The Verdant Creek Wildfire in Kootenay National Park and Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park is currently being held. Parks Canada's wildfire operations are now in the monitoring stage.

Parks Canada thanks everyone for their cooperation, patience and support throughout the Verdant Creek wildfire.

Update | FAQ | Area closures | Other fires

Information update

Frequently asked questions - Updated September 22, 2017

The Verdant Creek Wildfire is currently being held. Parks Canada Verdant Creek wildfire operations are now in the monitoring stage. Parks Canada will continue to actively monitor the Verdant Creek wildfire using helicopters and ground crews. Park visitors may continue to see some smoke and helicopters in the area.

Where is the fire?

The Verdant Creek wildfire is active in Kootenay National Park and Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park. The fire remains on the west side of the Continental Divide and east of Highway 93 South.

How large is the Verdant Creek wildfire?

The fire is currently estimated to be approximately 17,644 hectares; however it is difficult to determine an exact fire size on an ongoing basis.

What is open?

All facilities in Banff and Kootenay national parks are open, except for backcountry campgrounds and trails within the area closures.

What areas are closed as a result of this fire?

To ensure the safety of the public, some backcountry areas were closed in the vicinity of the fire.  Although most of these areas are now open, some closures will remain in place until they are assessed and deemed safe to enter. For a complete list of existing area closures visit:

For information about closures in Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park visit:

How long will the area closures be in place?

To ensure visitor safety, the area closures will remain in place until further notice. These closures are mandatory and visitors are prohibited from entering the area.  As there may be changes, visitors are encouraged to check this site regularly.

How do fires affect wildlife?

Fire is an essential element in the creation of diverse habitats for numerous wildlife species. A fire over a large area leaves many pockets of unburned vegetation. These unburned islands provide areas where wildlife can move out of the path of the fire. During a fire, many animals are able to flee, and smaller animals may seek refuge underground. Almost immediately after a fire, many wildlife species including birds, mammals and insects are often seen in burned areas.

Fire opens up the forest canopy and allows more sunlight to reach understory plants, increasing productivity and biodiversity. Plant-life determines which animals will inhabit an area. Many species of plants begin to sprout soon after a fire has passed, and over time, the quality of habitat for a number of wildlife species is greatly improved.

Is there life after fire?

Fire recycles nutrient stored in live and dead vegetation by converting it into mineral-rich ash. After a fire, pine cones pop open from fire’s heat, releasing their seeds. New growth sprouts from the roots of burned shrubs. Flowers bloom and grasslands are reborn. Animals forage in the lush new growth. Over time, fires create a patchwork of burned and unburned vegetation. This diverse mix of habitats is favoured by wildlife and supports many species.

Area closures:

Banff National Park

Kootenay National Park