Join us on a walk with a knowledgeable guide who will share the fascinating stories of Grotto Canyon from an Indigenous perspective. Grotto Canyon has a long and intimate relationship with Indigenous people from this area. There are important landmarks, signs, and even message boards left on the land that are read in a unique way by those of us who have learned to understand.
Though many who have studied the pictographs in the canyon through academia have formed theories on the pictographs. Program participants will have an opportunity to learn from the cultural teachings that give a very different perspective on the canyon, the pictographs, the landscape and the other elements that give rise to the story of Grotto Canyon.
Please arrive at the Canmore Museum (located at 902B 7th Avenue in downtown Canmore), where the tour will begin, 15 minutes early. From here, group members will travel on their own to the trail head. This 2.5-hour long hike will be led at a relaxed walking pace and with plenty of stops to learn about Indigenous plant uses. The terrain uses well-established trails; the tour is rated easy.
ABOUT YOUR GUIDE
Mahikan Trails is an Indigenous eco-tourism company that provides guided walks and workshops operated by Brenda Holder and her son Jordan Ede.
Ede has been giving tours with Mahikan Trails for the past 20 years, and his connection to the land will be obvious from your first steps onto the trail. He has a story for seemingly every plant we walk past, from buffaloberries (a key food source for bears, who will eat as many as 200,000 per day) to spruce trees (“A pharmacy, hardware store and grocery store all in one!”). Some of Ede’s knowledge of the Bow Valley comes from his professional life, but mostly this is information that his family has been using for generations. When Ede woke up in the middle of the night with a painful toothache, his mom Brenda treated it with the same propolis—a resin-like substance made by bees from poplar buds—that was in turn passed down to her.