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temporary housing suggestions in Calgary/Canmore??

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temporary housing suggestions in Calgary/Canmore??

Postby Diggler » Wed Nov 09, 2011 2:05 am

Greetings fellow climbers,

I'm considering the option of doing some ice climbing in Alberta this winter. Time scale I'm thinking of for right now is anywhere from 2 weeks to a month & a half. What would be the best places to look for temporary housing? All the housing (granted, this has been more permanent) I've found in the San Francisco-area since I've lived here (the last 10 years) has been through Craigslist, so that's what I'm familiar with. Are there other, better options in Calgary/Canada? A 1- or 2-bedroom sort of situation would probably be ideal for me & my girlfriend, but I'd be curious about other options as well. After the simple desire of a warm room(s) to come 'home' to, primary considerations would be the cost (the cheaper the better) & proximity to the climbing. Proximity to public transport & downtown (I currently don't know much about Calgary) would be great, but not as important as the things just listed. Thanks for any suggestions!
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Re: temporary housing suggestions in Calgary/Canmore??

Postby Dow Williams » Wed Nov 09, 2011 3:25 pm

The oil and gas industry has kept housing and rents in Calgary at a premium. Meanwhile the tourist industry has suffered due to the weak US dollar and economic chaos in Europe. Therefore, rents in Canmore and Banff can be had for no more than in Calgary. Add in the cost of gas and wear and tear on a vehicle for longer commutes, ignoring your time, it would actually cost you more to be based in Calgary.

Canmore is better centered for ice climbing than Banff. There are more ice climbing objectives in the Ghost Wilderness Area, not to mention better and safer conditions (avalanches) for longer periods, than in the four National Parks combined. Canmore is also closer to Kananaskis Provincial Park. Canmore is a less touristy place to reside than Banff in terms of food, groceries and social life.

VRBO.com is where you go to find individual owners trying to cover their taxes and condo fees. Developers way overbuilt the condo market in Canmore with several significant bankruptcies. Many individual condo owners bought units for investment (potential appreciation), not actuall use. They have no option but to compete for $$$ to cover their excessive property taxes and condominium fees. VRBO offers a very easy platform to negotiate. Once you type in a offer to one, it saves the offer you wrote so you can tweak it for the next. If you avoid the holiday ski season, you should easily get an affordable, furnished place for a month or longer.

Canadian Rockies Ice
Good Luck.
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Re: temporary housing suggestions in Calgary/Canmore??

Postby Baarb » Wed Nov 09, 2011 4:09 pm

Amazing info. If SP is just a website then a mountain is just a big rock.
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Re: temporary housing suggestions in Calgary/Canmore??

Postby Diggler » Wed Nov 09, 2011 9:50 pm

Thanks a lot for the detailed reply, Dow. We were actually looking at the VRBO website you recommended. We'll look more into the other things you mentioned. Any experience with the Canadian Alpine Club clubhouse or the wilderness passes/huts in the area?
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Re: temporary housing suggestions in Calgary/Canmore??

Postby Vitaliy M. » Wed Nov 09, 2011 10:09 pm

Make an igloo or a snow cave around those climbs you are planning to do. Will save you a lot of money.
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Re: temporary housing suggestions in Calgary/Canmore??

Postby Dow Williams » Thu Nov 10, 2011 12:00 am

The Alpine Club's club house in Canmore is actually quite posh. Really nice kitchen and living area. We gave it a face lift just a few years back. Problem is it is not very close to town, rather it is out where we keep our horses. In the winter you have to get in the car to go anywhere versus so many units downtown that allow you to just walk out your door for a cup of coffee or brew. The Rampart Creek Hostel is the only relevant "hut" type operation for ice climbing and gives you access to the Icefield Parkway climbs. But those climbs, including Polar Circus, are all easy day trips from Canmore as well. lake Louise has a significant hostel that gets you closer to that area. Most of the rest of the winter hut system is designed for backcountry skiing and will not help you out for ice climbing.
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Re: temporary housing suggestions in Calgary/Canmore??

Postby Vitaliy M. » Thu Nov 10, 2011 4:56 am

Dow, thank you for making such awesome pages. I just looked over your pages for ice climbs in the area, they look stunning. Already made Polar Circus my goal for next year or year after. Some great stuff!
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Re: temporary housing suggestions in Calgary/Canmore??

Postby Marmaduke » Tue Nov 15, 2011 5:34 pm

Diggler wrote:Greetings fellow climbers,

I'm considering the option of doing some ice climbing in Alberta this winter. Time scale I'm thinking of for right now is anywhere from 2 weeks to a month & a half. What would be the best places to look for temporary housing? All the housing (granted, this has been more permanent) I've found in the San Francisco-area since I've lived here (the last 10 years) has been through Craigslist, so that's what I'm familiar with. Are there other, better options in Calgary/Canada? A 1- or 2-bedroom sort of situation would probably be ideal for me & my girlfriend, but I'd be curious about other options as well. After the simple desire of a warm room(s) to come 'home' to, primary considerations would be the cost (the cheaper the better) & proximity to the climbing. Proximity to public transport & downtown (I currently don't know much about Calgary) would be great, but not as important as the things just listed. Thanks for any suggestions!


I stayed less than one mile from downtown Canmore in a nice 1 bedroom Condo. Price for the week was about $600. Here is the website: http://www.blackstonecanmore.ca/. If you are interested I will send you a "PM" with the condo owner's email as I don't have his permission to post it publically.
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