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During our first chaotic week of being in Cochrane I went on the hunt for something fun and local for the kids and I to do. We were doing laundry and I found a few local magazines and brochures. In one of the magazines was this lovely painting and write up about “The Grandfather Tree”. Im a sucker for a good nature walk so I thought it would be perfect and exactly what we would need. 


This tree really made us work for it. The first time we went we forgot our sweaters and it was getting pretty chilly, the second time we forgot our water bottles and it was a hot day out, the third time the local famers market took over and we didn’t know where we were going. Luckily for us we found a very nice local at the market who told us exactly where to go. So the fourth time around, we had sweaters, water bottles and enough snacks to last the zombie apocalypse. We set off with a vague idea of where we were going. We were told to follow the fence line to a path that would lead us to the tree.


It was a beautiful sunny day and the kids were having so much fun playing a game as we walked through the woods. The first half of the hike was beautiful birch trees, bright with the colour of autumn changing leaves. Then it went straight to a dark cold spruce forest (as soon as we approached these trees the kids froze in their tracks and didnt want to go any further – we had just watched Harry Potter and they were scared it was the dark forest). We kept walking and I kept envisioning that this path would lead to a clearing and there would stand the all mighty Grandfather Tree. So I was very surprised when out of nowhere, surrounded by little skinny spruces popped out this huge tree. The root structure is really what makes this tree so fascinatingly beautiful.

If you are ever in Cochrane I highly recommend grabbing a cup of coffee and going on a little adventure to find this (not so) little piece of history.