Are you planning a move to Alberta but looking for a quiet location away from the big cities? If so, you may be interested in living in Pincher Creek, a small town in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains.
Although not as well known as the popular Calgary commuter towns of Okotoks and Cochrane or the incredibly picturesque mountain towns of Banff, Canmore and Jasper, Pincher Creek, Alberta, offers many advantages for those wishing to move to Alberta, Canada.
Pincher Creek is situated in a beautiful valley with a stunning mountain backdrop. It is an excellent location for outdoor enthusiasts and offers a wide range of summer and winter recreational activities.
This article will give you all the key information you need about living in Pincher Creek. In addition, we will provide you with an unbiased view of the pros and cons of living in Pincher Creek to help you decide whether it is the place for you.
Living In Pincher Creek – The Facts
For anyone interested in living in Pincher Creek, here are a few key facts about this small prairie town.
Where Is Pincher Creek?
Pincher Creek lies in southern Alberta, directly east of the Rocky Mountains and around 50km from the popular Waterton Lake. The closest sizeable community is Lethbridge, 100km to the east, with a population close to 100,000.
Calgary is a little over 2 hours away to the north and has the closest international airport to Pincher Creek. Heading south, it will take you around an hour to get to the US border.
What Is The Population Of Pincher Creek in 2023?
The population of Pincher Creek in 2023 is 3,428, according to the latest Alberta provincial data.
The town has seen very little change in recent years. The latest federal census data (released in 2022) showed a population of 3,622, representing a reduction in the population of Pincher Creek of 0.5% between 2016 and 2021.
The average age of the population is 44.2, around 2 years higher than the national average of 41.9. The majority of those living in Pincher Creek are white and English-speaking. Just 7% are classed as visible minorities, and the largest minority group is Filipino (around 50%).
What Is The Pincher Creek Weather Like?
Most of Canada experiences cold, harsh winters with pleasant, moderately hot summers, and Alberta is no different. However, the good news is that with 2,300 hours of sunshine in the south annually and 1900 hours in the north, it is Canada’s sunniest province.
Pincher Creek has an average January low of -10 deg C and an average July high of 23 deg C. Annual precipitation is around 700mm, which is pretty typical of Alberta.
The town is known for being one of the windiest in Alberta, and in winter, it benefits from frequent Chinook winds. These warm winds blow from the Rocky Mountains and can cause dramatic increases in temperature within a few hours.
What Is The Cost of Living Like In Pincher Creek?
Most Albertans have a high disposable income compared to other provinces of Canada. Income tax and sales tax are lower than in many provinces. Sales tax is just 5%, compared to 12% in BC, 13% in Ontario, and 15% in Nova Scotia.
Overall, Pincher Creek is a relatively cheap place to live, with property prices almost half the provincial average. Unlike many other small towns, Pincher Creek also has a handful of big box stores, such as Walmart and The Brick.
What Is The Pincher Creek Economy Based On?
Historically Pincher Creek’s economy was built on agriculture and natural resource industries such as forestry. The area is also a great source of wind energy, and this industry has become increasingly important over the past 20-30 years.
The town’s proximity to Waterton Lake National Park means that it is also a popular tourist location, and the town has a thriving tourist industry.
Is Pincher Creek A Safe Place To Live?
Canada is one of the safest countries in the world to live in. Crime rates are low, and the country always features near the top of the annual Global Peace Index rankings.
Within Canada, Quebec, Ontario, and the Maritime provinces have the lowest crime rates, while rates are highest in the territories.
Alberta’s crime rates are higher than national averages but still low relative to most other developed countries. Crime rates are also low in Pincher Creek, especially violent crime rates, which are lower than provincial and national averages.
Are You Planning A Move To Canada?
Are you wondering whether to make the move and have endless questions?
We have the answers to these and many more questions.
What Are The Schools In Pincher Creek Like?
Canada has a strong and publicly-funded education system, which consistently ranks as one of the best in the world. The provinces are responsible for administering education, and the Alberta education system is considered one of the best in Canada.
In addition, the town also has a public Catholic School. St Michael’s School covers kindergarten to grade 12 and offers a French immersion up to grade 6.
What Is The Healthcare In Pincher Creek Like?
Canada has an excellent publicly-funded healthcare system that covers “medically necessary” care. Generally, hospital and doctor visits are covered, while other types of care, such as dental, optical, and prescriptions, are funded for certain groups of people.
In Canada, the provinces are responsible for administering healthcare, so anyone living in Pincher Creek would be covered through Alberta Health Services.
Pincher Creek has a small hospital offering 24/7 emergency care. It also has a number of family doctors. However, you should be aware that there is currently a shortage of family doctors in Alberta, and it can be difficult to find clinics taking on new patients.
This is especially true of the smaller towns and cities. However, you can find out about doctors accepting patients in any particular area using Alberta Health’s online tool.
Pros And Cons Of Living In Pincher Creek
The pros and cons of living in Pincher Creek will vary from person to person; for example, the relatively isolated location may be ideal for some people but a disadvantage for others. But, whatever you are looking for, these are some key factors to consider.
Pros Of Living In Pincher Creek
- Sunny climate
- Beautiful location
- Close to the Rocky Mountains
- Access to a ski hill
- Peaceful rural location
- Low taxes
- Low property prices
Cons Of Living In Pincher Creek
- Windy location
If you are interested in checking out other small towns in Alberta, you may be interested in our article on the 16 Best Small Towns In Alberta To Live In 2023.