Panorama of Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near Kananaskis
Panorama of Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near Kananaskis

Sandy McNabb XC Ski Trail

Kananaskis Country
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Winter views on Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near KananaskisBreak area on Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near KananaskisMap of Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near KananaskisBeginning of Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near KananaskisPath through woods on Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near KananaskisWinter trail of Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near KananaskisForest path on Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near KananaskisTight path on Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near KananaskisOpen views on Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near KananaskisWinter scenery on Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near KananaskisRolling hills on Sandy McNabb XC ski trail in Sheep River Provincial Park near KananaskisSandy McNabb XC skiing trail

Sandy McNabb XC Ski Trail

Distance: 2.8mi
Elevation: 299ft
Time: 1-1.5h

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Cross-country skiing in the Sandy McNabb area can be brilliant, though it is the area with the worst snow conditions. When there is good snow and recent grooming, the ski trails at Sandy McNabb offer cross-country skiers with a wide variety of skiing options.

Sandy McNabb XC Ski Trail Map

Getting there

From Turner Valley, head West on Highway 546 for 9.6mi. Turn right into the signed Sheep River Park Headquarters and park in the parking lot there.

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About

When to do

Dec-March

Backcountry Campsites

No

Toilets

Trailhead

Pets allowed

No

Avalanche Risk

None

Family friendly

Yes

Route Signage

Average

Crowd Levels

Low

Route Type

Circuit

Type of XC Route

Track-set


Sandy McNabb
Elevation Graph


Route Description for Sandy McNabb

The Sandy McNabb cross-country ski area is an under appreciated gem, largely due to the variable snow conditions there. Due to being on the front ranges, it gets subjected to warmer weather and chinook winds, which means the trails often need a bit more snow.

If you find a day where there has been recent snow and grooming, then this is a great cross-country skiing day trip very close to Calgary.

There are two cross-country trail networks to ski, north and south of the highway. We prefer going north of the highway, and the Pine Ridge Loop is a fun loop with nice views.

The Pine Ridge loop sets out from the parking lot and goes straight north, before splitting after 0.6mi. We go counter-clockwise at this junction, so go right here and follow the trail for 0.8mi, until you come to the Pine Ridge connector.

In our map we returned on the Pine Ridge connector, as the trails were in rough condition, however in good conditions doing the entire Pine Ridge Loop (another 2.4mi) is highly recommended.

The route back is clear, with the descent from the Pine Ridge connector having some steep sections.

Other great trails in the Sandy McNabb area are the Long Prairie Loop (4.3mi) and the Sandy McNabb Loop (3.9mi)

Insider Hints

  • Check the recent grooming before you head out.

  • For classic down-home cooking in a great old barn, stop off at the Chuck Wagon Café and Grill in Turner Valley.

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