Troll Falls and a peek at PLPP

Before I get started, there’s lots of excellent, up-to-date information on the Kananaskis trails blog regarding trails which are open: Where to hike


Troll falls is one of the few trails open in the Ribbon creek area. As we were nearing the falls, it was obvious that a lot of work had been done to clear the trail, as there were dozens of trees which had been cut in order to make a path.

Being one of the few trails open, Troll falls was busy with hikers

Being one of the few trails open, Troll falls was busy with hikers

Marmot creek appears to have cut a deeper creek bed and has eroded the sides of its previous channel.

You can’t start out in the usual locations, however, as Ribbon creek parking lot is closed and there is construction work happening at the Stoney trailhead. You need to park on the Nakiska road where Skogan pass trail crosses it.

Marmot creek as it becomes  troll falls

Marmot creek as it becomes troll falls

We took Skogan pass, Ruthie’s, and returned on the Troll falls trail. Skogan is open only to the Ruthie’s junction. It’s about a 3.8K round trip with minimal elevation change, just a few small hills. The Troll falls trail had a short stretch of minor erosion on one of the hills.

Peter Lougheed Provincial Park(PLPP)

Bighorn sheep at the entrance to Kananaskis Lakes trail in Peter Lougheed provincial park

Bighorn sheep at the entrance to Kananaskis Lakes trail in Peter Lougheed provincial park

Update: After posting this I received this email:I read your post on Troll Falls and PLPP. I just wanted to comment that it is my understanding that they will not be taping the trail heads. Instead “cautions” will be posted at the trail heads and then you will be finding tape to warn before you reach the damaged areas.”

Also, an information bulletin from the Alberta government which was posted on Facebook states: Visitors to Peter Lougheed Provincial Park are reminded that while trails may be open there is a good chance that some may have been altered and to exercise awareness and caution while hiking.

Highway 40 opened today as far as the winter gate, so we drove a little further into K-country and had a quick look around. Apparently there is damage to many of the trails and bridges, but there was no yellow tape indicating closures. We didn’t venture down any of the trails so I didn’t see anything first-hand.

From the road, the only visible sign of significant damage was the foot bridge over Boulton creek. It was still standing, but the foundation had been eroded and the bridge was closed to foot traffic. It will be interesting to see what lies further upstream on Boulton creek and Fox creek.

Spray Lakes

Regarding the Spray Lakes road(aka Smith Dorrien), Kananaskis Public Safety reports: Smith Dorrien Highway will be open soon. At this time, its only open from the South end at Kananaskis Trail north to Engadine Lodge. Highways crews are hoping that sometime tomorrow the road will hopefully be open. Some trails such as Chester Lake area are completely wiped out and closed until they can be repaired.

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