Map of Hinton & Athabasca River Valley. Detailed map of the highway and roads of Hinton & Athabasca River Valley

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Map of Hinton & Athabasca River Valley. Detailed map of the highway and roads of Hinton & Athabasca River Valley

Athabasca River Valley

Excellent hunting, fishing, spelunking, and horseback riding adventures abound in this little-known corner of the Rockies, where the Athabasca River slashes southwest through the foothills of the mountains. Once driven by the coal-fired railroad, this area is now prime getaway country. Explore the ghost towns of the former Coal Branch region in the east or journey up one of the most spectacular and least traveled roads in Alberta, Highway 40, or Big Horn Highway, which skirts huge pristine tracts of Willmore Wilderness Park and Jasper National Park.

Cadomin/Coal Branch Historic Area [E6-D7]

Now a ghost town, Cadomin used to be Coal Branch, one of a line of mining towns-Mercoal, Coalspur, Robb, Erith, and McLeod River-linked by coal-burning locomotives. An hour-long hike to Cadomin Cave reveals caves with 3 km of narrow passages.

Grande Cache [A1] Its name recalling the time trappers cached their furs here before trading them in Edmonton in the spring, Grande Cache became a community in the late 1960s, when coal, natural gas, and forest reserves jump-started the economy. Horseback riding, hunting, and fishing are popular outdoor activities here, the bull trout capital of Alberta. As a gateway to both Willmore Wilderness Park and William A. Switzer Provincial Park, hiking, biking, and paddling are also big. A road leads west off Hwy 40 into Rock Lake Provincial Recreation Area, where horse facilities and campgrounds make it a good staging area for riders and hikers heading into the mountains.

Hinton [C5] Skirted by ample forests, lakes and trout streams, Hinton is a prime base for anglers, hunters, paddlers, and hikers who come to explore the scenic wonders of the Athabasca River valley and the eastern slopes of the Rockies. The Natural Resources Interpretive Park focusses on the past, present, and future of forestry and mining industries. Coal mine tours to working mines lend insight into open-pit coal mining.

Miette Нот Springs [D5] Sixty kilometers east of Jasper, outdoor pools offer a soak in the hottest (the 54°C waters are cooled to 40°C first) hot springs in the Rockies. The strong sulfur aroma of the springs comes from hydrogen sulfide in the water reacting to the oxygen. A trail south of the springs takes hikers from Montane Valley to the summit in a quick and steep 2 km.

Mount Robson

Mount Robson Provincial Park [D1-E2]

Mount Robson (3,954 m), the highest point in the Canadian Rockies, is magnificent on a clear day as the peak's front face provides the backdrop to the park's visitor center. The center has canoe trip info, interpretive wildlife displays, and scopes to scan for mountain goats. The two- to five-day, 22 km Berg Lake Trail brings registered hikers past more than 15 glaciers and numerous waterfalls to Berg Lake, at the base of the mountain. The park is also one of the best places to see moose, especially in the marshes and lakes along Hwy 16 between Whitney and Moose lakes.

William A. Switzer Provincial Park [B5-C5]

Five lakes connected by Jarvis Creek and surrounded by foothills thick with lodgepole pine, spruce, and aspen make up this park. Blue Lake Adventure Lodge is well-known for its outdoor courses. It also rents canoes, kayaks, camping and fishing gear to those who want to experience the abundant streams.




Ghost Town Cadomin Cave



Ghost Town Coalspur Forestry Provincial Recreation Area



Grande Cache Tourism and Interpretive Centre Sulphur Gates Horseback Rides



Natural Resources Interpretive Park Alberta Forest Service

Museum Cardinal River Coals Obed Mountain Coal Mines Weldwood Nursery Hi-Atha Sawmill



Berg Lake Trail Rearguard Falls Magnificent Overland Falls Arctomys Cave


Map of Hinton & Athabasca River Valley. Detailed map of the highway and roads of Hinton & Athabasca River Valley