ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Regional forums > Canada
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 08-27-2011, 04:20 PM   #1
Lycan1 OP
Grizzly herder
 
Lycan1's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Calgary,Alberta
Oddometer: 1,592
Alberta Gorge Creek Road

For those of you that always feel the government is always looking out for your best interests and always obey all the signs they post up PLEASE Look Away NOW! GO NO FURTHER.....DANGER!












For those with a serious sense of curiosity, that sometimes gets the better of you, continue reading.

http://tpr.alberta.ca/parks/kananask...eep_Valley.pdf















OK, I'll admit, after doing a bit of research I was really curious to see if my 500 lb bike (with me at the helm) could make it from north to south on Gorge Creek Trail. On my Alberta Backroads map book, it shows it connecting 549 / McLean creek Trail (west of Millerville) to Sheep River Road/ 546 west of Turner Valley. Back in 2005 there was some bad flooding in the area just south of the parking lot at Ware Creek, which is the north most end of Gorge Creek trail. After traversing this trail it is SHEER LAZINESS that the government closed this trail. I guarantee that the money spend on the gates at each end FAR surpasses what would have been required to repair the minor damage at three spots along the approximately 14 km of trail. I was expecting to have to turn around after what I had read about trail damage. But as my pictures show it is really minor. I would not want to take a car through because of one part of the trail that is narrowed by a collapse, but a quad or bike, bicycle, horse or hiking would be easy, and was! You do need to be aware along the trail as there was one bad hole that I did not take a picture of, again by a small culvert, but even a car could have passed that one. I saw where the Volcano Ridge parking lot used to be, they dug the road out, but it would be easy with anything short of a passenger car, to get into it. The trail is 99 % in great shape with a wide solid road base. Beautiful, if unremarkable in it's scenery. I did not see any wildlife along it's path and I puttered along slowly just enjoying a easy relaxing ride. At the south gate I traversed the muddy ditch full of hoof prints that the equestrian riders had left open. from there south there was one small washout with cones around it on the well travelled section to the junction with 546.

This is easy to do with even a big bike. The only challenge is weaving through the trees to the barbed wire gate on the left of the big steel gate at Ware Creek. The muddy ditch at the Gorge Creek gate at the south end is no big deal to anyone with half decent riding skills (or a buddy to pick you up when you crash).


The Rant section.

Why the Government felt it neccesary to spend thousands on such robust gates, specifically at the south end, instead of 2 truck loads of gravel and a mini tanker of calcium chloride, which is all that the trail needed to be 100% is a mystery. At the very least they could have made the entrance too narrow for cars and left it at that, for MUCH less tax payer dollars. Instead, they once again decriminate against motorized recreational users in favor of non road-tax payers on bicycles and horses. One person pointed out that if an oilfield company wanted to put up a rig they would open the road right away (but only to the oil company). What they should be doing is encouraging all tourists regardless of what method of transport they use to see another beautiful area of K country. I did, but I was being a bad citizen going where my government felt was unsafe for me to be, they were wrong as they so often are. I was responsible and closed the gates (as the little signs on them requested users to do), something the horse riders could not be bothered to do.

Here is what it looks like from north to south;


Junction of McLean Creek Trail and Ware Creek road at Northfork


Shot from earlier this year at the Gate at Ware Creek Parking lot.


The sign says "please close gate" I did.


just inside the north gate.


nice easy trail before the first damage.


too narrow for a car, but easy for all others.


maybe 5 or six km from the north end, the worst washout.


easy bypass on the left of the washed out culvert. Easy to see this coming if you pay attention, bad if you don't!


just south of the washout after doing the ditch bypass.


very minor washout, easy if you go slow.


one gate to go through, even with my bags I could get through the green gate.


looking south from the same spot.


just north of the south or "Gorge Creek parking area" gate.


on the south side of the south gate. Serious, big bucks gate!


scenery west of the trail at the southern most end.


Just north of Sheep River road at the south end, just onto the trail.


back on pavement west of Turner Valley.


Easy landmark to find the south entrance to the trail.


Old ranger station on north side of road just before the south entrance.

I hope you enjoyed the pictures if not the rant. Thanks for looking.
__________________
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=595530
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=702314
Uhaul, it's part of the KTM experience.
09 KTM 990 Adv

Lycan1 screwed with this post 08-29-2011 at 06:24 AM
Lycan1 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-27-2011, 10:08 PM   #2
RED CAT
Bumpy Backroader
 
RED CAT's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2005
Location: Western Canada
Oddometer: 2,746
The Horsey Crowd!

Convinced them to leave the road closed so only they could use it.
RED CAT is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2011, 06:11 AM   #3
Lycan1 OP
Grizzly herder
 
Lycan1's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Calgary,Alberta
Oddometer: 1,592
Quote:
Originally Posted by RED CAT View Post
Convinced them to leave the road closed so only they could use it.
My Orange horse was the only thing moving along the path yesterday morning.
__________________
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=595530
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=702314
Uhaul, it's part of the KTM experience.
09 KTM 990 Adv
Lycan1 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2011, 08:27 AM   #4
MCMXCIVRS
Begining the Adventure
 
MCMXCIVRS's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2006
Location: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Oddometer: 1,200
Quote:
Originally Posted by RED CAT View Post
Convinced them to leave the road closed so only they could use it.
I agree, it had little to do with the repair costs and more to do with the non-motorized lobby wanting to keep it closed. That and I think they felt keeping it closed would help prevent the hooligan types who frequent the McClean creek area, particularily the long weekend mayhem makers from getting into the Sheep River Park area. Its to bad that the responsible ones end up paying the price too. I would like to see it re-opened.
__________________
Ed

2009 BMW F800GS, 2008 BMW K1200GT
MCMXCIVRS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-28-2011, 08:28 PM   #5
JACjac
Vicarious Adventurer
 
JACjac's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2011
Location: Calgary
Oddometer: 21
Thanks for the pics

I am curious about this trail, but have been too timid (law-abiding?) to go through. I have ridden to the closure on the north end and then to the south end closure. It looks as though it is about 10km from closure to closure.

Now you've inspired me and I think I'll make a go of it before this season ends. I ride a little 250 so getting through is a non-issue. Besides, it looks like there isn't much wrong with that road, as you pointed out.

The comment on the "horsey folk", as Red Cat called them, reminds me of something that happened a few weeks back. I was out puttering around the Forestry Trunk Road and rode up to Limestone Mountain. On the way back I stopped for gas at Mountain Aire and then decided to go west to explore. I had no real idea what I was going to find. Well, it turns out that road goes to Ya Ha Tinda and was packed with horse trailers etc. Seriously, the camping area at the end looked like a small city with horse trailers instead of houses.

But, I digress.... the subject of my rant here is the barely veiled hostility I got from these people. I was riding at a mild pace for 2 reasons; one, I was behind a horse trailer dust cloud much of the time, and two, I was just riding a laid-back pace. One time when I was in 'clean air', I came over a blind crest at a slow speed (say 40km/h) and there were 2 people on horseback about 50m in front of me, in the middle of the road! I locked up to avoid them and all I got was cold stares from the 2 f*ckers! No wave, no acknowledgement. I was down to a crawl by the time I passed them and just stared right back. What makes it worse is that I was likely going slower than 1/2 of the guys towing travel trailers and horse trailers in and out of there!

I kept on going (remember, I didn't know where the road went yet) and after a few minutes I reached horse trailer city. The road continued (PUBLIC ROAD, I might add) and there were no signs/restrictions so I kept going. I just putt-putted along and passed several people walking, a few on horseback and one mule team hauling a wagon. When not under heavy acceleration my bike is very quiet. I was down to 1st gear idle speed at all times when anywhere near people or livestock. I got so many stink-eye stares and the mule team guy actually yelled something at me. If I had stopped I wouldn't have been surprised if I had been physically assaulted.

Anyways, it bothered me. I didn't do anything wrong but kind of felt like a criminal. There are no signs restricting entry; it is a public area. I wasn't going fast and my bike is not loud. I won't go back on my bike, although it is a beautiful area. If there were ANY signs telling me to beware/not enter/stop I would have gladly obeyed and turned around. There were none.

Sorry, thread hijack over.... this thread just reminded me of it. I meant to write to the Ya Ha Tinda people to complain and suggest they post some signs if they don't want "non-horsies" to enter. Maybe I still will write to them.
JACjac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2011, 06:01 AM   #6
Lycan1 OP
Grizzly herder
 
Lycan1's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Calgary,Alberta
Oddometer: 1,592
What I find most Ironic about the "Horsey folks" and their "naturalism" / Eco friendly arrogance is how they haul huge trailers with (gas or diesel smoke belching) one-ton pick-ups out to huge parking lots, packing generators to run their fridges, heaters and TVs. Then put on the cowboy facade during the day. When they get done for the day they want all the trappings of home, like cold beer and television. Then they have the gall to look down on us for riding a gas-sipping bike, doing they same thing that their horse can do with (most likely) a smaller "enviornmental footprint" after all is said and done. It just makes them look stupid.

No surprise that Alberta would cater to the Horse crowd though. It is after all part of the Alberta Marketing image. The Alberta Cowboy; Drives a big Diesel pick-up to the Oil rig all week then puts on chaps and rides a horse for week end parades. Maybe the same folks do the marketing for Harley and look at their sucess.

http://kananaskisblog.com/gorge-creek-road/2008/
__________________
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=595530
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=702314
Uhaul, it's part of the KTM experience.
09 KTM 990 Adv

Lycan1 screwed with this post 08-29-2011 at 06:19 AM
Lycan1 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-30-2011, 05:17 PM   #7
windquest
Studly Adventurer
 
windquest's Avatar
 
Joined: Nov 2008
Location: Calgary, AB
Oddometer: 574
I have ridden my XR650R to both closures and have always wondered what condition lay past those gates.... now I have confirmed the bs. I have ridden a horse in that area as well as hiked since no other type of activity is allowed. What I found was quite a suprise, The horse trails are in equal or worse shape than many of the beat up quad trails in Mclean Creek. I now know that horseback riding and towing your 50 foot horse trailer with your 1 ton pickup is far more damaging than any dualsport motorcycle could ever be.

All this is a great shame since the sheep river has some unbelievable single track... sadly only the horseback riders will get to see it and damage it while we get to watch from our hiking boots.
windquest is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-31-2011, 02:34 PM   #8
Cowtowner
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Cowtowner's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2010
Location: Calgary
Oddometer: 178
I ride Maclean Creek and if you ask me the some of the most beat up sections are huge fields of post holes caused by cattle. I've seen the same thing caused by horses on hiking trails in Banff National Park. Many of the single track trails in Maclean don't look any different from a mountain bike trail. Yet off road bikes are somehow the enemy ...



Quote:
Originally Posted by windquest View Post
I have ridden my XR650R to both closures and have always wondered what condition lay past those gates.... now I have confirmed the bs. I have ridden a horse in that area as well as hiked since no other type of activity is allowed. What I found was quite a suprise, The horse trails are in equal or worse shape than many of the beat up quad trails in Mclean Creek. I now know that horseback riding and towing your 50 foot horse trailer with your 1 ton pickup is far more damaging than any dualsport motorcycle could ever be.

All this is a great shame since the sheep river has some unbelievable single track... sadly only the horseback riders will get to see it and damage it while we get to watch from our hiking boots.
Cowtowner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-01-2011, 08:33 PM   #9
tinbasher
Adventurer
 
Joined: Jul 2007
Location: alberta foothills gravel everywhere
Oddometer: 54
Gorge roady

Came on to that road by accident a coupla years ago. Gates wide open. Went for a quick rip across, came back, realized it was so much fun that I did it twice more. Still one of the best roads to ride fast lots of ups and downs. Don't fix it just open the gates. It doesn't need repairs, it will only get better.
tinbasher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2013, 09:39 PM   #10
KyleKelso
n00b
 
Joined: Oct 2013
Location: Calgary, unless I'm elsewhere
Oddometer: 2
Well I went for a rip on my new KLX250 last night and after spotting this loop on google maps (from Bragg Creek through Mclean Creek to Turner Valley and back to south Calgary) I did a quick google search and found this thread, so thanks for the beta! Unfortunately the flooding this year did not make it better, it is now impassible. I did the route from the north as well and the first few obsticles look the same but eventually I hit a huge culvert washout that was probably a 6' vertical drop on either side of a substantial gap into the flowing creek below. Not sure how the creek crossing would be but it looked pretty marshy to me. It was full dark by this point and I was alone so I didn't look too hard at crossing before I made a quick retreat.

I just wanted to post a recent update on this trail as it was certainly a fun one. A bit of lumber and it could probably be back in action ;)

Also as a new member I just want to say Hi to everyone, especially the Calgary locals likely to be reading this!
KyleKelso is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2013, 06:01 AM   #11
Lycan1 OP
Grizzly herder
 
Lycan1's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2010
Location: Calgary,Alberta
Oddometer: 1,592
Landmarks

The builds on the north end just east of the turnoff are all gone now, maybe a fire hazard or the victim of vandals, I'm just guessing. Kyle, just as well you didn't get all the way through as one member reported a huge washout on the road between the highway and the south parking lot, that was impassable. Some updated pictures would have great along the trail.

I have been staying away since that first ride, tempting, but not worth the hassle.
__________________
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=595530
http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=702314
Uhaul, it's part of the KTM experience.
09 KTM 990 Adv
Lycan1 is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 07:06 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014