Town of Pincher Creek, Alberta
The most extreme temperature shift recorded in Canada occurred in January 1962 when a Chinook wind roared out of The Rockies and lifted Pincher Creek's official thermometer reading from -19 degrees Celsius to +22 degrees in just one hour.
Pincher Creek was named in 1874 by a patrol of the North West Mounted Police that was surprised to find a horseshoeing tool in the stream bottom.
On the paneled office wall of Canada's pre-eminent jurist hangs a painting honouring an undulating landscape where rolling grasslands crash up against the front ranges of the Rocky Mountains. The office belongs to Canada's Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin, and the painting by Robert McInnes depicts the place of her birth and cowgirl education, Pincher Creek in Alberta SouthWest. “It’s physically a very beautiful place, with the mountains on the one hand and the prairie on the other,” McLachlin has said. “You had this sense of privilege that you were living in this very special place.”
Pincher Creek’s employment base consists of retail, agricultural services, agriculture mechanical and machinery services, oil and gas services, wind energy services, and visitor services and recreation. More broadly, Pincher Creek is a commercial service centre for surrounding farm and ranch country.
The rapid deployment of wind generation nearby – making Pincher Creek the de facto wind energy capital of Canada - has generated green-collar employment and business niches related to the construction and maintenance of towers and turbines.
As a gateway community to Waterton Lakes National Park, Pincher Creek benefits from the area's abundant opportunities to fish, hike, ride, ski, soar, and sail.