Decommissioning of Chancellor Peak Campground
Here is some information on the planned decommissioning of Chancellor Peak Campground, Yoho National Park
As a result of significant damage caused by 2012 spring flooding and the strong likelihood of future flooding events, Chancellor Peak Campground near the west boundary of Yoho National Park will be decommissioned beginning this winter 2012 /13.
In June 2012, intense rainfall, in conjunction with spring melt in the alpine after a record winter snowfall, resulted in extreme high water in the Kicking Horse River. Chancellor Peak Campground was completely flooded, significantly damaging the campground bridge’s foundation. Flooding also created a new river channel through the campground itself.
This is not the first time that flooding has damaged Chancellor Peak Campground, which is located on a gravel bed island in the Kicking Horse River. In 2001, flooding damage resulted in a lengthy closure of the campground.
Flooding creates a new river channel through the campground. © Parks Canada
This winter all of the campground’s infrastructure such as buildings, structures, campsites, and signs will be removed for reuse elsewhere. Removal of the Chancellor Bridge, the paved road from the bridge into the campground, along with site restoration and landscaping, will occur later.
The access road from the Trans-Canada Highway to the campground’s damaged bridge will remain and be gated to allow for Canadian Pacific maintenance and Parks Canada emergency access.
Why is this being done?
Re-opening Chancellor Peak Campground, has been determined to be cost prohibitive. There is no guarantee that mitigations to prevent future flooding, including diverting the current river channel, would ensure the future stability of the site. There are also environmental concerns associated with changing the course of the river.
Full decommissioning is the responsible thing for Parks Canada to do from both financial and ecological perspectives. With the changing river carving new channels, Parks Canada must ensure that the former campground site is not a source of contamination or sedimentation.
Parks Canada remains strongly committed to providing diverse and quality camping opportunities for visitors in Yoho National Park.
For more information