Explore ‘Nightrise’ an immersive experience on the summit of Sulphur Mountain this Winter

Get ready to experience the earth, the night sky, and mountain air like never before in the midst of the Rocky Mountains.

By Kristy Archibald | December 2, 2021 |12:43 am

The ‘Nightrise’ exhibit on top of Sulphur Mountain.

Photo: Kristy Archibald // Calgary Citizen

Step onto the Gondola, close your eyes, open your senses, and breathe in the beginning sights and sounds of ‘Nightrise’ at the Banff Gondola. 

On your journey up Sulphur Mountain, you’re introduced to the exhibit by listening to the stories incorporated with elements of the Nakoda language through poetry and spoken word. Many of which prompt you to take a moment to pause, take in the darkness and alpine scenery around you, and self-reflect — “What if we could listen to the view.” 

📸 Kristy Archibald // Calgary Citizen

Upon arrival at the summit, you’re immediately transported into an immersive world filled with vivid technicolour lights, song, bonfires, and propelling projections. Each element is intentionally coordinated to inspire you with the night sky and take you beyond nature in a multi-sensory winter experience. 

As a collaboration between Montreal’s Moment Factory and the Stoney Nakoda Nation, they created four exhibits coined the “Four Wonders” — Cosmic Rays, Diamond Dust, Alpenglow and Frosted Waves — which take you on an interactive journey through the visitors centre and out onto the observation deck. Each exhibit has its own unique set of twinkling lights, moving patterns, and soft sounds that force your imagination to listen to the crisp mountain air. 

📸 Kristy Archibald // Calgary Citizen

Throughout the experience, you’ll discover projected quotes and sayings that once again encourage self reflection, such as ‘The sky’s not the limit’ and ‘Slow to the speed of snow.’ Woven in, are words native to the Stoney Nakoda, that pay homage to their story and keep their language and culture alive. 

“This experience provides an opportunity for guests to deepen their knowledge of the historical impact and cultural significance the Stoney Nakoda Nation has held in the town of Banff and beyond. By telling a story in such a visual and sensory way, this project gives the Stoney Nation the opportunity to tell our story through the footprints of our ancestors and the traditional ties we hold to these lands,” said Kirsten Ryder, Training & Development Director, Stoney Nakoda Nation.

📸 Kristy Archibald // Calgary Citizen

Be prepared to set aside all of your expectations as you take a ride through the Rocky Mountains into a snowy winter wonderland, boasting unmissable views as far as the eye can see. Let the earth, shimmering snow, and crystallized icicles speak to you — Wapa, wa thmûn, wapa tâktâga — from the ‘Diamond Dust’ exhibit, demonstrates the many words for snow in Stoney Nakoda. 

Nightrise opens on Dec. 2, 2021, and runs at the summit of Sulphur Mountain until March 12, 2022. To learn more and book your ticket to become one with nature visit their website

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Kristy Archibald

Contributor at Calgary Citizen

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