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Thread: Trail Recommendations Around Cadomin

  1. #1

    Trail Recommendations Around Cadomin

    Hi All

    I'm from Winnipeg and am doing a road trip in my stock 2dr JL Rubicon to Cadomin this Saturday. I'll be there for a week vacationing with friends at a local cabin. It's not a dedicated offroading trip since I'll be the only one with a 4x4. Nonetheless, I'll likely have two or three days for that and I am looking for trail recommendations.

    I've been an offroader for 10 years, always with stock 2dr Rubis because I donít want to mod what also has to be my daily driver. I do an annual 2 week offroading trip to Colorado and one or two weeks offroading in the Black Hills of South Dakota.

    I have no issue with Colorado trails rated 4 out of 5 in difficulty with regards to vehicle capability or my skill level. I have not and would not attempt a 5 with a stock Rubi and without considerably more experience.

    Pretty much all of my experience is rock crawling and some fording up to 0.75m deep. I've had very limited exposure to mudding and avoid it wherever possible since, unlike rock crawling, I can't tell what I'm getting into from the look of it.

    I've done a limited amount of research on the Web and came up with Ruby Falls and Box Canyon as trail possibilities. Ruby Falls looks doubtful for me from what I saw on a YouTube video that illustrated a massive mud hole some Jeeps were being winched through. I can't find any real detail on Box Canyon other than a video from a UTV showing isolated stretches. The trail is narrow and Iím not sure if itís limited to UTVs since I havenít come across any photos or videos of Jeeps on it.

    Iíd appreciate if anyone can comment on whether these two trails are viable for my situation or can recommend any others in the area.

  2. #2
    Ruby Falls is very doable in a stock Rubicon. The Jeep eater hole is no longer there. It's been filled and is basically a wide spot on the trail now. Biggest obstacle is the river crossing, and you have to cross it more than once.
    With all the rain we've had, it's bound to be very deep and running fast.

    Haven't heard of Box Canyon.

    That said, I strongly recommend NOT going on any trail if you're the only one with a 4x4. All it takes is a slip into a mud hole or get high centered on a rock and you're hiking out. Or worse.
    Last edited by Bent Bolt; 07-04-2019 at 08:01 PM.
    I have a 1999 Ranger consisting of mostly Ford parts ranging from 1979 to 2005.

  3. #3
    Theres the crystal falls trail. It's pretty short and gotta be sure you dont go past crystal falls as the trail continues but its closed to jeeps past that point.
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  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Bent Bolt View Post
    Ruby Falls is very doable in a stock Rubicon. The Jeep eater hole is no longer there. It's been filled and is basically a wide spot on the trail now. Biggest obstacle is the river crossing, and you have to cross it more than once.

    With all the rain we've had, it's bound to be very deep and running fast.
    That rules out Ruby Falls. I won’t ford fast running water that is deeper than my clearance which is 10” and it Iooks like it will be beyond that. My deep water fording has been limited to beaver ponds and marshes with little to no current.

    Haven't heard of Box Canyon.
    Looks like an easy to moderate trail through very scenic country.

    https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/p/...N3Uh9cmN=h1440

    Here’s the video I found:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DDt1ICxp7Tg

    I originally thought it was a short video that covered just a segment of the trail, but it’s over 40 minutes long and appears to cover its entirety. I’ve made a map of the trail here based on the information I’ve found on the web.

    https://www.google.com/maps/d/u/0/vi...449999998&z=12

    Portions of the Google Maps aerial imagery in the area are very low res so there’s some guestimating on my part for the trail location but it shouldn’t deviate more than +/- 100m laterally.

    There don’t appear to be any major water crossings, thought the start of the trail is through flat lands with lots of ponded water in wet weather. Still, I doubt I’ll be doing it given what I am told are unprecedented wet conditions in the area.

    That said, I strongly recommend NOT going on any trail if you're the only one with a 4x4. All it takes is a slip into a mud hole or get high centered on a rock and you're hiking out. Or worse.
    This gets to the heart of why all my offroading to date has been in the US. I was going to follow-up any responses with a question on frequency of traffic on area trails. I infer from your warning that it could be many days without traffic on some of them.

    My US travels have been on my own to see what I want when I want. The US trails allow me to do this safely since, with the exception of the most extreme trails that I will not do, they all see daily traffic. I’ve helped stranded offroaders on these trails and had one help me with a flat tire. I’ve never been on a US trail where I did not encounter at least one other vehicle. I also travel with a satellite messager that, knock on wood, I’ve never had to use.

    Canada’s sparse population and huge geographic area means trails are isolated in comparison. That has the positive of more opportunities of going into unspoilt wilderness, but the negative that you have to do it as part of a preplanned expedition or hook up with others by chance. Looks like there won’t be much opportunity for that on this outing. Maybe another time.
    Last edited by warc1; 07-05-2019 at 12:02 AM.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by 4everyoung View Post
    Theres the crystal falls trail. It's pretty short and gotta be sure you dont go past crystal falls as the trail continues but its closed to jeeps past that point.
    I haven't been able to confirm this, but it appears that Box Canyon Trail and Crystal Falls Trail are one and the same. It looks like the former name is applied to the portion of the trail beyond the falls and the latter to the portion in advance of the falls.

    Has the section beyond the falls been recently closed to vehicular traffic since there are Youtube videos of quads and UTV's at the very end of the canyon in 2009 and 2014? Conversely, is it that UTV/ATV traffic is allowed but not Jeeps?
    Last edited by warc1; 07-04-2019 at 11:59 PM.

  6. #6
    The last half of the Cardinal River Headwater Falls trail is a NO go for Jeeps and 4x4 trucks. Look up the trail here:

    https://open.alberta.ca/dataset/cbc2...ap-mar2017.pdf

    Jeeps are allowed on orange trails. Not the green. Quads are allowed to the falls but on restricted dates. See the map. We've been fined for being in the wrong spot.
    Crystal falls is OK. The green trail on the map ends near where Crystal Falls is.

    As for Ruby Falls, chances are there will be other vehicles out there. But I wouldn't take the chance. Also been there with our group and see nothing but quads. Main roads ? No problem.
    Last edited by Bent Bolt; 07-05-2019 at 09:18 PM.
    I have a 1999 Ranger consisting of mostly Ford parts ranging from 1979 to 2005.

  7. #7
    N.A.S.A. Jeep Launch Commander Toy Jeep's Avatar
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    I'm not sure when you plan on being in the area. There is a club run planed for the area starting on the July 18 and ending on July 22 we will be camping somewhere around the junction of the of the Pembina River Road and the Cardinal River Road Not to far from the trail-head of the Rubi Falls Trail. If you are in the area during those dates please feel free to stop by we won't be in camp during the day for the most part but we should be there in the evenings.
    Not all who wander are lost
    VE6DKS

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Bent Bolt View Post
    The last half of the Cardinal River Headwater Falls trail is a NO go for Jeeps and 4x4 trucks. Look up the trail here:

    https://open.alberta.ca/dataset/cbc2...ap-mar2017.pdf

    Jeeps are allowed on orange trails. Not the green. Quads are allowed to the falls but on restricted dates. See the map. We've been fined for being in the wrong spot.
    Crystal falls is OK. The green trail on the map ends near where Crystal Falls is.

    As for Ruby Falls, chances are there will be other vehicles out there. But I wouldn't take the chance. Also been there with our group and see nothing but quads. Main roads ? No problem.
    I really appreciate the link. I've downloaded the map and have it on my phone. I just have one question - do I assume correctly that the Grave Flats Road is impassible at the washout?

    Got into Edmonton last night and am heading out this morning to Cadomin. Will likely end up staying on main roads.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Toy Jeep View Post
    I'm not sure when you plan on being in the area. There is a club run planed for the area starting on the July 18 and ending on July 22 we will be camping somewhere around the junction of the of the Pembina River Road and the Cardinal River Road Not to far from the trail-head of the Rubi Falls Trail. If you are in the area during those dates please feel free to stop by we won't be in camp during the day for the most part but we should be there in the evenings.
    Thanks for the invitation. Unfortunately, Iím only around Cadomin for the next four days.

  10. #10
    N.A.S.A. Jeep Launch Commander Toy Jeep's Avatar
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    The last I heard the Grave Flats Road was passable in a 4-wheel drive.

    You can drive most of the way up to the grave flats fire tower.
    Not all who wander are lost
    VE6DKS

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