Sulphur River (AB) III

A very continuous grade II-III run through a deep scenic canyon. The canyon cuts through a coal seam and the grain of the rock provides endless eddies with clean sharp eddy lines, and lots of one-shot waves, particularly at high water. There are also a couple of decent sized, sticky hydraulics, especially at higher water.

The run passes by the incredible Sulphur Gates before its confluence with the Smoky River.

To get to the Sulphur Gates take out: you must ferry as soon as the Sulphur and Smoky rivers meet in order catch the river left eddy on the Smoky, located immediately downstream of Sulphur Gates.

To get to the blue bridge take out: carry on down the mellow grade I-II Smoky for close to 1hr and grab the river right eddy after the blue bridge.

River Alerts

If this space is blank there have been no alerts posted for this specific river.


The symbols can be clicked on and provide some simple explanations of why they are there. You can also use the symbols to get directions from Google Maps to the put in/takeout. A handy thing!

Run Information


Blue bridge takeout(longer paddle) - From Grande Cache head North on Hwy 40 down hill for a couple of Km to the Smoky River. Just before the blue bridge over the Smoky river take the turnoff on the right(East) side of the road into the little recreation area and park near the river. This takeout requires more time on the water but the hike out is flat and <100m.

Sulphur Gates Take out(shorter paddle) - Same as above except continue past the blue bridge on Hwy 40 for ~3Km to the Sulpher Gates Rd on the left(West) side of the road. Follow for ~6Km and park at the reasonably large parking area you'll find on the right side of the road. The trail from the takeout is a quad track directly across Sulpher gates rd from the parking area. To get to the parking area from the river requires a ~250m hike up a moderately steep pitch. the river comes out on the left(East) side of Sulphur gates road.

Put In

From either take out head South on Hwy 40 back through Grande Cache. Turn right(West) on Hoppe Avenue near the East end of town. From Hoppe Avenue turn South (left) onto 104 street. The street will eventually swing right, but continue straight onto a gravel road to a gate. You can steer to the right at the fork to pass through the gate. If the gate is locked a key can be obtained from the Tourism Information Centre on Highway 40. Continue past the gate where you will pass a gravel pit to the Fireman's Pit Group picnic area. Take a right at the fence and follow a narrow dirt road for half a kilometer to a small parking area. Park and leave room for the rafting companies that also use the river. There is a well defined trail down to the river.


Continuous river run with many play waves and beautiful scenery.

Length & Time

15km to the bridge, 9km to Sulphur Gates, Couple_Hours



Flow Information

When (which months), Why (rain, snow melt, glacial melt), What is highwater? low water? How to tell the flow if there is no gauge. FIXME


No Gauge


Other Resources

River Alerts

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