NAHANNI AND NÁÁTS’ĮHCH’OH NATIONAL PARK RESERVES RESUME 2020 VISITOR SERVICES

Issued: July 27, 2020

Deh Cho Region, N.W.T., July 27, 2020 – Nahanni National Park Reserve and World Heritage Site has resumed visitor services for the 2020 summer season. Nááts’įhch’oh National Park Reserve is also open to wilderness travel. We are excited to be welcoming visitors from across the Northwest Territories this summer season!

While Nááts’įhch’oh continues to be a wilderness travel destination with no in-park visitor services, a visit to Nahanni will not be the same as in the past as visitor services are somewhat different this year. The key to a good trip starts with good planning. Interested visitors should contact Parks Canada staff at either of the two parks or consult these websites:

  • Nahanni National Park Reserve: www.parkscanada.gc.ca/nahanni
  • Nááts’įhch’oh National Park Reserve: www.parkscanada.gc.ca/naatsihchoh

Visitors should be familiar with measures needed to stay safe in light of COVID-19, including the need to practice physical distancing, have a mask for use in confined spaces like a small aircraft and bring a clean trip kit with a mask, gloves and sanitizer for personal use.

For Nááts’įhch’oh National Park Reserve:
At this time, only residents of the Northwest Territories are able to visit the Park Reserve. Due to its remote location, access is only available via chartered flight. Since no Parks Canada employees are present for extended periods in the Park Reserve this summer, planning and self-reliance are essential. Services and facilities available to visitors, including search and rescue, will be limited. Anyone participating in recreational activities should be extra cautious to avoid injury and/or getting lost to help minimize the demands placed on search and rescue teams and on the health care system. For more information, contact the Park office at 867-588-4884, or for a list of visitor activities, please visit the park website at www.parkscanada.ca/naatsihchoh under “Things to Do”.

For Nahanni National Park Reserve:
At this time, residents of the Northwest Territories are able to visit the Park Reserve. Visitor services in Nahanni National Park Reserve are available with COVID-19 mitigations in place such as reduced group sizes and physical distancing measures as a part of scheduled interpretive activities.

Day-Use and flightseeing operations have begun:

  • Flightseeing trips to Nahanni from within the N.W.T. began in the first week of July.
  • Visitors should consult the posted list of licensed Nahanni operators and check directly with them to confirm schedules, pricing and special COVID-19 provisions that may be in place. Flights are available from Fort Simpson and directly from Yellowknife.
  • Day use destinations may include Náįlįcho (Virginia Falls), Glacier Lake, Gahnihthah Mie and other air charter destinations within the Park Reserve.
  • Parks Canada staff has begun offering interpretive hikes in Nahanni National Park Reserve. Inquire with your scheduled air charter company about programs you can take part in.
  • The Nahanni office in Fort Simpson will be open 7 days a week from 1:00-5:00 p.m. for visitor registrations, information and payments for backcountry fees.

Overnight operations:

  • Visitors may call or stop by the Nahanni National Park Reserve office to book campsites, confirm existing planned trips or to plan new trips to Nahanni this summer or fall.
  • Due to the remote nature of Nahanni National Park Reserve, overnight visitors should be self-sufficient and experienced with backcountry travel.
  • Campfire interpretive programs at Náįlįcho are being offered. Physical distancing guidelines and measures will be in place.
  • COVID-19 has had an impact on many of Nahanni’s river trip operators. Please refer to the park’s list of licensed operators and contract them directly to see if trips are still being offered into the park.

Parks Canada reminds all visitors that:

  • Your safety is your own responsibility. Please call or connect with Parks Canada staff prior to planning and visiting for overnight trips.
  • Due to unusually high rainfall in the Mackenzie Mountains this spring and summer, river levels and currents are still well above normal for the watershed of the Park Reserve. Rapids are large and new water obstacles such as logs and sweepers should be expected.
  • Cirque of the Unclimbables, as well as all paths and approaches to climbing routes are closed for the 2020 summer season.

Fort Simpson, N.W.T. is open and all normal visitor services such as hotels, gas, groceries and local territorial parks are operating. Visits and staycations in these communities are encouraged. For more information, visit: www.fort-simpson.com

Our community partners in Nahanni Butte, N.W.T. are requesting that no unnecessary visits to the community take place. Please respect these wishes when planning your trips.

Information:

Vanessa Murtsell
Visitor Experience Manager
Nahanni National Park Reserve
Vanessa.Murtsell@canada.ca
867-695-6483

Nadine Gauvin
Nááts’įhch’oh Park Superintendent
Nááts’įhch’oh National Park Reserve
Nadine.Gauvin@canada.ca
867-374-0524

Kevin Gedling
Communications Officer
Southwest Northwest Territories Field Unit
Kevin.Gedling@canada.ca
780-883-0486