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Frank Lake | Crowsnest Pass, Alberta

Natural Area, Lake, River, or Waterfall

Frank Lake was formed by the sudden damming of the Crowsnest River by the 1903 collapse of Turtle Mountain. The lake extends across the entire face of Frank Slide, terminating at a plug of limestone boulders that was blasted open shortly after the calamity.

Crowsnest River forms Frank Lake as it enters the slide area – David Thomas

Boat Access Locations

Canoes or kayaks can be launched where Gold Creek enters the Crowsnest River, just upstream from Frank Lake.

Driving Directions from Nearest Town or Landmark

From Alberta Highway 3 just west of the Frank Slide debris field, cross the railway tracks towards the sprawl of industrial sites. Keep left of the industrial park itself and follow the gravel road eastward a short distance. Look for a dirt track branching southward, on the west side of a small stream called Gold Creek. Continue to a grass parking area. Walk east along the Crowsnest River towards Frank Lake.

Fishing Access Highlights

A float tube would be useful.

Fishing Highlights

Because the lake is difficult to access, and fishing from shore near impossible, it has become a de facto sanctuary for the Crowsnest River's biggest trout. Float tubers have the best hope for success, but that does not stop others from perching atop boulders to cast over big fish lurking in the clear depths. In fact, it may be more fun just to observe the unusually big creatures.

Paddling Highlights

This might be a interesting body of water to explore in a canoe or kayak. Paddle craft could be launched easily enough from the mouth of Gold Creek.


Access to Lake or River

Dirt-Road, High Clearance Vehicle