September 2011

A place that’s always been on my radar, but I never made it to, is Reader Rock Garden. That is until recently, when we found ourselves with a free afternoon and looking for something to fill it.

It turned out to be a great place to spend a little time.

Bench in Reader Rock Garden

The first thing that struck me was the location. For over a decade, I lived in Mission and I walked and drove by this place for years. I never would have guessed that one block off Macleod Trail, a stone’s throw from the Stampede Grounds and directly parallel to a cemetery… this beautiful park existed.

Ben and Mom at Reader Rock Garden

Sitting on the stone steps

The park is filled with rock pathways and bridges, benches and a gazebo, and beautiful flowers and plants and vegetation. A lot of things you wouldn’t expect would grow in Calgary, you can see in full bloom here. The colors and the smells were great. I found the entire experience peaceful and relaxing.  For more on the history of the Reader Rock Garden, the City of Calgary has a great page here.

If you are preschool aged, I would imagine you might feel as though you’re in the middle of a mini-enchanted forest. The pathways are bumpy and layered in stonework and with all the majestic trees and branches swaying overhead, it feels like you’re in the middle of a fairy-tale.

Ben walking under trees at Reader Rock Garden

A mini enchanted forest

We spent about an hour just walking around exploring the grounds and learning about the history of the place. The lovely old house that inhabits the garden also houses a little café. From everyone we’ve talked to that’s been, we hear it’s very cozy and quaint. Unfortunately on the day we went, the café was closed, which only gives me more incentive to go back.

We brought along our stroller for the baby and although it was a little bumpy, we did managed to get around fine. You are a little restricted when you do have one, so I would suggest if your child isn’t walking yet, you might want to bring along a carrier of some kind.

All my boys enjoying Reader Rock Garden

All my boys enjoying Reader Rock Garden

Fall is my favorite season so I would love to go back soon and experience the garden with all the autumn colors and smells and feel. If you have a couple hours to spare over the next little while, take a stroll through Reader Rock Garden. It’ll do your soul some good.