News / Edmonton

Edmonton hosting first Canadian Mountain Festival

Events kick off Sunday, continue all week at the University of Alberta.

The first Canadian Mountain Festival is celebrating all things mountain.


The first Canadian Mountain Festival is celebrating all things mountain.

Whether your interest is glaciers, climbing or bison, the first annual Canadian Mountain Festival that's heading to Edmonton next week is aiming to have something for you.

“The festival is a public event, everything is open to the public, tickets are free,” said Jeff Kavanaugh, a glaciologist and associate professor at the U of A, as well as co-lead of the new Canadian Mountain Network, which is hosting the event.

The festival features talks, film screenings, art shows and even a rock-climbing workshop, with most events at the University of Alberta. Things kick off Sunday in celebration of International Mountain Day on Dec. 11.

“I’m hoping it's really broadly attended by a diverse array of people," Kavanaugh said.

The University of Alberta is currently on a mission to become a hub for research on all things mountain. The U of A Mountain Initiative started bringing experts in everything from ecology to history together back in 2011.

The Canadian Mountain Network was formed earlier this year to start sharing knowledge across the country.

Experts from different fields are all sharing their knowledge for the festival.

“The mountains strike us all with awe, we all want to be there,” Kavanaugh said. “If you love the mountains, you love them for many different reasons, so the fact that I study glaciers and a colleague of mine studies the history of mountaineering, doesn’t mean we have a different interest — we just have different areas of expertise.”

The festival will see an evening dedicated to discussion of bison returning to Banff National Park. There will also be a discussion of indigenous narratives on land connection and a climbing competition.

Most events are free, but require a ticket reserved through the website.  

More on