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  • Writer's pictureTrisha Isaac

Canmore, A Place To Call Home

Updated: Jun 15, 2023

It’s going to be hard not to be biased here! Like a lot of people who live in Canmore, I fell in love with it right away. Now, life had me on the road a few times, living in Calgary, Penticton, and Vancouver, but I always found my way back.

So what made my family want to live here? If you’re looking to make the move and live in Canmore full-time, here are my top things you need to know.

It’s a Small Town At Heart

I like to say that I’m a small-town person at heart. I grew up in Creston, British Columbia, which is a town almost the same size as Canmore. I love walking down the streets in Canmore or going into one of the amazing restaurants and knowing people, and I mean really knowing people.

Call me crazy, but I love this feeling. I loved it so much that I jumped right into this community when we moved here in the early 2000s. I’ve been part of the Rotary Club of Canmore, assisting our annual Festival of Trees celebration for over ten years and this year, I’ve taken over as the fundraising chair for the club. Our club in Canmore is a vibrant, active group of men and women and the friends I have made as a member are treasured.

If you’re craving a life of anonymity then Canmore might not be the best place to settle down full-time. But, if you’re looking for a place where getting to know your neighbours doesn’t freak you out the Canmore could be perfect.

A Backyard With No Fences

It’s hard to feel cramped when the Rocky Mountains are in your backyard, and I don’t mean figuratively. The mountains are right there. I remember when we first moved here with two dogs and we were concerned we did not have a fenced yard for the dogs. Our realtor said to us, “look around, this is your backyard.” It’s true and we have never had a fenced yard the whole time we have lived here! Canmore is the land of rabbits, dogs, and wonderful people.

Most people might be shocked to know that I’m not a super outdoorsy person. I know, I know but backcountry skiing and hiking isn’t really my style. I am more of a road cyclist and runner. That said, I do spend lots of time with my dog, Doug, and my husband, Glenn, walking the amazing pathways and doing short hikes in the area.

However, if you are into backcountry pursuits, skiing, dog sledding, cross country skiing, road and mountain biking...Canmore is the perfect place. We love our outdoor activities so much that you’ll see people biking down the street all year long, even if it’s -30 degrees Celcius out.

There is a downside to having a spectacular backyard; everyone wants to visit. Weekends are quite busy in town as folks from the city come to explore the area. But, when you live here, you’re not limited to exploring on just the weekend. Many people I know often head out to hike or ski midweek or after work, taking advantage of the quiet and empty trails.

Great Shopping & Restaurants & Facilities & Doctors

One of the best things about Canmore is our local business and recreational facilities. We have a huge selection of high-quality restaurants for such a small community. Whatever you may be craving—steak, tapas, cocktails, Mexican—we have it here. We have the best Steak Restaurant, bar none, in Western Canada.

The shopping is excellent as well. I find there is very little that I need to head to the city to purchase. From clothing boutiques, shoes, sporting goods, and specialty wine and beer shops, we have local businesses that cater to your needs. In other words, we have big-city services with a small-town feel.

Our community facilities are second to none. Elevation Place with its climbing gym, pool, library, art gallery, and gym. We have the Legacy Trail, where you can bike from Canmore to Banff on a paved trail off the highway. Build it and they will use it!

And last but not least, we have access within minutes to the Canmore Nordic Centre for both cross country skiing and mountain biking. These are all just in town. Imagine what lies outside our little town boundary?

And we have some incredible doctors here. I guess they see the health benefits of a place like Canmore.

Having A Sense of Security

Having a second-home and living in Canmore full-time are two different things. Having a second home is very convenient. You don’t have to worry about if there’s going to be a place available each time you visit. But, there’s always that feeling of being rushed, like you have to make the most of your time in Canmore.

Having a permanent home in Canmore has that sense of security—it’s immovable. You know that at the end of each day, you don’t have to drive an hour or more to get home. There’s a feeling of relief when the weekend traffic dies down and the mountains are quiet again.

There’s obviously a lot to plan for if you want to live in Canmore. Some things are more expensive and your living space might be tighter. But, there’s nothing that can replace that feeling of working and living in a place you truly love.

If you have more questions about what it’s like to live in Canmore, I’m happy to chat!

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