The Banff Gondola is running a new nighttime sensory experience called Nightrise at the peak of Sulphur Mountain. With the glowing lights of the town Banff below, the frosty peak is bathed in an interactive audio and light display that pays tribute to the stories and history of Stoney Nakoda Nation.

Here is a peek into what Nightrise looks like at the top of Sulphur Mountain this winter:

There are many layers for you to expect at the Nightrise experience.

You can relax in bean bags from a viewing deck staring into the stars and listening to indigenous voices, you can play with the interactive light displays outside, you can wander through a glowing forest, sit by a fireplace, and just soak up the wonderful surroundings taking pause to remember the stories of the people who first lived here.

When you get to the top, remember the temperature can be 10 degrees colder than the town, so be prepared with warm hats, boots, and coats.

Our night was very windy with temperatures near -15 Celsius, there will be nights where it’s colder, but there is a chance to warm up with hot chocolate, and enjoy a meal at Northern Lights (a delicious buffet restaurant) or Sky Bistro (a more formal dining room).

Nightrise was created by Moment Factory in partnership with Banff Jasper Collection by Pursuit and the Stoney Nakoda Nation. You are fully immersed right from the gondola ride up as a soundtrack plays explaining the history of the area, sharing indigenous names for the stars, the mountains, and the town of Banff.

This was a project to forward reconciliation. The Stoney Nakoda people were influential guides for early settlers, sharing their knowledge and trails through the Rocky Mountains. Kirsten Ryder, the training and development director with Stoney Nakoda Nation, says the Stoney are now represented at the Banff Gondola through song and their language.

“We hope that anywhere that non-Indigenous people visit, we hope that they can recognize that there have been Indigenous peoples in that territory for a very long time and start to recognize that and maybe want to even learn more about us.”

Nightrise tickets can be bought to include dinner or just the experience, and it runs until March 12, 2022.

Charlie and I attended as guests of Banff Jasper Collection by Pursuit.

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