The source of the Bow River is the Bow Glacier. The Bow Glacier is a smaller part of the larger Wapta Icefield. Flowing out from this source into Bow Lake in the Canadian Rockies, the Bow River continues along its journey east until it unites with other tributaries to form the South Saskatchewan River. The Bow River passes through several towns in its journey toward Lake Winnipeg and the Nelson River, one of them being Calgary.
The Bow Rivers water is used for drinking, irrigation and hydroelectric power. It is also a wonderful natural area which is home to many types of wildlife, and is especially prized by fisherman and boating enthusiasts. Bow Falls is found near the town of Banff, and the Bow Valley Provincial Park was created in Bow Valley. The golf course at the Banff Springs Hotel can boast that the Bow River comes meandering through it to the right side of the 8th and 14th holes.
Fishing is a much loved activity on the Bow River. All year long both fly and spinner fishermen share the waters of the Bow River. Famous for its population of brown and rainbow trout, the Bow River attracts some of the most serious anglers from all over the world. The trout in the Bow River have an exceedingly good growth rate, one of the best trout growth rates in just about any river system in the world. It is not unusual for 4-5 year-old trout to grow to 21 inches long, and the Bow River is full of trout that size and longer.