A backcountry permit is mandatory for anyone planning an overnight trip into the backcountry of Banff National Park.


Helpful resources include these trip ideas and the brochure Backcountry Trails in Banff National Park.



Purchase your backcountry permit online or by calling 1-877-RESERVE (1-877-737-3783)

  • Fees
  • A non-refundable reservation fee applies to all bookings: $11.50 online reservations; $13.50 telephone reservations.
  • Maximum group size is 10 people, 5 tents.
  • The maximum length of stay at one site is 3 consecutive days.

All backcountry visitors must make reservations for overnight backcountry trips. A backcountry permit is also required for random camping and can only be obtained in person at Parks Canada visitor centres in Banff and Lake Louise, or by calling 403-762-1556 in Banff or 403-522-1264 in Lake Louise. A non-refundable reservation fee applies to all bookings.


Climbing, mountaineering and glacier travel
  • Mountaineers require a backcountry permit to bivouac, and may do so in non-vegetated areas only.
  • Alternatively, the Alpine Club of Canada (403-678-3200) operates several mountaineering huts in the park that are ideally located for mountaineers.
  • Parks Mountain Safety



National park passes 

You will require a National Park Pass to enter Banff National Park.

Fishing permits

To fish in Banff National Park, everyone aged 16 or older is required to have a National Park Fishing Permit. Children under 16 do not require a permit but must be accompanied by a permit holder. These permits can be purchased at a Parks Canada visitor centre or at most local retail outlets that sell angling supplies.

  • Fishing is permitted during specified seasons in most back country lakes, rivers and creeks, however some areas are catch and release only. 
  • Seasonal closures may be in effect for some lakes to allow fish populations to recover from over-fishing and these are generally not posted at the lake, so you must be familiar with the regulations.
  • Always dispose of fish offal in fast moving streams or the deep part of a lake from which the fish was caught. Never dispose of fish along stream sides, lake shores or move fish or fish parts between water bodies. 
  • For regulations, view our digital brochure or pick up a copy of the Fishing Regulations Summary brochure from any Parks Canada visitor centres. 


Take a hike

Review the backpacking equipment checklist, safety and etiquette, trail conditions, closures and other pertinent information sections before your trip and enjoy!


Camp in designated campgrounds as indicated on your Backcountry Permit and use the tent pads provided to minimize impact on vegetation. The maximum length of stay for any one campground is three consecutive nights.



Tell us your story! We'd love to hear about your journey. Send a message, or a photo that you took during your trip, to Banff National Park’s Facebook or Twitter channels.