This Calgary man is on a mission to walk every street in the city

Mark Shupe is walking every street in Calgary.  (Tom Ross/CBC - image credit)
Mark Shupe is walking every street in Calgary. (Tom Ross/CBC - image credit)

Negative temperatures in the double digits won't stop Calgarian Mark Shupe from going for a walk — in fact not much will.

Since 2018 the retired accountant has been on a mission to walk every single street in the city, something that was sparked after a back injury which prevented him from running.

Shupe, who is now an author, had two heart attacks in 2020, which delayed the journey, but he said walking has kept him going.

"They've told me absolutely walking is the best thing I can do to stay alive," he said. "Hard to find a better motivator than that."

He uses a map of the city and marks off streets after he's walked them.

Tom Ross/CBC
Tom Ross/CBC

"I know the city pretty much by page of the map … you're going over to Marlborough — that's on page 33 of the map," Shupe said.

He's seen moose, owls, coyotes, deer and "an awful lot of beautiful scenery."

"Views of mountains, views of the river, different parks, wildlife, views of Nose Hill from all kinds of different directions," said Shupe.

"And then you get the superview, which is the downtown, the river and the mountains in behind … that's a beauty you get from so many different locations and I'm always looking to get that."

Lana Shupe, Mark's wife of 30 years, says she often plays the role of chauffeur, but Mark will find places they can come back to together.

"We are extremely proud of him and it's something that's become quite a family pride thing," she said.

"We have three children and they tell everybody and all of their friends say, 'oh, you've got the super coolest dad ever.'"

Shupe plans to finish his map by walking on 17th Ave. and celebrate with a pint of beer at a restaurant.

After that, he says, he's going to explore the streets that were built after his map was made.

"I probably will go back and do some of those streets."