Kananaskis Country Closed This Summer? Plus: A Call to Action in Helping out John Marriott

For those of you venturing into Alberta this year, be aware that Kananaskis Country just west of Calgary, home of one of the premiere drives in the Canadian Rockies, will likely be closed all summer due to bridge washouts. Right now both highway 66 and Highway 40 into Kananaskis are completely closed – for updates please visit this site. To see a complete list of the damage done please download this PDF.

Darwin and I were planning on making a new eGuide this summer covering the Kananaskis region, but with all the campgrounds closed….we have nowhere to camp but our driveway!

Darwin, Samantha and Brando camping at home!

Darwin, Samantha and Brando camping at home!

We’re being silly, of course. What we’ve suffered is a tiny irritant compared to what so many Albertans have lost. Close to home for us is the situation of one of our oopoomoo eBook authors: John Marriott almost lost his house and is spending all his time and money trying to get his home back to normal. To see the incredible footage of what happened to John’s home, go to John’s You Tube page.

For a little background as to how John, Darwin and I roll, check out a video we made for our 2010 SNAP! Photography Seminar:

We know not being able to complete our Kananaskis book this summer is a pretty damn small inconvenience compared to what so many Albertans have suffered. We’re proud and humbled by the hours and efforts donated by so many in helping out. As a small gesture, we would like to dedicate this blog post to helping out John and his lovely wife Jennifer in their efforts to rebuild in Canmore. From today until July 31, 2013, we will donate our publisher’s percentage to John on all sales of his amazing oopoomoo eBook, Icefields Parkway: Wildlife Edition.   The cost of the eBook is only $10. We will be collecting no proceeds on sales for ourselves — please share with friends and family to help John and Jennifer get back into their home! Every little bit counts.


About the Author

Photographing the incredible beauty of natural things, filming quirky videos, trying new foods with unpronounceable names, curling up with a good book, sharing ideas on how to live lighter on the Earth...these are a few of my favourite things!


  1. Kerry
    June 27, 2013

    What devastation… Thank god for the unbreakable spirit of Albertans – It’ll pull us all through!! Great idea you guys.

  2. Ray
    June 27, 2013

    So sorry to learn of John’s loss.

    I am curious about your Outback trailer. What kind of photographer specific modifications did you have made or made yourself?

    Thanks for any information you can provide.


    • Darwin Wiggett
      June 27, 2013

      We have made no photo specific modifications unless a wet bar, wine cellar and indoor hot tub are considered essential additions for photography ;-)

  3. Kirill Alemaskin
    June 27, 2013

    Hi Darwin,

    I’d like to make a donation to support John and his renovation. Is there a direct way to transfer John a small amount? And I am buying the book right away…


    • Samantha
      June 27, 2013

      Hi Kirill,

      It’s best to contact John directly if you wish to support him outside of buying the eBook (and thank you for that)…his website is wildernessprints.com or contact him on facebook as he is quite active there.

  4. Kirill Alemaskin
    June 27, 2013

    Thank you Samantha.

  5. Aruna
    June 28, 2013

    I am watching this devastation from Ottawa, and feel so sad about what you guys are going through. My heart is broken thinking about all and the changes to the landscape. I lived and studied in Alberta, Canadian Rockies being my favourite place on earth and I left my heart there when I moved out east. I will do whatever I can to help, and plan on doing the Brazeau Loop end of August.

    • Darwin Wiggett
      June 28, 2013

      Thanks Aruna and you photos from the rockies are exquisite!

    • Aruna
      July 5, 2013

      Thank you Darwin. You have been a major inspiration of mine for all these years. My first backpacking trip for Berg Lake was after a trip report by you and Samantha.

  6. Sid
    June 28, 2013

    Watching our beautiful province take a beating has been heartbreaking to say the least. I’m just thankful we are a bunch of tough ol’ souls who will not allow tragedy to define us.

    I have purchased this ebook (fantastic, btw) long ago, or I would do so now, but I’ll pass the word. Best of luck to John, his wife and all other Albertans affected by the floods.

    Oh, if anyone needs a taste of what Alberta has to offer, don’t forget to check out Travel Alberta’s Remember to Breathe series on YouTube … simply the best. :)

    Cheers for the great article, folks. Love love the red trailer. Yeah!

  7. Noreen
    July 1, 2013

    If you want to get out of Cochrane..give us a call…… still a spot by the creek to camp…quite primitive & gallons of bug spray required! Cows have left home for the summer.so only old shit! Plus a few deer & moose wander by.
    WE have an outdoor semi warm you can use…on a day like today…it’s spa day at the J.P. Creek.

  8. Tom
    July 3, 2013

    Is that your trailer? It looks awesome… I love it! Did you just get it recently? I’d love to see the interior of it too.

    Too bad about all of the damage in southern Alberta and about John’s home in Canmore. The images and videos I saw on the television and the internet were unbelievable!
    Kananaskis too is one of my favorite places in the world. As a child I attended a summer camp at Pocaterra for a couple weeks every summer and then when I was older, I would volunteer at the camp. The good thing I guess is that the area and the wildlife will get a little break from all the people. :)

  9. Gilles C.
    July 5, 2013

    Very happy to give you my little contribution….
    We’ve been once to Canada (British Columbia) and fell in love with your magnificient country. Life can be tough there apparently.

    I intended to buy this book sometime in the future so it does not make much difference to buy it now. I hope John and his wife will be able soon to have a new home.

    All the best.

    Gilles (from France)