Albertawow

Coral Ridge Hike

  Ratings:    Ratings 4 Star
Level: Mod to DiffTime/Dist: 4 to 6 hours / 13.4K returnElevation Gain: 1020m

Trailhead: Park at the Coral Creek parking lot located on the north side of the Cline River near Abraham Lake next next to the David Thompson Highway (#11) 196kms west of Rocky Mountain House. 4.5 hour drive from Edmonton, 3.5 hours from Calgary. If you're traveling from Calgary the route through the National Parks is shorter than heading through Rocky Mountain House.

Description: Follow a well worn horse trail west that runs parallel to the Cline River for approximately 4kms. For better views you can hike along the top of the Cline River gorge until you reach the Coral Creek lookout. Both trails will end up at the Coral Creek junction. Once you reach Coral Creek, hike past the lookout on your left until you arrive at the top of a short incline just before the trail starts to descend steeply down again towards Coral Creek. At this point you'll see an open view of Coral Creek to your left and a trail heading off to your right. Turn right here and follow a trail that seems to disappear after a few meters. It took me a couple of attempts to find my way until I realized there is no defined trail from this point on. Coral Ridge see's only a few hikers each season. Work your way up over several grass covered ledges while staying right towards the south face of Coral Ridge. Along the way you'll locate a hint of a trail here and there, however expect a lot of light bushwhacking. Continue on until you reach the top of the south ridge. From the ridge the going gets much easier. Views of the Cline River valley below you will recharge your enthusiasm for the final grind to the top of Coral Ridge. Follow the ridge east then start climbing an open scree slope that supposedly holds coral fossils. I spent several hours scouring the ridge for fossils and only found a couple that were of very poor quality.

To my surprise, near the ridge top you'll find a large memorial bolted to the rock face that is dedicated to Henry Stelfox. There is really no trail to get to this point so finding a substantial memorial did seem somewhat unusual. Views from the top of the ridge towards Abraham Lake and the valley below are absolutely stunning. One can understand why they placed Mr. Stelfox's memorial at this location.

Near Here: Local campgrounds include Rampart Creek, Thompson Creek, Two O'clock Creek, Dry Haven, Gold Eye Lake, Fish Lake and Crescent Falls Campground. Trailheads to Alexandra's Henry's Trail, Big Whirlpool, Glacier Lake, Kinglet Lake, Loudan Creek, Icefalls Two O'clock Creek, Sunset Lookout, Owen Creek, Michelle Lakes, Siffleur Falls, Tuff Puff, Two O'clock Ridge, Coral Ridge, Vision Quest, Hoodoo Creek, Allstones Creek, Allstones Lake, Crescent Falls, Siffleur Falls, are all located near here. You are in bear country.

 

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White Goat Peaks And Coral Creek Gorge 
  
  
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Coral Creek Lookout 
  
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South Coral RidgeCline River Valley
  
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South Coral Ridge and Abraham LakeFirst Cairn South Coral Ridge
  
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Coral RidgeHenry Stelfox Memorial
  
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 Resolute Mountain And Mount Cline
  
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Abraham LakeSentinel Mountain And Elliot Peak
  
 
  
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 White Goat Peaks
  
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Abraham LakeAbraham Lake
  
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 White Goat Peaks And Wilderness Area
  
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Top of Coral RidgeTop of Coral Ridge
  
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 Abraham Lake
  
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Abraham Lake, Last Cairn On Coral RidgeAbraham Lake
  
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Resolute Mountain And Mount ClineCline River Valley And Mount Minster
  
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Abraham LakeAbraham Lake
  
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