Red Deer, Alberta, Canada Community
Red Deer, Alberta, Canada
WELCOME TO THE RED DEER ALBERTA CANADA HU COMMUNITY
Why Red Deer Alberta??
Red Deer Alberta is located 150km (90mi) north of Calgary, 150 km (90mi) south of Edmonton, and most importantly for motorcycle travelers, about 150km (90mi) east of the famous Alberta Forestry Trunk Road!! And heck Grant even has relatives in Red Deer!!!
What's the Alberta Forestry Trunk Road (AFTR)?
Anyone travelling from the southern or eastern US or Canada to Alaska or Yukon, has a number of choices going through Alberta.
Most people heading north travel west of Calgary to Banff and Lake Louise then north on Highway 93 through the Icefields Parkway. This is great route but can be busy in the summer. From Jasper, you can follow the Yellowhead further west then head north through the Alaska or Cassiar routes.
A far less traveled and much more adventurous route through Alberta's can be taken on Alberta's Forestry Trunk Road (Hwy 940) â€“ a 1200km route through the Eastern Slopes of the Rockies. The Route starts in Coleman in the Crowsnest Pass in Southern Alberta where runs north through the Livingston River area and Kananaskis Country, before turning onto the pavement.
A bit of backtracking on the TransCanada allows you to then head north again on the Trunk Road just west of Cochrane. The route follows the Waiparous River a bit, then heads into the Ghost Wilderness area (a great side trip starts at the Bar Cee ranch where you can ride down into the Ghost River area â€“ spectacular!) The trunk road continues north through the Waiparous Off Highway Vehicle area, and then passes through the Panther River area. Stop for gas at Mountainaire Lodge and you have the option of a side trip out to Ya Ha Tinda ranch. Again great riding and views. Going north from Mountainaire will take you across the Red Deer River, through Seven Mile Flats, Corkscrew Mountain and Ram Falls, (another side trip to Hummingbird is well worth the time), eventually to Nordegg â€“ a recovering ghost town famous for coal briquettes that powered Canada's trains into the 1950's.
Ram Falls - Photo by Aurum Lodge
There's lots of options around Nordegg including side trips to Shunda, Coliseum Mountain, Cresecent Falls, Aurum Lodge the Kootenay Plains, and Siffleur Falls.
North of Nordegg the route takes you over the Cardinal Divide, through the old Coal Branch area around Cadomin and Mountain Park (although Cheviot Mines have created some restrictions with their coal extraction work) and then you are put out onto the pavement of Hwy 16 â€“ the Yellowhead.
Folks wanting further â€˜Trunk' can head back east from Jasper and continue up on Hwy 40 to Grand Cache and Grande Prairie.
The Route offers dual sport riders a round trip option (North on the Trunk, into Jasper and back along with Icefields Parkway, or vice versa. And, once you are on the Trunk, you have LOTS of side route options into various areas of the Eastern Slopes as well as bail out options into towns etc. In fact the entire area covered by the Trunk is riddled with roads and trails that could keep you exploring for years!
The Trunk has lots of Forest Service Campgrounds that are very reasonably priced (sometimes no charge) along with free firewood etc. On weekends and holidays, it can be busy as lots of Albertans get out west to try out the quads (ATVs). The Trunk itself is a fairly wide well maintained gravel/grit road that can get you into territory that'll give you lots of stories for back home.
Want maps of the Trunk???
The best outline of the Trunk and the many side and other backcountry routes are listed in the Backroad Mapbooks published by Mussion Ventures â€“ You'll need the Southwestern Alberta and Central Alberta Books.
Red Deer 's other features
Red Deer itself (pop 75,000) is located in pleasant agricultural parkland and features an extensive walking and pedal bike trail system. There's lots of amenities, motorcycles shops for most makes (Honda, Kawi, Yam, Suz, KTM, oldschool British, etc), and a thriving culture and community scene.
The Red Deer HU Community can offer travelers a place to stay, a place to work on the bikes, connections with all things 2 wheeled, information about the area, travel routes, stories, and good folks. We also keep a detailed hand out of all local Tim Horton's locations.
If you're thinking about the North, and want info, or want to connect, send an email to our community.
Here's a few more links about Red Deer
City of Red Deer website http://www.city.red-deer.ab.ca/default.htm
Red Deer on the Weather Network http://www.theweathernetwork.com/weather/cities/can/Pages/CAAB0253.htm
Red Deer area economics http://www.reddeercorridor.com/home/default.aspx
Wikpedia's Forestry Trunk Road info http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alberta_secondary _ highway_734
The Bighorn Wilderness area http://www.srd.gov.ab.ca/areas/clearwater/bighorn/