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Grande Cache
Town of Grande Cache
Highway 40 through Grande Cache
Highway 40 through Grande Cache
Country  Canada
Province  Alberta
Region Northern Alberta
Census division 18
Municipal district Municipal District of Greenview No. 16
 • New town September 1, 1966
 • Town September 1, 1983
 • Land 34.97 km2 (13.50 sq mi)
1,220 m (4,000 ft)
 • Total 3,571
 • Density 102.1/km2 (264/sq mi)
Time zone UTC−7 (MST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−6 (MDT)
Postal code
T0E 0Y0
Area code(s) +1-780

Grande Cache is a town in west-central Alberta, Canada, located 145 kilometres (90 mi) northwest of Hinton and 435 kilometres (270 mi) west of Edmonton. It is located in the Municipal District of Greenview No. 16, between Highway 40 and the Smoky River, at the northern border of Alberta's Rockies. The town is the gateway to the Willmore Wilderness Park.


The New Town of Grande Cache was created by the Order in Council 1605/66 of the Alberta Government 1966-09-01. The purpose of creating a new town was to open the area for the development of coal mines. New town status allowed the town to use the Alberta Government as a guarantor for debt.

Construction of the town began in 1969. By 1971 a hospital, schools, stores, and the first homes were built.

Grande Cache received Town status by the Order in Council 749/83 on September 1, 1983.

The town suffered a boom-bust cycle due to the dependence on a single employer that depended on a single commodity: coal. In an attempt to diversify the economy additional industries were encouraged to develop in the area. This included a wood chip plant and a federal prison operated by the Correctional Service of Canada. In recent years, wilderness tourism is an increasing industry.


Grande Cache Lake
Grande Cache Lake

The town is built on a plateau that is just below the subalpine level of the Rocky Mountains. The town site is surrounded by three valleys: to the north is the Smoky River; to the west is the Sulphur River; to the south is Victor Lake and Grande Cache Lake. To the east of town is Grande Mountain.


Grande Cache experiences a subarctic climate (Köppen climate classification Dfc).


In the 2016 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, the Town of Grande Cache recorded a population of 3,571 living in 1,296 of its 1,759 total private dwellings, a -17.3% change from its 2011 population of 4,319. With a land area of 34.97 km2 (13.50 sq mi), it had a population density of 102.1/km2 (264/sq mi) in 2016.

In the 2011 Census, the Town of Grande Cache had a population of 4,319 living in 1,563 of its 1,752 total dwellings, a 14.2% change from its 2006 population of 3,783. With a land area of 35.48 km2 (13.70 sq mi), it had a population density of 121.7/km2 (315/sq mi) in 2011.


  • Grande Cache Recreation Centre
  • Grande Cache Golf and Country Club
  • Willmore Wilderness Park
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