My husband snorted when I bragged about all my Girl Guide badges. I redeemed myself by expertly building an inferno in the firepit, but he was snickering again by verse nine of “Found a Peanut.” Oh well, my kids still think I'm cool. Here are some places to show off your mad camping skills in Alberta.
Camping in Alberta Parks
When February rolls around, we sit down to decide which provincial parks we want to visit this year. Reserve.AlbertaParks.ca is up and running by the third week of February and we want to be ready to book the popular campsites before they disappear.
Whether we take the RV, tent or rent a cabin, we always discover something new. We've hiked switchback trails up to hidden mountain-top lakes, waded with pelicans, played on soft white sand beaches and seen prehistoric dinosaur bones. At night, we roast wienies over the campfire, perfect our s'mores and gaze up at a million twinkling stars.
Camp at the Farm
My little animal lovers loved getting up close to cute critters at Ol' MacDonalds Resort in central Alberta. After naming all the baby goats in the petting zoo, we rented bikes, played mini-golf, built sandcastles on the beach and rode the mini-train a whole bunch of times.
After a full day exploring southwestern Alberta, we returned to The Great Canadian Barn Dance for a home-cooked Alberta beef dinner, dancing lessons and a hayride. By the time we carried the little ones back to our lakeside RV lot, we were ready for some quiet time together, snuggled up with a cup of hot chocolate.
Tipi Camping in Alberta
Watching stars sparkle through the top of our tipi, my head was filled with herds of stampeding buffalo, mischievous coyotes and colourful Blackfoot dancers. We had a busy day at Head Smashed In Buffalo Jump, a UNESCO World Heritage Site near historic Fort Macleod. We toured the huge interpretive centre, hiked to the jump, watched traditional hoop dancing and listened to stories around the campfire.
Glamping in Jasper
Since we were married there, Jasper is a special place for us and we go at least once a year. This summer, we're booking a cottage tent at Whistlers Campground - a short 3 km bike to town along the Athabasca River. We'll bunk among the towering pines in a cross between a tent and a cabin with heat, lights and a floor - ahhh, the indulgence.