For more than 30 years, Tom Daw has operated the Crowfoot Crossing ferry near Bassano.

It's been crossing the Bow River since 1927 and this week the ferry opened for its 82nd season.

The ferry crossing takes about seven minutes and is still a vital form of transportation for people living in the area.

"It's nice when it's open so we can just run up to the Tans-Canada Highway," says Todd Munro, a local resident.

The ferry is also used by those doing business in the area but the economy could make for a slower season.

"I don't know, with the recession, what kind of a year that we'll have this year. It could be down because I think most of the oil field activity is down," says Daw.

Daw suspects his career as a ferryman will be a long one, despite the economy, because there are no plans to build a bridge across the river.