Catch and possession limits
Mountain National Parks in Alberta and British-Columbia
April 1, 2017 - March 31, 2018
There are zero possession limits for many native species. You must correctly identify your catch. If you are not sure, release it immediately.
Fishing regulations summary (download a printable version, 762 KB)
2017 changes to fishing regulations (download a printable version, 64 KB)
Kootenay, Banff, Yoho, Mount Revelstoke and Glacier national parks
All park waters
Waterton Lakes National Park
Belly and Waterton rivers and tributaries, Goat Lake, Upper, Middle
and Lower Waterton Lakes
|Lake and mountain whitefish
Jasper National Park
Banff National Park
|All species not mentioned below||0|
|Arctic grayling, rainbow trout, brown trout, brook trout, lake trout, northern pike, mountain whitefish, lake whitefish||2|
|Cutthroat trout - All other park waters||2|
|Maximum daily catch and possession limit||2|
Note: If a fish has been filleted, two fillets will be considered one fish.
It is unlawful to:
- continue fishing on any day after having caught and retained the maximum daily catch and possession limit.
- possess more than 2 game fish at one time.
Give a released fish the best chance for survival by following these suggestions:
- Minimize the time you play a fish. A fish played too long may not survive even if released. Remember to always bring fish up from depth slowly. Fish brought up too quickly will rupture their air bladders and die.
- Be gentle, keeping the fish in the water at all times when handling and releasing.
- Handle the fish with bare, wet hands. Keep fingers away from the gills and do not squeeze; this may cause internal injury, gill or scale damage.
- Remove the hook gently with needle-nosed pliers. If the hook is deep, cut the leader rather than pulling the hook out. The hook will decompose in time. Most fish survive with hooks in them.
- Continue to hold the fish in the water, gently moving it back and forth. This moves water past the gills and will help revive it. For flowing waters, face the fish upstream. When the fish begins to struggle, let it go.
- If the fish is bleeding excessively, it will likely not survive if released. Kill it and include as part of your catch if permitted.
- The use of barbless hooks is recommended to make release easier. Hooks can be made barbless by flattening the barb with needle-nosed pliers.
- Single hooks are recommended to release fish more easily.
- Continuing to angle for trout in waters exceeding 18° C reduces the ability of these fish to survive the ‘catch and
Parks Canada has been advised that elevated mercury concentrations have been found in fish in some Mountain National Park waters. Therefore, Parks Canada, in consultation with Health Canada, has established consumption guidelines for women of reproductive age and children (see Table 1).
Mercury is a toxin that can affect human health. It can come from natural sources (e.g. soils and sediments) or sources outside the Mountain Parks (e.g. transported through the atmosphere). It can be passed up the food chain and become concentrated in top predators (e.g. Lake trout, Northern pike).
Mercury data does not exist for all fish species in all park waters and fish mercury concentrations may change over time. To be precautionary, anglers may wish to apply the following guidelines to all sport fish caught in park waters (see Table 2).
Table 1: Consumption guidelines
(under 15 yrs)
|Lake||Species||# of 113 g (4 oz.)
|# of 70 g (2.5 oz.)
|Moab - JNP||Cisco*||7 / month||5 / month|
|Patricia - JNP||Lake Trout||4 / month||3 / month|
|Sassenach - JNP||Lake Trout||4 / month||3 / month|
|Bow - BNP||Lake Trout||4 / month||3 / month|
|Hector - BNP||Lake Trout||4 / month||3 / month|
|Outram - BNP||Lake Trout||4 / month||3 / month|
|Waterton Lakes||Lake Trout / Lake Whitefish||4 / month||3 / month|
Table 2: Precautionary consumption advice for game fish in waters not mentioned above
(under 15 yrs)
|Species||# of 113 g (4 oz.)
|# of 70 g (2.5 oz.)
|Game fish - general||4 / month||3 / month|
* Please note that consumption advice has been given for a species which is not legal to possess. Anglers should check the Catch & Possession Limits of these Fishing Regulations to ensure that all fish which are kept are legal to possess. Cisco closely resemble Mountain whitefish; there are no Mountain whitefish in Moab Lake.
** A 100g serving is approximately the size of a deck of standard playing cards.
For further information contact:
Banff National Park: 403-762-1550
Yoho, Kootenay National Parks: 250-343-6108
Jasper National Park: 780-852-6176
Waterton Lakes National Park: 403-859-2224
Mount Revelstoke/Glacier National Parks: 250-837-7500