This year I have no trips planned… and that’s really hard for me. So, on my one weekend away this summer for a family event I decided to treat it like I was a tourist.
A few years ago my grandparents had migrated a half hour west of Calgary to the small hamlet of Bragg Creek. Nestled in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains it is a popular destination for vacations and short day trips from the city – especially for bikers.
On the drive up on Friday afternoon I could see why. It was one of those views that as Albertans, we have a tendency of taking for granted and getting used to. But Evie had just reminded me the week before how stunning that view is when she relayed her parents excitement at the view. So on my drive I made sure take in the view. While the view was still beautiful it wasn’t the clearest day and the view wasn’t nearly as good as on those beautiful cloudless days. The mountains creep up on you getting larger and more majestic as the foothills swallow you and you leave the prairies behind.
Between family busyness it ended up that I only had a couple of hours free to do the tourist thing. So the next day my brother and I headed into town from my grandparents acreage to take in all the little town had to offer.
Bragg Creek has one gas station, one grocery store, one pharmacy, and two liquor stores. It also boasts a number of small kitschy shops. Moose Mountain General Store – filled to the brim with every item you could possibly need, from children’s toys to bird seed and pet supplies, to a full hardware section – all crammed in a tiny shop. Then there’s the Sugar Shake Bakery – a cute little bakery decked out in 50’s decor, the tables and signage and even the music a throwback.
Behind these lie the main shopping plaza including Frontier Candy and Ice Cream which is an old fashioned candy and ice cream store that boasts 76 flavours of ice cream… we definitely indulged…
There are many more little shops and galleries including the One of a Kind Art and Gift Gallery and my favourite – the Bragg Creek Oil & Vinegar Market – a small store specializing in different flavoured oil and vinegars which you can taste test to your heart’s content.
So we ate our old fashioned ice cream and basked in the sun – if we’d had more time there is tons to do in the fabulous countryside – hikes and biking and horseback riding and a surprising number of cafes and restaurants for so tiny a place.
So hopefully when next I journey to Bragg Creek I can take more in, or at least stop at my favourite shops. This is the kind of quaint little town that coupled with the peaceful countryside relaxes and soothes you.