Smith Dorrien Trail is a dusty scenic drive of Canada

Smith Dorrien Trail is the name of a very scenic drive located in Kananaskis, in the Alberta province of Canada. It's one of the highest roads in the country.

Smith Dorrien Trail

How long is the Smith Dorrien Trail?

Tucked away in the Bow Valley Provincial Park, the road—also known as Highway 742—is 70.2km (43.62 miles) long, running from south of Canmore (a town in the west of Calgary) to Kananaskis Trail (Highway 40).

Is Alberta Highway 742 paved?

The road is gravel-surfaced and rather dusty with a lot of washboards. It’s pretty easy to drive; no need for an SUV.

Is the Smith Dorrien Trail open?

Set high in Alberta’s Rocky Mountains, the road tops out at Smith-Dorrien Pass, at 1.909m (6,263ft) above sea level. Be prepared for severe winter conditions: you’ll find mounds of snow, even in high summer.

How long does it take to drive the Smith Dorrien Trail?

To drive the road without stopping will take most people between 1.5 and 2 hours. Running through the heart of the scenic Smith-Dorrien Valley, the drive is very scenic. It is well worth your time. The trail winds its way through moose habitat.

Is the Smith Dorrien Trail dangerous?

Tucked away on the western part of the country, to the south of Canmore, the biggest issue is the dust from a gravel road. If you've ever driven on gravel roads before, the drive won't pose any major challenges. Give plenty of space between vehicles to avoid getting a cracked windshield. Watch out for wildlife. 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 is advised. There is no cell service back there.