Where to ski and snowshoe

In Kootenay, the backcountry is right on your doorstep!

Some hiking trails are suitable for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing but the park is a natural area and travel is at your own risk. Parks Canada does not maintain or patrol winter trails in the park. Not all signed summer destinations are safe for winter travel, so check with a Parks Canada visitor centre for advice on safe and fun options.

Youth Groups: From November 15 to April 30 annually, custodial groups are subject to special policies and planning obligations. Learn more.

Winter services

Restrooms are open at popular backcountry trailheads all winter long. As always, there is no fuel or cell coverage in the park. Beautiful views and winter wildlife are plentiful. Please drive with care. Thank you!

Drive BC road report | 511 Alberta road report | Weather forecast

Did you know? The Banff-Windermere Parkway (Highway 93 South) is controlled for avalanches to ensure visitor safety and reduce the frequency of road closures.

Avalanche safety

Be aware that cell phone coverage is not reliable in the Park.

Avalanche season in the mountains extends from November to June, and even a short walk can take you into avalanche terrain. Trails with a known hazard have been identified with an avalanche symbol. When travelling beyond marked trails, or past an avalanche danger sign on some trails, assume you are in avalanche country – your group should be prepared with the appropriate knowledge, skills and equipment.

Check the current avalanche forecast. Did you leave your trip plan with someone? For more information on backcountry travel and how to stay safe in the mountains, visit Parksmountainsafety.ca.

Recommended packing list – travel away from avalanche terrain

  • Trail guide and map 
  • Full water bottle or thermos 
  • High energy food 
  • Bear spray 
  • Sunscreen and sunglasses 
  • First aid kit 
  • Repair kit 
  • Lightweight emergency blanket, candle and lighter or waterproof matches 
  • Headlamp or flashlight with spare batteries 
  • Toque or winter hat and gloves 
  • Hiking poles and ice cleats 
  • Hand and toe warmers 
  • Extra clothing that would keep you warm should you stop in case of an emergency 
  • Carry a cell phone or satellite communication device appropriate for the area you will be visiting. Be aware that cell phone coverage is not reliable in the Park.
  • Wear a helmet when fat biking 

For information on packing for travel in avalanche terrain visit Parksmountainsafety.ca.