4 Grande Cache locations worth traversing

What mysteries lay hidden within Grande Cache?

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Smoky River snakes through Grande Cache and beyond.

Smoky River snakes through Grande Cache and beyond. — Photo courtesy Troy Lorencz

Grande Cache is, by definition, a large hiding place. Whether you’re looking to play hide-and-seek or investigate the figurative loot near this Central Alberta town, there are a few details that will aid your traversal of the landscape.

Grande Cache is a small community nestled in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. There is a rich history of coal mining in the area that has resulted in a huge network of exploration roads and cutlines calling for your attention.

Here are four Grande Cache locations worth exploring on your ATV:

Caw Ridge

North of town is a popular recreation area called Caw Ridge. The alpine ridgeline is accessed by numerous old mining roads, making it a pleasant outing for riders of all skill levels. Travel 30 kilometres north on the Beaverdam road to the Caw Ridge turnoff. From there, it is eight kilometres to the ridgetop.

Roads extend most of the length of the ridgeline and allow for multiple side adventures exploring the area. This is a fragile alpine environment so please stay on existing trails and respect the land.

Brinkerhoff

Drive north of Grande Cache on Highway 40 for 30 kilometres, past Sheep Creek. This route is accessed from the gravel pit by the highway. Travel 37 kilometres to the slide area. You can access Prairie Creek Meadows from here, as well as explore numerous cutlines leading in all directions. Be vigilant and stay clear of any possible encroachment on mine territory.

Grande Mountain

Drive south of Grande Cache on Highway 40 for six kilometres. Just past Grande Cache Lake there is a sign on the right-hand side that says “Carconte Creek”. Access is on the left onto the north access road. You can park just off the highway, or if you have a high wheel based vehicle, you can alternatively drive about 100 metres up the right branch to a large clearing. 

À la Pêche Lake

Drive south of Grande Cache on Highway 40 for 32 kilometres. Access to À la Pêche Lake is to the right. After traveling 24 kilometres on variable terrain that involves one river crossing, you will come to the forestry cabin. One kilometre beyond the shelter is the lake. A trail circles it part-way and there are numerous cutlines to explore here too. Stay close to the lake as some routes bring you to Willmore Wilderness Park, which is off limits.

Uncover the huge hidden paydirt waiting to be unearthed in Grande Cache this summer.


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