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Alberta Online Encyclopedia

Grotto Canyon Walls

The plaque that greets you at the entrance to the Grotto Canyon trail reads:

The plaque that greets you at the entrance to the Grotto Canyon trail reads:

You are not the first visitors to Grotto Creek. 500 to 1000 years ago, native people sought the solitude of this isolated canyon in their quest for guidance from the spirit world. Their visits were recorded in pictographs, on the smooth canyon walls. If you see pictographs, please do not touch them as they are extremely delicate.

The steep canyon walls were carved thousands of years ago by the surging meltwater from a receding glacier. The walls of the canyon and valley protect a variety of plant life, such as limber pine and Douglas maple, not commonly found in our mountains.

The trail enters Grotto Canyon about .5 km (.3 mile) from here, continues for 1.4 km (.8 mile), then widens into a backcountry valley.

Photo courtesy of the Heritage Community Foundation.

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            For more on the Aboriginal history of Alberta, visit Peel’s Prairie Provinces.