Smith Dorrien Trail

Smith Dorrien Trail, a washboard with potholes drive

Smith Dorrien Trail is a very scenic drive located in Kananaskis, Alberta, in Canada. It’s a gravel road which travels through the heart of the scenic Smith-Dorrien Valley. The highest point of the road is the Smith-Dorrien Pass, at 1.905m (6,250ft) above the sea level. It's one of the highest mountain roads of the country.

How long is the Smith Dorrien Trail?

The road (also known as Highway 742) is 62km long. It’s pretty easy to drive, no need for an SUV. The Smith-Dorrien/ Spray Trail (gravel-surfaced and rather dusty) stretches between the town of Canmore and Peter Lougheed Provincial Park, a distance of approximately 70km. The road is gravel with a lot of washboards and is dusty.

Is Smith Dorrien Trail dangerous?

The drive is definitely worth it. There are many excellent photo opportunities here. This drive is well worth your time. The road travels through the heart of the scenic Smith-Dorrien Valley. The biggest issue is the dust from the gravel road. If you've ever driven on gravel roads before, the S.D. won't pose any major challenges. Watch for wildlife - lots of moose, coyotes, and the odd bear along the road. It’s pretty rough in sections and features a narrow, steep winding grade near Canmore. It can be dangerous in the summer because of the dust on the 80kph section. Extreme caution advised.

 

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NOTICE: Due to the spread of COVID-19, many points of interest and roads are closed and travel is not recommended. Please follow all local health authority directives before venturing off, and stay safe.