Hike Map

Getting there

From downtown Calgary, exit right onto Crowchild Trail SW from 6 Ave SE West and Bow Trail SW. Take AB-1A West to Glenbow Road in Rocky View County. Then, turn left onto Glenbow Road. The park will be on your right-hand side where parking is available. Please note that the parking lot can fill up quickly on weekends.

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About

When to do

Year-round

Family friendly

Older Children only

Route Signage

Average

Crowd Levels

Moderate

Route Type

Lollipop


Glenbow Ranch
Elevation Graph


Route Description for Glenbow Ranch

While the route we show on the map is one of our favourite hiking paths in Glenbow Ranch Provincial Park, there are plenty of alternative paths at Glenbow Ranch, making it the perfect place to come back to each season to try different trails.

Start the hike in the Glenbow Ranch parking lot and set out on the main paved path. Continue to follow the paved path through a forested area (which is one of the few spots of shade on the trail).

Pass the Glenbow Ranch Park Foundation building on your left and when the road splits, take the short path on the left, then once it ends, turn right.

Enjoy the sounds of crickets in the scenic grassland as you walk down a big hill with great views, continuing south for approximately 2789ft until the road begins to bend to the left. Follow the bend and stay on the road for another 0.9mi.

This stretch of road will find you in the bottom of the valley. You’ll also pass a few small barns with cattle gates, and if you’re lucky you just might spot a few cows enjoying the sun.

Once you reach the T intersection, turn right and continue down the trail. Get the kiddos involved and ask them to find posted signs along the way, each explaining the local flora and fauna.

You’ll notice railway tracks up ahead, so check both ways before crossing and find yourself at a three-way crossroad. Continue straight all the way until the next bend in the road, where you’ll get your first glimpse of the Bow River.

Here, the trail snakes up and down along the river in a lollipop shape, creating one big loop back to the three-way crossing. Retrace your steps on the path you were on earlier, but when you come to the Y intersection go left.

Follow this paved path over a few small hills with frequent elevation changes. Continue along the looped path, following the trickling Bow River until you reach the only fork in the path. Here, head right up the coulee on a gravel path.

Find yourself back among the trees with shade and a cool breeze. Here, the path zig-zags slightly along a coulee, which makes for a fun change of trail. Continue to follow the trail back past the Glenbow Ranch Park Foundation building until you reach the parking lot.

Insider Hints

  • Mosquitoes can be bad in this area, so we recommend bringing bug spray.

  • There is little shade on the trail, so bring sunscreen, a hat, and water to keep cool in hot weather.

  • This is a great place to come in every season as the area changes dramatically depending on the time of year.

Comments

Coll A. 2 years ago

There's an active cattle ranch set against breathtaking vistas where you could spot the occasional cowboy or two. This underrated trail offers shorter, and longer trail routes and is a great place to explore year-round. There's a zig-zag path slightly along a coulee, which makes for a fun change of trail.

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Zina SW. 2 years ago

It's a simply astonishing hike! It feels isolated from the rest of the world.

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Christopher Trujillo 2 years ago

Simply amazing! If you're looking for a great place within your reach in the city, Glenbow Ranch is the place to visit.

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Nigel F. 2 years ago

Amazing hike! It's actually beautiful. Good thing it's not as hyped as other hikes.

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Artemis H. 2 years ago

Splendid walk. There are tons of interesting views and animals on the farm. Bryan keeps on saying he wants to be a cowboy when he grows up.

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Emma Tree 3 years ago

It's fairly short but enjoyable. It has views of the river, mountains, and foothills. The paved pathways make for easy access and the granular trails are a bit more challenging.

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Aaron P. 3 years ago

Excellent place for walking and cycling. The majority of paved paths make it safe and easy, with a few inclines.

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Rebekah L. 3 years ago

Nice trail! Great for some bird spotting. It's fairly popular so there are always people around.

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Fredie L. 3 years ago

An easy hike that rewards you with the beauty of nature. Breathtaking sceneries. There is little shade on the trail, so bring sunscreen, a hat, and water to keep cool in hot weather.

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Saba L. 3 years ago

The grasslands were expansive! There are few forested area, but most of the trails are exposed to elements.

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11 Comments Show all

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