Areas of Waterton Lakes National Park remain closed due to safety hazards and infrastructure damage from the Kenow Wildfire. Visit our What's open page for an up-to-date list of open areas.
Waterton's scenic parkways
If scenery and wildlife appeal to you, drive one of Waterton's scenic parkways. All have pulloffs and viewpoints for safe viewing opportunities and offer the chance to discover more about this special place.
Entrance ParkwayThe Entrance Parkway runs from the entrance gate to the townsite and provides scenic views overlooking the Waterton Valley. It starts out on the prairie and follows the Waterton Lakes chain past the Prince of Wales Hotel before ending at the townsite. It is one of the best roads in the park for viewing wildlife.
Red Rock Parkway
From July 5, 2019, the entire Red Rock Parkway is open for non-motorized use (hikers and bikers)
The Red Rock Parkway travels 15 km up the Blakiston Valley through rolling grasslands and ends at Red Rock Canyon. It is the best place to experience Waterton's classic prairie meeting mountain landscape. During your trip, be sure to stop at the scenic pull-outs, many of which have interpretive displays. At the end of the parkway, a short self-guided trail loops around the canyon. In June, the wildflowers are spectacular along this road. It is also a great place for wildlife viewing. The parkway is narrow and may not be suitable for larger motor homes.
Subject to closures in 2019. See our What's Open page for the latest information
The Akamina Parkway is a winding mountain road which runs 16 km along the Cameron Valley and ends at Cameron Lake. Along the way, stop at the national historic site commemorating Western Canada's first oil well. Cameron Lake has an interpretive exhibit and a boat rental concession. A pleasant trail follows the western shore of the lake for 1.6 kilometres.
Chief Mountain Highway
The Chief Mountain Highway is the primary route between Waterton Lakes and Glacier national parks. The highway climbs from the grasslands near Maskinonge Lake to a viewpoint which offers a magnificent panorama of the Waterton and Blakiston valleys (Chief Mountain lookout). En route to the international border crossing, the highway passes through wetlands and the site of the Sofa Mountain wildfire. Travellers can continue across the international border past Chief Mountain to the community of St. Mary, on the boundary of Glacier National Park.
Bison Paddock Loop Road
Bison Paddock Loop Road is closed until further notice. Bison Paddock overlook remains open.
Located just inside the park boundary, off Highway 6, the Bison Paddock Loop Road provides an opportunity to see these magnificent animals in their natural grassland habitat. For your safety, you must remain in your vehicle.
Bison Paddock Overlook
Discover the subtle beauty of the rough fescue prairies and enjoy a short walk to an outstanding view of the valley and mountains. Waterton Lakes is the only national park in Canada that protects rough fescue, a grass that is highly nutritious food for plains bison.
There are currently no bison in Waterton Lakes National Park. Parks Canada relocated the bison herd before the Kenow Wildfire to keep the animals safe. The bison handling facilities in Waterton sustained some damage and the grassland in the Bison Paddock burned. We are assessing how to fix the handling facility and are planning to eventually bring the bison back. It is too early to provide a time frame on the return of the bison as this depends on the natural recovery of the native grassland that make up their habitat.