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D5 McGillvray Canyon New Year's Adventure Hike

  • Jan 1, 2013 · 11:00 AM
  • McMahon Stadium


Event Description

D5 - Difficult, speed dictated by terrain. Difficult due to chain/cable descent.
[ Click here to access the Difficulty Ratings Charts ]

Distance: 4 km return
Elevation gain: 200+/- m

This is such a beautiful canyon that I want to visit it again. More than a hike, this is a canyoneering excursion, to a lovely, narrow, steep-sided canyon. There are some chains and cables that you must be able to descend into the canyon floor on. There are also two cables which cross 20 foot sections above pools which must be crossed. If the pools are frozen and ice is thick enough we can cross on the ice. We may also slide across on logs. You must have hiking boots with good tread, icers or crampons, and gloves that will let you grip the chains and cables without slipping. There will be plenty of opportunities to take pictures of your fellow hikers and the beautiful rockscapes within the canyon.

By participating in this CORA activity, you automatically agree to follow the CORA Rules of Conduct. Please read them by clicking here.

I am going to place everyone on the waiting list to begin with.  I will move people off the waiting list based on several criteria. Foremost among these is the number of drivers I have, and they will receive preference. Second, your abilities, or my perception of them.  Third, reservation & attendance history.

I shall probably limit the trip to 10 people in total.  Please do not sign up if you are not willing to commit to the trip.

Once you are moved off the waitlist please confirm your attendance. Update your RSVP as early as possible, at least 48 hours before the meeting time. Have consideration for those on the Waiting List and for your fellow hikers and organizer. If you are unable to attend for any reason whatsoever, LET ME KNOW as soon as possible. If you do not let me know, you will be recorded as "no show".


If you are not a "paid", or "full" member of CORA for 2012, you will need to complete a become a member or purchase a day membership. The membership form can be downloaded here. Please READ the document and fill in your personal details, but do not sign it. Your organizer will be your witness. The yearly membership fee is $20 which will allow you to attend CORA events until the Annual General Meeting in 2014. Alternately, you may sign a trip waiver and participate as a non-member for $5 for the day.


This is a difficult hike. If I don't know you, and your abilities, you will have to convince me that you are strong enough to do this. Please be realistic about your abilities. Being overly optimistic may limit you and the group and possibly lead to injury or worse. Please gauge your abilities appropriately. Please let me know ahead of time if you have any medical conditions.

DOGS: Not permitted


We'll meet in the parking lot of MacMahon Stadium. From there we will follow Hwy 1 westbound to Deadmans Flats and turn back onto Hwy 1 eastbound. The McGillivray Pond parking lot is actually 82 km from the Shouldice Arena, but because we are turning around at Deadmans Flats to Hwy 1 east, a bit longer. We will hike to the top of the canyon where there is a giant wedged boulder. After that we will begin the descent through the canyon and come out at the original trailhead.

I do not have a vehicle.  This trip, like all my trips, is dependent upon having enough drivers.

WEATHER FORECAST: Will be updated closer to the event date.


The trail is relatively good with a few narrow steep sections with exposure. The terrain is very rocky in the canyon and will require attention to footing. The rocks will have some ice on them, icers or crampons should be handy in case they are required. If previous experience is any indication, there may be times when we will have to assist each other.


CORA trips start at the trailhead. As a convenience to participants only, we meet at the meeting point in Calgary then car pool from there. Please be on time. You may choose to meet us at the trailhead, but please advise us ahead of time. Please indicate in your RSVP COMMENTS if you can drive, if necessary. I need to know if we have adequate transportation for all participants. Please reimburse some $$ to drivers for gas.

EQUIPMENT: Sturdy warm winter hiking boots, gators.  Weather can change quickly -- rain, snow, wind or cold, especially in the mountains it will be winter. BE PREPARED. NO COTTON! NO JEANS! Dress in layers for winter weather conditions.


Mandatory - Sense of adventure, good lunch, at least 1.5 L of water, layers, sturdy warm waterproof hiking boots, gloves and icers. 
Recommended - camera, light tripod (light levels are low inside the canyon), hot tea.

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  • sidney w.

    An exceptional hiking experience. We have become the "Chain Gang"

    January 1, 2013

  • Bruce P.

    Thanks everyone. All in all, A good day.

    1 · January 1, 2013

    • Geoff H.

      This is Trish...thanks for organizing Bruce. It was a lot of fun and scenic!

      January 1, 2013

  • patrick

    niiice very very niiice

    January 1, 2013

  • U. P.

    Thanks guys. It was a fun outing!

    January 1, 2013

  • Bruce P.

    The forecast for tomorrow is mostly sunny. Temperatures will probably hover around 0. There is no precipitation forecast, and no wind.

    December 31, 2012

  • Bruce P.

    FYI: I am dependent on having drivers in order to make this happen. If no drivers sign up by late Sunday/early Monday I will have to cancel the event.

    December 28, 2012

10 went

Membership dues

CAD20.00 before first trip

This covers: Annual Membership

Payment is accepted using:

  • PayPal
  • Cash or check - “Payment must be made before attending your first trip of the year with CORA. Your Membership will be valid until the next AGM.

Refunds are not offered for this Meetup.

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