Sulphur Gates Provincial Recreational Area, a beautiful gem located in the Municipal District of Greenview, is tucked away off Highway 40 just south of Grande Cache. The recreational area covering an area of more than 1000 hectares is free to visit and can provide an entire day’s worth of fun and outdoor activity.
What to See and Do at Sulphur Gates Provincial Recreational Area
- Crack of Doom: On your way into the area (after turning onto Sulphur Gates Road), make a stop at one of Alberta’s natural wonders, the Crack of Doom. This unique geological formation is a remnant of Alberta’s glacial period and is a stop on Grande Cache’s annual Death Race.
- Canyon & Confluence of smoky and sulphur rivers: The main attraction of the Sulphur Gates Provincial Recreational Area is the beautiful and awe-inspiring views you can get around the paths, stairs, and boardwalks which let you see the confluence of smoky and sulphur rivers and the massive vertical bedrock narrowing the flow of the Smoky River from various angles.
- Camp: The Sulphur Gates Provincial Recreational Area begins at the parking lot and campground further along Sulphur Gates road, where there are 15 non-serviced treed in campsites (some large enough for RVs/trailers). The campground is also a popular destination for horseback riding, and two of the campsites include a corral. From the camping area, you can head off on a day-tike towards Eaton Falls (strength of flow varies depending on the time of the year), or spend time exploring the walkway and look out over the rivers.
- Willmore Wilderness Park: The park is the gateway to Willmore Wilderness Park that protects 4,597 square kilometres of mountain wilderness. Sulphur Gates Provincial Recreational Area is the staging area for many activities including multi-day horse packing trips into unspoiled northeastern edges of the Canadian Rockies. The 7 km trail to Eaton Falls includes some slight elevation gain. Look for the Eaton Falls sign, which guides you onto a narrower trail towards these spectacular hidden mountain falls.
- White Water Rafting: You can also enjoy the views from within the canyon on a white-water rafting adventure. The area is a popular spot for beginner and intermediate rafting, and Wild Blue Yonder can take your entire family on a rafting trip with Sulphur Gates as the main highlight (for ages 8 and older).
Planning Your Trip to the Sulphur Gates Provincial Recreation Area
What: Visit to enjoy spectacular views of Sulphur and Smoky River crossing from above.
Best time to go: Sulphur Gates Provincial Recreation Area and campground are open year-round.
White Water Rafting: During summer
Multi-day (includes short rides) Horse Riding Trips – Late spring to early fall
(All relevant website links are listed at the end of the article)
Visiting the area and parking is free, and camping rates are through Alberta Provincial Parks: $29/night for non-serviced sites.
White Water Rafting: ~ Adults $97 +gst | Child (8-11) $72 +gst (2020 rates)
Horse Riding Trips -Varies depending on the outfitter and the trip.
Located 12 km southwest of Grande Cache, the Sulphur Gates Provincial Recreational Area is approximately 2 hr 15 min (~190 km) drive from Grande Prarie and 4 hr 45 min (~445 km) drive from Edmonton.
For more information:
- Crack of Doom
- Eaton Falls
- Provincial Recreation Area
- White-water rafting
- Multi-day horse packing trips
By: Bernadette Gallagher