Calgary Aquatic activities (boating and floating)
Here are some suggestions for those who complain, "there's no water around Calgary".
Canoeing comes in flat water or white water varieties. The Calgary area has plenty of both and local clubs provide challenge for recreational and competitive canoeists. Check out the Bow Waters Canoe Club (Inglewood) 235-2922, Calgary Canoe Club (Glenmore Park North) 246-5757, or Calgary Whitewater Club 246-7789.
Day at the Beach
Swim at Calgary’s only real beach at Sikome Lake (the "lake," though, is fake) in Fish Creek Provincial Park. The beach is open the summer season, and staffed with city Parks & Rec lifeguards.
Dragon Boat Racing
In late July, head to the blue Glenmore Park boathouse, at the end of Crowchild Trail South. Calgary teams compete, in several classes, to participate in the Canadian Dragonboat Championship in Vancouver, and the World Dragonboat Championship in Hong Kong.
Swim lengths, splash around with friends, or try the diving board at one of Calgary’s many indoor pools.
Calgary’s Bow River is world-famous trout fishing. The best fish are on the Bow River south of the "weir" by Memorial Drive. You WILL need a fishing licence. Also check out the Calgary Fish & Game Association 287-2808 which holds fishing derbies, and Trout Unlimited 221-8360
Calgary has several outdoor pools open from mid-June until the Labour Day long weekend.
Rafting on the Bow River
July and August is rafting season on the Bow River, after most of the cold mountain runoff is past. You MUST have Personal Floatation device (PFD or life jacket) when rafting. Tubing is not recommended (use the Elbow). The river is swift and cold, and the Calgary Fire Department regularly patrols it. Start at either Bearspaw Dam or Bowness Park, and "mosey" down to Princes Island Park.
The Olympic sport of rowing is practised on the Glenmore Reservoir. Take lessons or train with a team, with up to 8 rowers in a boat, with the Calgary Rowing Club (Glenmore Park North) 249-2880.
Learn to sail, or arrange for your boat to be moored at the Glenmore Sailing Club (Glenmore Park South) 238-2044, or Calgary Yacht Club (Lake Chestermere) 272-3300.
There are lots of places to swim for the fun of it, but if you want to excel, some of Canada’s best swimmers train here. Contact the Cascade Swim Club 252-8799, or the Killarney Swim Club 244-9995.
Tubing on the Elbow River
Late June until August is tubing season on the Elbow River. The rivers too shallow for large rafts (use the Bow). You must have Personal Floatation device (PFD or life jacket) when tubing. The Elbow is a little gentler and warmer with good water flow until the end of Stampede in mid-July. Start just below the Glenmore Dam, and coast down to Stanley Park or Lindsay Park. past that point it's real slow and sluggish.
Calgary has three wave pools, part of the "Leisure Centres": Village Square Leisure Centre (NE), Family Leisure Centre (SE), and Southland Leisure Centre (SW).
Calgary’s chinook winds and proximity to the mountains provides strong windsurfing winds. For the strongest winds head to Ghost Lake, 50 km west of downtown, up Crowchild Trail past Cochrane. Smoother winds are found at Lake Chestermere, 20 km from downtown, east on 16 Ave NE and the Trans-Canada, or east on 17 Ave SE.