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Castleguard Meadows via Alexandra River Backpack (9/2/2020)

PRE-REGISTRATION REQUIRED: Once you've reviewed the event details, and decided you'd like to join us, you MUST sign up at the bottom of this page.For some events a payment may be required. Payment is not made directly to COC - please review event details fully for information about if and how you will be required to make payment.

You are STRONGLY encouraged to read this page in its entirety before signing up. If you'd like to attend, we ask that you abide by our rules and procedures as a time/cost saving process (with an end result of keeping membership inexpensive).

$43.00/Person (See Detailed Cost Info Below)
The Basics:
Event Type:Hike - Backpack
Event Location: Banff National Park
Date(s) & Time:Wed, Sep 2 2020, Thu, Sep 3 2020, Fri, Sep 4 2020, Sat, Sep 5 2020, Sun, Sep 6 2020  8:00 AM
Registration Cut Off: Thu, Aug 27 2020 12:00:00 PM
Event Duration:5 days 5 nights
Difficulty Rating:D6: Difficult to Advanced
Event Coordinator(s): Ben Cheong
You must be logged in to get the Event Coordinator contact information.

Participant Info:
Who's Invited: Members & Guests, 18 And Older Only
Maximum Group Size:4
Maximum No. Guests:0
Minimum Group Size:3
Maximum No. Guests Per Member:1
Number Registered So Far: 4 (To see who's signed up, log in to the Member Area)
Are Dogs Permitted: No

Have you travelled in the last 14 days? Are you showing any symptoms, been in contact with a confirmed case, or been tested positive at all? Have you read and understood the current restrictions that are club policy during the COVID-19 situation?

Please answer these questions in the comments or medical section during the sign up process, in addition to signing the waiver. Your coordinator has been instructed to remove you from the event if you do not answer or comply with these questions. Failure to follow the guidelines could result in you being evicted from the event even after it has commenced. Your coordinator has this discretion and you could be reported to the club if you create problems. The COC is attempting to keep all members safe and asks for your respect during these difficult times. If you do not wish to follow these temporary restrictions you should not sign up but are welcome to continue after the restrictions have been removed.

Please read all details below. Registration starts with the waitlist.

This is remote wilderness backcountry backpack.
Located on the edge of the Columbia Icefield, the Castleguard Meadows lie between Castleguard and Terrace Mountains. Described by Muir and Ford in their book Castleguard “So many natural features compete for attention that the senses become saturated”. Views include numerous peaks, river valleys, gorgeous meadows and glaciers.

The trail via the Alexandra and Castleguard Rivers is a tough slog. But those who make it there will never forget this remarkable region.Finding the way on this remote route, unmaintained track in Banff Park’s northern reaches is not a walk in the park. There will be significant amounts of route finding, deadfall clambering, bushwhacking, numerous unbridged creek crossings and one deeper river crossing wih likely fast moving water. The route in and the meadows itself has been described as a bear highway, so be prepared. We might even peek at a glacier depending on the final plan.

This trip is best suited to experienced backpackers only.
Trip distance is approx 70 km and 2000m in elevation gain not including a side trip of about 10km.

1 Sep - Optional overnight camp near the trailhead.
2 Sep - Wed 20 km to campsite 1 - 320m
3 Sep - Thu 14 km to campsite 2 - 700m
4 Sep - Fri Side Trip Explore the meadows to Saskatchewan Glacier approx. 10 km- 300m
5 Sep - Sat 21 km Return out to campsite 3 - 300m
6 Sep - Sun 13 km back to Trail Head - 300m

Payment Notes:
- Costs per person are due immediately due upon sign up. Send to me using email interac transfer. Indicated costs does not include the optional overnight on 1 Sep.
- There will be NO REFUNDS after the registration cut off if a suitable replacement cannot be found. READ CAREFULLY BEFORE SIGNING UP. Any questions, ask first.
- The indicated cost covers the cost of the campsite permits only.
- You’ll need to have your own National Park pass to enter the park.

Even-More-Pay-Attention Notes:
- NO CARPOOL. You’ll have to arrange for your own transportation to the trailhead parking.
- You should be able to stay with the group and not shoot off on your own including any apres event activities. See plan above.
- This is definitely bear country. Might see a Grizzly too if we’re lucky. Stay together.
- You should be reasonably fit and have done at least a couple of backpacking trips previously with one recent trip. Your coordinator is not particularly good at hauling people out from the trail.
- Some possible creek crossings
- There are no bail out points except on the last day. See plan above.
- Our pace will be moderate, about 2.5-3km an hour. Give or take. There will be plenty of photo stops along the way.
- We’ll be practicing lightweight backpacking. Your pack should not exceed 35lbs all in, lesser is preferable. A lighter pack also means more enjoyable trip instead of huffing it. Typical Lightweight Backpacking List (the lighter the better)
- This is a fun anything goes event. If you're uptight about stuff, might not be the event for you.
- Pre-trip meets will be conducted online.
- Bring a small light backpacking saw

Required Items to Bring:
- Lightweight backpacking gear. Under 35lbs total, the lighter the better, enough elevation gain to make you huff.
- Personal first aid kit
- Adequate layers and rain gear for the conditions
- Bear spray (it's Teddy's backyard)
- Bag to pack out your garbage
- National Park pass
- Face mask and Hand sanitizer. The mask will not be worn but is on standby
- Small light backpacking saw (something bigger than your hand...)
Recommended Items to Bring:
Use our Event Checklists to make sure you have everything you need.
- Camera
- SPOT or Inreach device
- Hiking poles
- Sunscreen
- Sunglasses
- Bug net / bug spray

How to Get There:
Event Directions:Wait for email for exact location meet.


- We encourage all members to follow our Etiquette Guidelines at all times while participating in COC events.
- Details of this event are subject to undergo a change at any point in time, with or without warning.
- Questions about equipment or rentals? Contact the Event Coordinator for suggestions and recommendations.
- Notice any errors or problems in the information on this page? Please notify our Content Editor(s), Wendy W and Lynda H., at
- Support the club by purchasing a Premier Membership: $25 a year

Cancellation/Partial Attendance:
Please review our Cancellation Policy carefully!
*Note: No refunds upon registration. We will try our best to locate a suitable replacement from the the waitlist. If there is no one on the waitlist, you'll have to find your own replacement.