Nearly 1,000 people took part Saturday in the 23rd annual Climb and Run for Wilderness at the Calgary Tower.

The event, put on each year to benefit Wild Alberta, drew hundreds of people determined to climb the 802 stairs of the tower. In all, participants have raised $100,000 and counting for wilderness protection in Alberta.

"We are always surprised and encouraged by the ingenuity and enthusiasm of our climbers who dress up, celebrate special occasions on the stairs, test their personal resolve and just have a great time realizing and celebrating how fortunate we are to live where we do," said Christyann Olson, executive director of Alberta Wilderness Association, the organization behind the event.

Participants included 15 elite athletes competing as part of the World Federation of Great Towers Towerrunning Challenge 2014, babies in backpacks, families, MLA David Swann and a 97-year-old long time climb supporter, Richard Guy.

Over the course of the day, participants climbed the stairs a total of 2,150 times.