Plan Your Trip

Get ready for the outdoor adventure you’ve been waiting for on Alberta’s Iron Horse Trail.
Three provincial parks, a multitude of campgrounds, and full-service communities along the way so you can explore the trail for anywhere from an afternoon to a multi-day trip!

Explore Alberta’s longest and oldest continuous trail and experience a Legacy to Discover!


Whether you’re looking for a multi-day trip, or a Saturday afternoon ride, the maps available here will help you plan your adventure on the Iron Horse Trail.


Staging areas include maps, washrooms, picnic tables, off loading ramps and lots of parking. They are often close to businesses where you can stock up on supplies.


Although the trail begins 20 kilometers to the west, the gateway to Alberta’s Iron Horse Trail awaits you in the charming town of Smoky Lake. The staging area is located at the “tee” intersection of Main Street and Railway Avenue.

Ashmont also hosts a major equestrian staging area allowing wagon trains and trail rides an excellent starting point.


In Mallaig enjoy a stop at the charming staging area. The next staging area is at the hamlet of Ardmore. The City of Cold Lake lies at the end of the trail and offers all services and amenities. Immediately east of the City is Cold Lake Provincial Park.


The staging area in the town of St. Paul offers all services: A full service campground, a modern bathroom with showers and even a stocked fish pond. There is also a spectacular metal gateway to the staging area–a tribute to Alberta’s centennial and the rich history of the region.

Carry on to Elk Point which, in 2009, rebuilt its former train station as an EcoCentre and Tourism Office and provides a great staging area close to all services and amenities. Lindbergh offers a welcoming staging area to take a break in this portion of the trail with follows along the North Saskatchewan River. Heinsburg provides a beautiful start or finish to Alberta’s Iron Horse Trail as you begin or end your adventure at their historical Railway Park.


Called “Mile Zero” on the trail, Abilene Junction is the centre of the three trail branches.


There are various day-use rest stops along the trail found at smaller centres and former rail yards. They are limited to an outhouse, fire pit and picnic table.


The first rest stop heading east is Edwand, a former stop along the rail line. Next up is Bellis, a small hamlet and home of the Bellis Heritage Corner Shoppe, a great place to browse and grab a snack. Continuing east through the Village of Vilna where you’ll find the oldest operating pool hall in Alberta, you’ll come to Spedden. Here you can rest awhile, fuel up your machines and yourself.


The historic rest stop at Anshaw is well worth your time and when you get to Bonnyville you can be swept away to earlier times through museum displays of a trapper’s cabin, a one room schoolhouse and antique farm equipment. Take a hike and enjoy watchable wildlife at Jessie Lake Trail, south of town. Further east, at Fort Kent, stop for a tour of the LARA agricultural interpretive grounds.


There is a small rest stop in the farming community of Owlseye. East of St. Paul, the trail enters a quiet valley wilderness passing Edouardville and then into Dog Rump Creek valley and the Armistice rest stop. Travelling eastward, the trail passes oilfield well sites, farm fields, valleys and forests towards the Muriel rest stop.

Be prepared

Consider yourself among the newest adventurers on this historic route.

Through a number of cattle gates along the trail, grazing is permitted from the first of April to the final day of October. The Texas gates are 72″ in width.

There are many campgrounds accessible from the trail, these include Waskatenau Pine Creek, Smoky Lake Golf Resort, Smoky Lake RV Park, Bellis Beach Campground, Bonnie Lake Vilna Rec. Area, St. Paul Overnight Trailer Park, St. Paul Iron Horse Trail Campground and Heinsburg Water Tower Campsite.

Please click here for directions to the staging areas for loading, unloading and parking.

If you want to be even more prepared, you can buy AIHT clothing at the AIHT Store.

Need a place to stay overnight? Check out these useful links: