Cleanup on Aisle 3…

Cleanup on Aisle 3…

From the Flood to Opening Day – What takes place?

Part 1- The Cleanup Phase

One of the most common questions that we are asked when talking about the Restoration of Mt. Kidd & Lorette is “What has to happen to bring the golf courses back?”.  Normally after a little bit of time talking about this a second question comes up…”Where did you even start?”  Believe you me that when our team was looking at images like the three we are showing you below, we all wondered the same thing.  How is this going to work?  Is this even do-able?  How did this happen?   Where do we start?

Thankfully we had a voice of reassurance enter into our lives in early July of 2013. Gary Browning, the architect of this restoration, was called in to look at our “war zone” and reassure us that it was actually very do-able and broke it down for us into the different phases that would need to take place in order to bring these two golfing gems back to it’s many supporters.  We thought it might be of interest to all of you to go through the different stages of the golf course restoration from the time of the flood to the time to when we will be laying sod and getting ready to have golfers come back to visit!  We will start a series of blogs that uncovers the different phases of the restoration.  The first phase which we will cover here in this blog is the Clean up phase which actually took place during early August of 2014.

Where to start…where to start??

It was a massive undertaking to address the damage done by Mother Nature to our two beautiful golf courses.   Here is a brief explanation and display of images to describe and show what took place out here during the months of August- early November in 2014.

a) Backfilling of Erosion caused by flood waters – Bony, rocky material that was deposited by the flood waters around various locations of the golf course were excavated and used to backfill the large erosion cavities that existed after the flood waters receded.


b) Picking up and stockpiling of deadfall brought by flood waters.  Thousands of trees were brought to the golf course from upstream and also from on property by the incredible force of the floodwaters.

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c) Dredging of ponds and creeks to remove excess silt deposited by floodwaters.  Materials were moved from the ponds and creeks and stockpiled to be used later in the restoration for things like backfilling and irrigation bedding.

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d) Removal of massive deposits of silt, rock, and debris from fairways and stockpiling material.  A great deal of this material was relocated to areas where erosion took place and needed to be backfilled. These three images show the “normal” level of the fairway on the left and the amount of debris that was carried by flood waters on the right.

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e) Cultivation of all fairways and rough by a giant rototiller called a Seppi M – allowed for the project to create a better organic layer by rototilling the grass layer and underlying topsoil.  Provided for a much better medium to rough shape holes once the cultivation was done.

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f) Sand removed from Bunkers and stockpiled in various locations of the golf course to be used later during the restoration for things like irrigation bedding and the root zone for tee box construction

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g) Layers removed from greens – On existing greens, an excavator individually removed the sod layer, sand (rootzone layer) and drainage rock layer to be stockpiled and used for different parts of the restoration.  This stockpiling and use of materials already on site has had a positive impact to both the environment and the bottom line of the project!


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h) Restoration of bridges and service roadsaround the property so that our team could move around the golf course to do their work

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The fall of 2014 was an incredibly uplifting time for our team because we had a chance to see what a skilled group of people could do to our “war zone” in a relatively short amount of time in the clean up phase.  It laid the foundation for the incredible work being done in 2016 to bring both Mt. Lorette and Mt. Kidd back to it’s adoring fans and supporters.

Stay tuned for the stages involved in building a green out here in Kananaskis!!



Looks pretty crowded out there, do you need a marshall so you are assured of getting your “I kept the pace ball marker”?
I’m ready, willing and able.

    Bob Paley

    Haha!! Love it George! As it relates to the pace of the construction, so far the team is under time and keeping up to the group ahead of them (and maybe pushing them a bit!!). Let’s hope that mother nature allows for that to continue! Hope that you and Susan are well my friend and that life is treating you and your family unbelievably well!


Hi There. I had the pleasure of playing Mt Lorret the first week or two of the courses initial opening. I believe the course could have opened the previous year but they wanted to make sure the course was in impeccable condition. And indeed it was. The tee boxes were manicured like greens. My initial experience of our jewel in the Rocky Mountains will long be remembered and I really forward to playing the courses in the near future. My house flooded as well and I have a small appreciation of the work that is required for the rebuilding of our provincial treasure. Keep up the good work!

    Bob Paley

    Thanks so much Ken for your kind words. We are very sorry to hear about your home and hope that things are back on track with it. We are looking forward to creating the same experience for our guests in 2018 that you experienced when the courses first opened!! Really appreciate you reaching out!


Had the pleasure of playing both courses, the last time in the year before the flood. So glad to have had the opportunity, and so relieved when reconstruction was approved. A question: what is being done to prevent this happening again? Are berms being built up to protect the course from future high water levels? Looking forward to playing in 2018!

    Bob Paley

    Thanks for the comment Cindy! We appreciate the support and kind words. To answer your question about berms and river protection, yes there is a river construction program that is taking place at the same time as the golf course restoration which is intended to better protect the golf courses than pre-flood. Looking forward to seeing you in 2018!!!

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