Pathways and trails

Pathways and Trails

Calgary communities, parks and natural areas are connected by an extensive network of multi-use pathways available for all Calgarians to enjoy, whether for walking, running, in-line skating or cycling. In fact, Calgary has the most extensive urban pathway and bikeway network in North America. The City maintains approximately 1000 km of regional pathways and 96 km of trails.

The City is responsible for the planning, design, construction, maintenance and programming of Calgary's multi-use pathway system. Calgary's pathways connect along the Bow and Elbow Rivers, Fish Creek Provincial Park, Nose Creek, West Nose Creek, the Western Irrigation District Canal and the perimeter of Glenmore Reservoir. There’s another 290 km of on-street bikeways and cycle tracks. The Rotary/Mattamy Greenway is a 138 km pathway that loops around the city with many special amenities along the way.

All pathways and trails are for non-motorized use with the exception of powered wheelchairs.

  • A regional pathway is part of the city-wide network, and is typically paved with asphalt and located off-street.
  • A local pathway provides secondary routes within communities, linking residential areas to local attractions such as neighbourhood parks, schools and other community destinations.
  • Trails are unpaved paths typically made of granular or compacted dirt.

Please note that Pathways are off-street routes, and Bikeways are on-street routes.​

Use the digital Pathway and Bikeway map to plan or explore your wheeling or walking routes. Toggle between tabs to view pathways, bikeways, and sidewalks receiving City snow clearing or areas of the pathway network that have closures and detours.

Using our pathways

To ensure everyone who uses our pathways has a safe, enjoyable experience, please review the rules, legal regulations and etiquette guidelines before heading out.

  • Respect the posted speed limit of either 20 km/hour or as posted, depending on location
  • Signal audibly when passing
  • Keep to the right and yield to the right-of-way
  • Only electric recreational vehicles listed on the web​ are permitted on the pathways, such as electric assisted bicycles
  • Power on demand electric or gas bicycles are not allowed on pathways
  • Be considerate to other pathway users
  • Be a responsible pet owner; maintain control and clean up after your pet

At any time of year, we recommend checking for pathway closures on the Pathways and Bikeways mobile application or online before you start your journey.​​​

To report inappropriate activities (i.e. vandalism) or safety concerns contact 311​.

Network map

The Pathways and Bikeways Map is now available in three formats. Pick the one that’s right for you:

  • Mobile Application – we've updated the free Pathways and Bikeways App and made it available for both iPhone and Android devices, based on feedback from our first release. It includes real-time information on pathway closures and detours, safety rules and regulations, a reporting feature to alert 311 of any pathway concerns, links to helpful information such as Parks ​events, Park 'n' Bike locations and cycling educational videos, social media feeds and more. Get it to go today! Download: iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad - Android
  • Online – If you prefer, use the online map. It too will give you the most up-to-date routes and, by navigating through the various links, you'll discover many other tips and resources for using The Citys pathways, bikeways and downtown cycle tracks. If you're a new path user, you may want to start with one of our recommended routes.
  • Paper Copy – The third option is aprint map. Pick up the current version, printed in May 2017, at any City of Calgary Aquatic and Fitness Centres or one of our two leisure centres.

History of Calgary's pathways

In the late 1960s, Calgarians began envisioning a system of connected pathways on which they could travel throughout the city and access areas of unique natural beauty. The first completed section of the pathway was built through Confederation Park in the early 1970s. Pathways along the Bow River and Elbow River were subsequently made from crushed red shale (clinker shale from burned out coal seams). Asphalt later became the preferred material of choice because of its durability. Eventually, the red shale pathways were resurfaced with asphalt.

Today we continue to add to and improve the pathway network, addressing missing links, lifecycle repairs and safety improvem​ents.​​​​​​​

Pathway closures/detours & access/proximity ePermits and manual

-- Found under Roads ePermits --

Private contractors, consultants, utility companies, and City personnel that require a closure of a City of Calgary pathway, due to construction should refer to the manual.

Snow on our pathways

Is it snowing? To make it easier for Calgarians to use the pathway system, maintenance activities include clearing snow from approximately 400 kilometers of paved (regional) pathways, usually within 24 hours of a snowfall. Be sure to check out the latest information about snow clearing on Calgary’s pathways.

Related information