Aquatic invasive species:

You can prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species!

Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) are non-native plants, animals, and diseases. Many AIS are harmful to freshwater ecosystems. AIS reproduce fast, they rarely have natural predators and often out-compete native freshwater species. Learn more.

Banff National Park is taking extra steps to protect park waters from harmful aquatic invasive species, including invasive mussels and whirling disease.

It is mandatory to:

Clean, Drain and Dry your watercraft and water-related gear before entering any river, lake or stream:

  • Clean all mud, sand, plant, and animal materials from your watercraft and water-related gear.


  • Drain coolers, buckets, compartments, and other items that may hold water on land before leaving the waterbody.


  • Dry all watercraft and water-related gear coming from outside of British Columbia, Alberta, Yukon and Northwest Territories for 30 days; those coming from inside British Columbia, Alberta, Yukon and Northwest Territories are required to dry for 48 hours. When entering a new waterbody within Yoho, Kootenay, and Banff national parks, watercraft and water-related gear must be dried for 48 hours.

Obtain an AIS Prevention Permit for all watercraft and water-related gear before entering a waterbody in Banff, Yoho and Kootenay national parks.

  • When entering any new waterbody within Banff, Yoho and Kootenay national parks, users of watercraft and water-related gear must obtain a new AIS Prevention Permit.

Motorized watercraft:

Lake Minnewanka is the only waterbody in Banff, Yoho, or Kootenay national parks where boats with motors, both gas and electric, are allowed. There is an unloading ramp and parking area for boats and trailers. There are no public boat docks in the park.

It is mandatory to:

Clean Drain Dry and obtain a Parks Canada AIS Prevention Inspection Permit for all motorized watercraft before launching.

You can obtain an inspection permit at the Lake Minnewanka inspection station, located 6 km from the town of Banff along the Minnewanka Loop Road.

The Lake Minnewanka inspection station will be operational:
  • Shoulder seasons (May 20 to June 4 and September 6 to October 10): 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. 7 days per week or as operationally required
  • Peak season (June 5 to September 5): 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. 7 days per week or as operationally required

Non-motorized watercraft and water recreational gear:

Anyone launching non-motorized watercraft such as canoes, kayaks, paddleboards, inflatables, and water-related gear are required to Clean Drain Dry their equipment and obtain an AIS Prevention Self-certification Permit or Inspection Permit every time you enter a new lake, river or stream in Banff, Yoho and Kootenay national parks.

It is mandatory to:

Clean Drain Dry non-motorized watercraft or water-related gear and complete a Self-certification Permit before recreating in any body of water in Banff, Yoho, or Kootenay national parks.

If you are unable to meet the Clean Drain Dry requirements indicated on the AIS Prevention Self-certification Permit, you are prohibited from launching a watercraft in Banff, Yoho and Kootenay national parks until the permit conditions are met, or your watercraft or water-related gear have been inspected at a Parks Canada watercraft inspection station.

The Lake Louise Inspection Station (non-motorized watercraft) is located at the Lake Louise Overflow parking lot in Banff National Park, and is open:

  • Shoulder seasons (May 20 to June 4 and September 6 to October 10): 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. 7 days per week or as operationally required.
  • Peak season (June 5 to September 5): 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. 7 days per week or as operationally required.

The Lake Minnewanka inspection station (non-motorized and motorize watercraft) is located along the Minnewanka Loop Road in Banff National Park, and is open:

  • Shoulder seasons (May 20 to June 4 and September 6 to October 10): 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. 7 days per week or as operationally required.
  • Peak season (June 5 to September 5): 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. 7 days / week or as operationally required.

Self-certification stations in Banff, Yoho, and Kootenay national parks

Banff National Park
Locations:
Watercraft inspection stations
  • Lake Louise Inspection Station- Located in the Lake Louise overflow parking lot approximately 7 km southeast from the town of Lake Louise on Highway 1
  • Lake Minnewanka Inspection Station- Located along the Minnewanka Loop Road, approximately 6 km northeast from the town of Banff
Banff Visitor Centres
Lake Louise Visitor Centre
Park gates
  • Niblock Gate (Lake Louise 93N)
  • David Thompson (Sask. Crossing 93N)
Two Jack Lakeside Campground
Lake Louise Campground
Baker Creek Chalets
Boom Lake Trailhead
Bourgeau Lake Trailhead
Bow Lake - Day Use Area and near Num-Ti-Ja
Cascade Ponds
Fish Creek Trailhead
Glacier Lake Trailhead
Hector Lake
Helen Lake Trailhead
Herbert Lake
Howse Trailhead
Johnson Lake
Lake Louise (Lake) Canoe Launch and kiosk
Lake Minnewanka Boat Dock
Lake Minnewanka Loop Road
Moraine Lake
Mosquito Campground Kiosk
Mosquito Creek Trailhead
Rampart Campground
Redearth Creek Trailhead
Smith/Copper Lake Trailhead
Taylor Lake Trailhead
The Bow River - Castle Junction, 5 Mile, Bow Falls, Golf Course Road and Station Restaurant access points, Trans-Canada Highway across from Morant’s Curve (un-named)
Two Jack Lake and reservoir
Vermillion Lakes
Vista Lake Trailhead
Waterfowl Lakes (Campground, Kiosk and Viewpoint (pullout))
Yoho National Park
Locations:
Yoho National Park Visitor Centre
Park Gate
Kicking Horse Campground
Lake O'Hara Bus Station
Emerald Lake
Faeder Lake
Finn Creek
Field Pond
Wapta Lake
Hoodoo campground
Kootenay National Park
Locations:
Radium Hot Springs Visitor Centre
Kootenay Park Gate
Redstreak Campground
Dolly Varden picnic area
Kootenay River picnic area
McLeod Meadows campground (Dog Lake trailhead)
Olive Lake
Simpson River trailhead
Vermillion Crossing picnic area<
Numa Falls (or Marble Canyon)

More questions? Consult the FAQ for more information.