12 Mile Coulee Natural Environment Park is a unique natural area in Calgary's northwest that provides ample opportunity for hiking, cycling, walking and running.
Over the past few years, work on the trail system in 12 Mile Coulee has been underway. These plans follow the recommendations of the 12 Mile Coulee management plan. These improvements to the park are intended to lessen the impact of park visitors on wildlife, native vegetation and the riparian corridor. Planning and construction activities focus on the following work:
- Informal non-designated routes in the east portion of 12 Mile Coulee have been closed.
- Trail rehabilitation will take place over the next few years in a phased approach.
- New trails will be built that will form a network and are in environmentally desirable locations.
As work progresses on these initiatives, please help us by avoiding trails that are being reclaimed. Native species are being planted and these are sensitive to trampling.
Background of the project
The park is characterized by its distinctive escarpment and coulee, the creek that runs along the base of the coulee, as well as the park's various knoll formations and depressions. Calgarians value the park for its wildlife and native vegetation diversity, archaeological significance, as well as its recreational opportunities and breathtaking scenery. For more information, find out about the 12 Mile Coulee Park Vegetation & Wildlife and 12 Mile Coulee Park Vegetation Communities.
About the management plan
The 12 Mile Coulee Management Plan was created with public and stakeholder input. The goal of the draft is to is to "provide overall direction for the protection, development, and maintenance of 12 Mile Coulee, in order to perpetuate the natural character of the landscape while providing compatible, quality recreational opportunities". One recommendation in the plan was to install wood bridges over the designated creek crossings to complete the designated trail system and keep the creek and surrounding vegetation healthier.
However, due to budget limitations and in keeping with the character of the natural area, naturalized creek crossings were installed instead of wood bridges. These creek crossings were made primarily of river rock and will allow pedestrians and cyclists to cross the creek while protecting the creek’s beds and banks from erosion and deterioration. The high rainfall event accompanied by the June 2013 floods washed away these crossings. Work is underway to determine the best course of action to replace these crossings. Stay tuned for updates.
If you have any questions, please contact 311.