Discover Crowsnest Pass Day 4: Frank Slide history and sulfur springs in the Stinky Narrows

Join Uplift Adventures on an adventure to Stinky Narrows, the sulphur spring that brought tourists near and far to Crowsnest Pass. 

We accessed this adventure under Turtle Mountain and get a view of the Frank Slide. There are a few misconceptions about what happened when Turtle Mountain fell, and many stories that came out of it. The Frank Slide happened in April 1903. Unfortunately there was a town under the portion of Turtle Mountain that slid. This was the town of Frank. One misconception is that the whole town was covered by the rockslide, when really it was only a portion of the town.

Another misconception is that Turtle Mountain was named by the indigenous people of the area. They called it, ‘the mountain that slowly moves’ and never camped below it, but it was actually named by a rancher by Lee Lake who thought it looked like a turtle.

In 1898, the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) built a railway through the Crowsnest Pass. When the Frank Slide fell it took out part of the railway, so they needed to rebuild it. A man named Sid that was working for the CPR knew there was a passenger train coming into town right after the slide happened. So at 4 am he ran across the new slide to stop that passenger train to warn them before it was too late. He ran 2 km across the huge boulder field and carnage, and successfully reached the train before another catastrophe hit. He succeeded in stopping the train and the CPR recognized his work and gave him a reward of a lifetime of employment. 

Next we get a beautiful view of the Turtle Mountain sulphur spring. People used to take water from this spring and heat it up to have mineral baths. People honour this water and consider it healing water. There was a story that if you drank so much of this water so many times a day you would be very healthy. 

Thank you for joining us to the sulphur spring on Turtle Mountain and thank you to Pam Drover for the music. We invite you to come join us on a hike, backpack, outdoor course, climb or more around Crowsnest Pass, Waterton Lakes National Park, or Castle Parks. We are your local and certified professional guides in the South Canadian Rockies.

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