Poboktan Creek, Jasper, Alberta - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 09-21-2016, 02:48 AM Thread Starter
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Default Poboktan Creek, Jasper, Alberta

Just did Poboktan Creek Sept 17-18, 2016. Trail condition very good, no washouts. Muddy sections but that's it. First campsite (Poboktan) at 5 km is still good shape. Pads are good, three wood picnic tables present. Bear pole only has two cables left, both with plastic 5 gallon buckets attached. Second campsite (The Falls) at 8.2 km is very good shape. Pads are well dispersed and quite far away from picnic tables and bear pole. Tables are all in good shape, one overlooks the falls is the best one there ! Bear pole has 4 cables on it, but hooks are getting wrecked by idiots hanging their entire pack from them. Here is the issue:
Literature, trip reports and Canadian Rockies Trail Guide all say Poboktan Campsite is 7.2 km from the trailhead; and the falls campsite is either 11.2 or 12 km from the trailhead. The actual metal sign at the trailhead says Poboktan Campsite is 8 km. NONE of these are even close ! My GPS showed the Maligne Pass junction at 4 km, followed by Poboktan campsite at 5 km ! We reached the falls campsite at exactly 8.2 km from the trailhead parking lot. Just to confirm, I zeroed my GPS for the downward trip; cleared my waypoints and track-log, and on the hike out it read exactly 8.2 km again. I use a Magellan Explorist GPS and it has been deadly accurate for the 7 years I've used it. Now I understand a little variation or discrepancy; but 8.2 km instead of 12 km ?? The distances on this hike are just wrong !
That all being said, the Falls campsite is well worth it. No switch-backs, no steep grades, and only a few up-and-down spots on this mostly gravel trail. Trail remains in the woods most of the time, and comes alongside Poboktan Creek several times for water replenishment. The first (Poboktan) campsite is perfect for a lunch stop. The only less-than-perfect comment I can think of is the Falls campsite is quite a ways up from the creek; and getting water necessitates a steep scramble to get down to the water. But that is a quibble; the view of the falls is superb and totally worth the trip !
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 09-21-2016, 09:28 AM
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 09-21-2016, 02:01 PM
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Same as Dieter says. I don't have GPS data on me, but I dayhiked Maligne Pass and remember taking 1.5 hrs to junction; considering it being flat and undemanding walk, 4km would have taken ~45 - 50 mins only

It is hard to believe that ALL literature, Patton/Robinson bible and online reports are wrong, and by such a wide margin, while single GPS is right.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 09-21-2016, 02:31 PM
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Just to bring some old-school perspective (pedantry?) to the question, examine the topo map of lower Poboktan Creek. The distance to the junction appears to be about 6 km and it's another 6 km or so to Waterfalls. The 5th ed. of CRTG, the latest one I have, says it's 6.2 to the junction and 12 to Waterfalls (measured from the warden station), and I believe these readings were made with a calibrated surveyor's wheel (it's another 5 km to Avalanche and 4 more to Maligne Pass). These distances all conform with my 'calibrated' backpacking pace of 4 km/hour.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 09-24-2016, 12:59 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah, I know ! We were hiking with a young lady on her first backpacking trip, with lots of short stops for pack adjustments and boot-lace re-tying ! My point is we reached the Poboktan camp in about two hours, and there is NO WAY that was 8 km with the slower pace the young lady was setting... Literature says anything between 7 and 7.2 km to Poboktan; but metal sign at trailhead says 8 km. And we reach it in two hours ? Weird. At any rate, we simply cracked on and reached the falls, and everyone was glad we camped up there ! Awesome trip, even with the rain and snow !
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 09-24-2016, 03:51 PM
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 02:28 PM Thread Starter
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Hello there. Yes, I have NEVER set my units to miles ! (I wouldn't even know what a mile is ) Like I said, I have used my Magellan for 7 years now; for biking, sailing, hiking and kayaking. Never let me down, and always deadly accurate. I'll chalk this one up to heavy cloud cover and mixed rain and snow reducing GPS accuracy... Weird....
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 09-29-2016, 11:40 PM
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this will at least put an end to what the distance is to Maligne Pass Jnct. As u can see from the screen grab from topo software the distance AS THE CROW FLIES IS 5.43KM. And as we all know the distance will be significantly larger than that. So it would be safe to say the 4km is deadly wrong. One could do the same on Google Earth...the result would be the same
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