Waterton Lakes National Park is open and ready to welcome visitors in 2018.

While some areas of the park were affected by the September 2017 Kenow Wildfire, Parks Canada is committed to providing fun and memorable visitor experiences in Waterton Lakes National Park in summer 2018.

Parks Canada’s staff has been working hard to assess and reduce wildfire-related hazards on trails and backcountry facilities in Waterton Lakes National Park. Trail crews have repaired damaged and destroyed infrastructure (benches and small footbridges) and assessed, cut, and cleared fallen and burned trees.

As a result of this work, Parks Canada has reopened over 50 kilometres of previously closed trails and three backcountry campgrounds in Waterton Lakes National Park. Areas now reopened include the Bertha Falls, Bertha Lake, Crandell Lake Loop, Horseshoe Basin, and Lakeshore trails. The portion of the Red Rock Parkway open to non-motorized use (biking and hiking) has been extended – from Bellevue Trailhead to Coppermine Creek.

In addition, the Bertha Bay, Bertha Lake and Boundary Bay backcountry campgrounds have also reopened (see the park map).

The Entrance Road and adjacent facilities, townsite, Waterton lakes and Chief Mountain Highway are also open.

Visitor safety is a priority for Parks Canada. Backcountry travel always comes with inherent risks. Visitors should be aware of their surroundings and prepared with the appropriate equipment during backcountry travel. Areas affected by the Kenow Wildfire may have increased hazards such as poor water quality, blowing dust, reduced shade, rock fall on steep slopes, and burned trees.

For more information to plan a safe and enjoyable experience, please see our visitor safety web pages.

Crandell Mountain Campground, Bear’s Hump Trail, Akamina Parkway, Cameron Lake Day-Use Area, Red Rock Parkway from Coppermine Creek to Red Rock Canyon, and recreational opportunities associated with these areas remain closed at this time. It is too early to provide a timeline for when these areas will re-open. To ensure safety, please respect all area closures. Entering a closed area can result in a fine.

For more information on what is available in Waterton Lakes National Park this year, please explore the topics below. Check back for updates.

Parks Canada facilities and services
Facility Access Status
Park gate Highway 5 Open - variable hours.
Visitor centre Townsite Parks Canada is operating a temporary visitor centre in the townsite at the Lion’s Hall on Fountain Avenue.
Winter hours Weekdays, 8 am to 12 noon and 1 pm to 4 pm. Information is provided at the park gate on weekends.
Waterton Townsite
Location Status
Cameron Bay cook shelter Open.
Community cook shelters - Waterton Avenue Open.
Cameron Falls washroom Open.
Fire Hall washroom Open.
A woman, going winter camping, pitching a tent in the snow.
Campground Access Status
Townsite Highway 5 Open April 13 to October 31, 2018 (weather permitting).
Pass Creek Highway 5 Open November 1 (winter camping).
Belly River Highway 6 Closed for the 2018 season.
Crandell Mountain Red Rock Parkway Closed.
Backcountry campgrounds Various Some backcounty campgrounds have reopened. Check here for a listing.

Reservations for Townsite Campground opened January 11, 2018 for stays from May 12, 2018 to September 9, 2018.

Day-use areas
Day-use area Access Status
Driftwood Beach Highway 5 Open.
Emerald Bay Highway 5 Open.
Hay Barn Highway 5 Open.
Knight's Lake Highway 5 Open.
Linnet Bay Highway 5 Open.
Maskinonge Highway 6 and 5 Open.
Pass Creek Highway 5 Open.
Cameron Lake Akamina Parkway Closed.
Little Prairie Akamina Parkway Closed.
McNeely's Akamina Parkway Closed.
Red Rock Canyon Red Rock Parkway Closed.
Lost Horse Creek Red Rock Parkway Closed.
Coppermine Creek Red Rock Parkway Closed.
Scenic drives and roads
Road Access Status
Chief Mountain Highway Highway 6 Open. (Chief Mountain border crossing open May 15 to September 30, 2018.)
Red Rock Parkway to Coppermine Creek Red Rock Parkway Open to non-motorized use (walking, biking etc.) to Coppermine Creek. Visitors should exercise caution as operational vehicle traffic will be present on the road. Access to this portion of the parkway may change depending on construction schedules.
Red Rock Parkway beyond Coppermine Creek to Red Rock Canyon day-use area Red Rock Parkway Closed.
Bison overlook to Bellevue / Horseshoe trailhead Highway 5 Open.
Bison Paddock Loop Road Highway 5 Closed.
Akamina Parkway Cameron Lake Closed.
Overlooks and lookouts
Overlook (road accessible) Access Status
Entrance Road Highway 5 Open.
Bison Paddock overlook Highway 6 Open.
Chief Mountain Highway 6 Open.
Maskinonge Highway 6 Open.
Prince of Wales hill Highway 5 Open.
Hiking and trails

Trails open in 2018

Check trail report for current conditions.

Trail Access Status
Bellevue Non-motorized access to trailhead via Red Rock Parkway Open.
Bertha Falls / Bertha Lake Waterton townsite Open.
Crandell Loop / Crandell Lake Waterton towsnite / Red Rock Parkway (non-motorized access) Open.
Crypt Lake - Open.
Horseshoe Basin / Oil Basin Highway 6 Open
Kootenai Brown Highway 5 Open.
Lakeshore (Waterton townsite to Canada-U.S.A. border) Waterton townsite Open.
Linnett Lake loop Highway 5 Open.
Prince of Wales hill Highway 5 Open.
Townsite loop Highway 5 and various locations in townsite Open.
Vimy Ridge (from Wishbone junction) Highway 6 Open.
Wishbone Highway 6 Open.

See our complete list of closed trails

Visitor safety

Visitor safety is a top priority for Parks Canada and large areas of Waterton Lakes National Park remain closed due to hazards following the Kenow Wildfire. For important information about safety while enjoying the park, explore the topics below.

More information

There is potential for high visitation to Waterton Lakes National Park this summer. Parks Canada encourages visitors to plan their trip ahead of time. Explore the links below for more information.