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Banff National Park

Information for Visitors 

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Johnston Canyon Trail Closure | Long Weekend Traffic Advisory | WonderFall
Site Guidelines for Lake Louise Ski Area | Snarl Peak wildfire

Johnston Canyon Trail Closure

The Johnston Canyon Trail, located 22km west of the Banff townsite (or 5km east of Castle Junction) on the Bow Valley Parkway, will be closed for extensive restoration and infrastructure upgrades from September 15 until the end of October 2015 (weather permitting). The closure includes the walkway to the upper and lower falls at the Johnston Canyon day use area.

All businesses and commercial accommodations on the Bow Valley Parkway remain accessible during the Johnston Canyon Trail network closure.
Alternative nearby hiking options include, Marble Canyon, Silverton Falls, Rockbound Lake and the Paint Pots. The Ink Pots will remain accessible via Moose Meadows.

For information on trails in Banff National Park

Thank you for your patience while we make improvements to visitor experience and public safety.

Long Weekend Traffic Advisory

Heavy holiday traffic is expected in the Lake Louise and Moraine Lake area this long weekend. Delays and limited parking are expected during peak travel hours. Arrive before 9:00 a.m. or after 5:00 p.m. to avoid delays. For a list of excellent destinations within 30 minutes of Lake Louise consult our web site.

WonderFall - September 5 to October 12

Feast your eyes on the changing colours of the forest and enjoy unique activities, events, programs and outdoor recreation to celebrate the season. Parks Canada is pleased to offer a free return shuttle service from the Lake Louise Overflow Parking Lot to the Moraine Lake parking lot. WonderFall

Parks Canada Approves Site Guidelines for Lake Louise Ski Area 

August 1, 2015 Lake Louise, Alberta - Blake Richards, Member of Parliament for Wild Rose, on behalf of the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of the Environment and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, today announced the approval of the Lake Louise Ski Area Site Guidelines for Development and Use. The approved Guidelines, developed in collaboration with the Lake Louise Ski Area, include major gains in conservation, visitor experience and education for one of Canada’s most iconic winter destinations.

Snarl Peak wildfire update - August 3, 2015

Aug 2, 2015

What’s happening:

On the afternoon of Sunday August 2, 2015 Parks Canada fire crews successfully conducted a burnout operation on the Snarl Peak wildfire to remove fuel ahead of the fire. This operation removed unburned fuels adjacent to natural barriers and will help to contain the fire. The current size of the fire is approximately 700 hectares.

High temperatures, extremely low humidity and wind over the last few days have caused an increase in activity and growth on the fire, approximately 80 km north of the Town of Banff in a remote area of the Clearwater River valley. Over the next few days, fire personnel will continue to manage the fire by reinforcing the containment lines (natural barriers, sprinkler lines).

Parks Canada is working directly with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry to manage this wildfire and mitigate impacts on downwind areas.


An area closure is in place until further notice from the lower Clearwater River valley from Roaring Creek/Martin Lake junction on the west to the eastern park boundary near Indianhead creek on the east.

Please check the following website for the most current closure information

Additional information

  • The first priority of the Parks Canada Agency Fire Management program is to ensure public safety and to protect natural and cultural values at risk. The program is also designed to restore and maintain the ecological condition of the park ecosystem.
  • Although the fire is in a remote region of the park, motorists may see helicopters and fire crews in the area and occasional localized smoke.
  • After a short period of cooler temperatures and a small amount of precipitation, the Banff Field Unit has returned to EXTREME fire danger. Forest fuels are dry, particularly in valley bottoms. Please be extra careful with all sources of flame and exercise appropriate caution at all times.
  • There is no fire ban in place for Banff, Yoho, Kootenay, or Jasper.

Next update: As new information is available.

Park visitors are reminded to report all wildfires in Banff, Yoho or Kootenay national park by calling Banff Dispatch at 403-762-4506, or 911.

Fire Communications Officer, Banff Field Unit