Mountain Nature and Culture Podcast

This podcast explores the natural and human history of the Canadian Rockies as well as its attractions and culture. We'll look at the ecology and wildlife as well as the unique plants and birds that make the Canadian Rockies home. Looking back through our history we will share the stories behind the scenery. This is the place for all things Rockies.

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This podcast explores the natural and human history of the Canadian Rockies as well as its attractions and culture. We'll look at the ecology and wildlife as well as the unique plants and birds that make the Canadian Rockies home. Looking back through our history we will share the stories behind the scenery. This is the place for all things Rockies.
🇬🇧 English
last modified
2019-07-28 23:57
last episode published
2019-06-13 04:43
publication frequency
13.35 days
Ward Cameron author   owner  
Number of Episodes
Detail page
Society & Culture Science & Medicine Sports & Recreation Natural Sciences History Outdoor



Date Thumb Title & Description Contributors

Overtourism in Canada's Mountain National Parks

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Conserving caribou by blaming carnivores and ancient human footprints lead the way to a new coastal migration theory

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Season of the crocus, earlier blooming is stressing bird populations and early berries for bears may not be a good thing.

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Examining a new Fire Management Plan for Banff, Yoho, and Kootenay National Parks and Game of Thrones connections in western Canada

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Wolverines in the mountain west, and tick season is upon us

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New report shows Canada warming up twice as fast as most of the world, a look a the biggest, the cuddliest, and the most frightening T. Rex's, and the day the world ended for the dinosaurs.

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Grizzly bears emerge from their winter dens, and Montana's Glacier National Park is losing its glaciers


Keepiing Alberta Rat Free, and how adding one non-native fish to Yellowstone caused a food web to collapse

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Scientific mysteries around ancient pictographs in Grotto Canyon, and how winters with lower snowpacks will effect local wildlife.

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072 Saying goodbye to the father of Global warming, Canmore's Nuclear Bunker, New Train Service to the Mountains, and watching for the bears to emerge

This week we say goodbye to Wallace Smith Broeker, the groundbreaking climatologist that coined the term "global warming'. I also look at a cold war bunker near Canmore, Alberta that forms a stark reminder of a more dangerous time in our history. A pro...

Smoke melts glaciers, and winter wildlife survival strategies

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Polar bears and climate change denial, Alberta's mountains see the highest temperature increases, and did European contact in the New World cause the Little Ice Age

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Looking at why elk keep their antlers througout the winter, and forest fires in California and British Columbia

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Ward Cameron author

Fire ecology in western Canada with fire expert Cliff White.

This is a special episode that I wanted to get out right away. It's an important talk about the fire situation in western Canada, but more importantly, what we can do in townsites like Banff, Canmore, and Jasper…and with that said, let's get to it. Thi...

Mapping the Expansion of Coyotes, Reintroduced Bison Test Their Boundaries, and Time to Stop Making Rock Sculptures

Mapping the Expansion of Coyote Range across the Continent In the mountain west, we simply accept the presence of coyotes on the landscape. They're simply a part of the mountain environment that we call home.  For many places though, that isn't the cas...
Ward Cameron author

066 Finally, free roaming bison in Banff, and bear safety during buffaloberry season.

Parks Canada has just announced that it has opened the gates and finally allowed its growing herd of wild bison out of their enclosure and, for the first time, letting them wander somewhat freely within the park, at least within a 1,200 sq km release z...

The buffaloberries are back, and a new report on Coexisting with Wildlife in the Bow Valley


The story of Crowfoot wraps up, and new decisions on development in the Bow Valley

In this episode, I wrap up the story of Blackfoot Chief Crowfoot as he experiences life under Canada's Treaty 7. I also look at the implications of some recent government and court decisions regarding development in the Bow Valley. For the complete sho...

New Reviews, Crowfoot gets to know the Mounties, and the secret lives of the Yellow Ladyslipper Orchid

A New Review of the Podcast Before I reprise the story of Crowfoot, I wanted to give a shout out to an iTunes listener with the screen name Jul121314 in the U.S. for the kind review. The review is titled "Great Storytelling". They continue saying: "Lov...

062 The Life of Chief Crowfoot of the Blackfoot, and bears along the train tracks

Crowfoot The First Nations of the plains were a diverse and powerful collection of Tribes that were often at war with one another. Wars over territory, the best hunting areas, the theft of horses, and many other grievances kept the borders of various n...

Sulphur Storms, Mismatched Colours, and Famous Filming Locations

Sulphur Storms This past week has marked the start of pollen season in the mountain west. The white spruce, in particular, released vast amounts of yellowish-green pollen, coating every car, patio set, pond, and puddle. The railings alongside trails an...

Tricking bumblebees and a renewed focus on ecological integrity in Canada's national parks

Orchids tricking Bumblebees Wandering trails around the Bow River valley, it seems like every day there are new and exciting changes taking place. The leaves have begun to emerge and the early season blooms are adding a splash of colour to the meadows ...

Local photographers, natural orchestras, Whirling disease, bear updates, and natural economics

Local Photographers If you're a regular listener, you'll already know that I am both a photographer and author. It was through both of these rolls that I'm feeling very sad today to hear of the passing of Doug Leighton. Doug was a visionary photographe...

Time to clean up the bird feeders, bobcats be coming, and the bears are back

Time to take down your bird feeders Now that spring is, well, technically upon us. It's time to take down your bird feeders. Communities like Banff and Jasper, located within the national parks, already ban bird feeders. While Canmore is outside of the...

New Burgess fossils, and red fox return to the Rockies, episode 57 of the Mountain Nature and Culture Podcast

Welcome to episode 57 of the Mountain Nature and Culture Podcast, I'm your host, Ward Cameron and I'm recording this on April 1, 2018. This week I look at three amazing fossils that are teaching palaeontologists about the evolution of some of the world...

New Super Berry, what's in a name, and ecological trap

So, what would you be willing to endure to make it home for Christmas In these modern times? These days trips home usually involve expensive plane fares or long drives on winter roads made safer by winter tires, interior heaters, and modern clothing. W...
Ward Cameron author

Advice from Edward Abbey, bison updates, and woodpecker headaches

Edward Abbey Quote I stumbled upon a quotation recently from the great ecological activist Edward Abbey. It was shared on Facebook by Kevin Van Tighem, a former Banff National Park Superintendent. He was talking about how tiring it can be to be a publi...

Frozen feet at Christmas, new wolf pack forming, 10 New Year Resolutions, and what determines success in Grizzly translocations

Home for Christmas - Tom Wilson has a close call So, what would you be willing to endure to make it home for Christmas In these modern times? These days trips home usually involve expensive plane fares or long drives on winter roads made safer by winte...

David Thompson heads west, and do mountain pine beetles increase the risk of forest fires?

David Thompson heads west Last week, I ended the story of David Thompson with his leaving the employment of the Hudson's Bay Company, and joining the rival Northwest Company. As Thompson began his journey to the west, he described the landscape of the ...
Ward Cameron author

David Thompson quits the Hudson's Bay Company, and what's up with climate science deniers?

David Thompson Part 2 Last week I talked about David Thompson's arrival in Canada and some of his adventures during the earliest part of his long career in Canada. They were just the start of a 40+ year adventure across the wilderness of this nation an...
Ward Cameron author

Melting Glaciers, and David Thompson's Legacy Begins

Melting Mountain Glaciers For many years it has been believed that Canada's western mountain glaciers, also known as the Cordilleran Ice Sheet, melted some 12.5 thousand years ago. A new study published in the Journal Nature by researcher Brian Menouno...

New frontiers for wildlife crossings, and the scourge of scurvy

Welcome to Episode 50 of the Mountain Nature and Culture Podcast. I'm your host, Ward Cameron and I'm recording this on November 25, 2017. I can't believe this is actually episode 50. When I started this project almost a year and a half ago, I'm not su...

A look at polar bear ecology, cougars that aren't solitary and does shooting problem bears work

In this episode I look at some of the reasons so many people flock to Churchill every year to see polar bears. I also look at a new research study that has shown that cougars are not nearly as solitary as biologists once believed. Finally, I examine a ...

Pikas struggling with warming climates, Neanderthal medicine, and mining gravel river beds

Pika in a time of Climate Change The Rocky Mountains are known around the world as a great place to spot wildlife.  Although most visitors to the area are looking for iconic animals like elk, bighorn sheep and bears, some of our tinier residents can be...

Canada's 150th birthday and its effects on visitation to the Mountain Parks an Ode to Bear 148, and interviews with several candidates.

Canada 150 Visitation Unless you've been living under a rock this past year, you know that 2017 represents the 150th birthday of Canada. As a nation, we were born just 150 years ago on July 1, 1867. Now this wasn't the Canada we know today, but a teeny...

Bears and Trains and the Cariboo Goldrush becomes a Bonanza

Look Out Bears, There's a Train Coming In episode 34 I talked about the incredible success that Banff National Park has had in terms of reducing the number of animals, such as grizzly bears, that are being killed along our highways. The system of over ...

Wolves help grizzlies by killing elk, the Trans Canada Trail is complete, the Jasper to Columbia Icefields trail falls into limbo and gold rushes in British Columbia

Wolves are a grizzlies best friend - at least in Yellowstone Yellowstone has become a world renowned laboratory for what can happen when long absent carnivores are returned to the landscape. For decades across North America, predators were seen as the ...

Flying giraffes and loving the mountains to death

Flying Dinosaurs as Tall as Giraffes If you're a regular listener of this podcast, then you know that I love dinosaurs. Living in Alberta is the perfect mix because we have one of the best landscapes for finding dino remains and there are new discoveri...
Ward Cameron author

Save a caribou, kill a moose, the burgess shales and fire updates on the mountain west

Can Killing Moose help Caribou? A recent study conducted by researchers in British Columbia's Columbia Mountain range is raising eyebrows for its novel approach to trying to help struggling caribou populations in several endangered herds throughout sev...

Grizzlies choose berries over salmon, and the Canadian Last Spike

This week I look at an amazing report from Alaska that shows that given the choice, salmon may not be a grizzlies first choice for dinner. I also bring to a close, the story of the building of Canada's transcontinental railway..and with that said, let'...

Flying Squirrels, Forest Fire Records and Van Horne Rescues the CPR

This week I take a look at one of our most secretive animals, the northern flying squirrel. It also looks like B.C. has broken a record this summer for the worst fire season on record. Finally, I'll share the story of the Greatest Canadian Railroader, ...

Pine beetles bring fire fears and Major A.B. Rogers surveys through the western Mountains, episode 040 of the Mountain Nature and Culture Podcast

Welcome to episode 40 of the Mountain Nature and Culture Podcast. I'm your host, Ward Cameron, and I record this on August 16, 2017, we've finally received a bit of rain in the Canadian Rockies. Every drop is a gift at this point and hopefully it will ...

The bear bites back and Hells Bells Rogers. Episode 39 of the Mountain Nature and Culture Podcast.

The Bears Bite Back I hate it when the inevitable happens! We've been talking for weeks about people entering closed areas during the most critical time of the year for black and grizzly bears to put on fat for the winter months. I've witnessed numerou...

Farewell to Grizzly 148, Walter Moberly's Surveys, Solar Eclipses and Bird-eating Deer

Ode to Grizzly 148 This has been a heartbreaking week as bear 148, the beloved daughter of Banff's most famous bear 66, was translocated far away from her home territory of Banff and Canmore all the way north to Kakwa Provincial Park, located to the we...

Buffaloberry primer, ancient archaeological site, a national dream begins, golden eagle migrations, and B.C. decides to privatize wildlife management

Ancient archaeological Site found on the Coast For as long as I can remember, archaeologists have been talking about the ice free corridor that ran from Alaska, across the Bering Strait to Russia and all the way past Calgary. We were told that this was...
Ward Cameron author

036 Expanding Forest Fires, Bear 148 Gets One More Chance and No National Bird for Caanda

Forest Fires Spreading across British Columbia and now threaten parts of Alberta When I wrote last week's fire focused episode, little did I know that my own community of Canmore would be smelly and smoky this week as fires continue to spread and the n...

Flames across the border

Forest Fires in B.C. Recent forest fires in British Columbia have once again raised the horror of forest fires to the top of the news feeds. The hot dry weather that has been a constant companion for the past few weeks has allowed the number of fires t...

Bear Spray containers, Wildlife overpasses, Bear 148 in trouble, new bear research methods and Waterton Park's namesake

Last week I spoke with Lyndsay Kearns about a canister of bear spray that exploded in her car. It was a horrible situation and the damage to her car was significant. If you'd like to hear her interview, check out Du...

033 Bulletproof elk, exploding bear spray and drones in the high country

Story 1 - Bulletproof Elk A recent study published in the journal PLOS One has brought some amazing insights into the behaviour of female elk in the Rocky Mountains. The study took place in southwestern Alberta and southeastern British Columbia. It loo...

032 Microburst Mayhem and Climate Science in Mountain Landscapes

Microburst Mayhem On the evening of June 8, I was getting ready to head out to the climate change presentation that I'll play during the second portion of this episode, and wouldn't you know it, minutes before I left the house, an extremely severe stor...