COVID-19 and your visit to Wood Buffalo National Park
Starting June 1, some Parks Canada places will begin to offer limited access and services while maintaining physical distancing measures. Information will be updated regularly.
Only places and activities where health and safety risks can be managed will be available for visitation. We are asking visitors to be cautious and conservative in their use of these places, to observe travel restrictions, respect closures, follow the guidance of public health experts, and to make every effort to keep one another safe.
Opening details will differ across the country. Please check the Parks Canada national information portal dedicated to COVID-19 for regular updates.
Parks Canada and COVID-19 (updated May 27, 2020)
The health and safety of Canadians, visitors and Parks Canada team members is our top priority.
Being outdoors and in nature brings a number of health and wellness benefits., It is important that people have access to natural spaces where they can go to get exercise and fresh air in settings that facilitate physical distancing.
On June 1, 2020, Parks Canada will begin a safe, gradual opening of some outdoor locations in national parks, national historic sites and national marine conservation areas.
- Starting June 1, visitors will be permitted to access some trails, day use areas, and green spaces at some locations. Until then, all suspensions of visitor services and closures of facilities announced in March remain in place.
- For their own safety, visitors should not try to access locations that are closed.
- All camping facilities remain closed until at least June 21, 2020, while Parks Canada assesses whether and how these services might resume. Group activities and public events will be prohibited until further notice. All existing reservations set to take place prior to June 21, 2020, will be automatically cancelled and refunded in full.
- Highways and roadways which pass through Parks Canada places will remain open.
Important information about your visit to Wood Buffalo National Park
Fort Smith NT, May 2020 – Starting June 1 2020, limited visitor services will be restored in Wood Buffalo National Park. Visitors will be able to access the following services and facilities;
- The entirety of Highway 5 and the road through to Peace Point, Alberta
- All official hiking trails for day-use only
- All boat launches and shorelines for day-use activities
- Day use area areas including some washrooms, picnic tables and trailhead parking areas
- All shelter buildings in day-use areas
- Playground facilities at Pine Lake and Angus Day Use Area
- Pine Lake Campground, Rental Cabins and Kettle Point group camp
- All personal interpretive programs
- Fort Smith and Fort Chipewyan visitor centres
- All overnight recreational backcountry use
What's open (updated May 29, 2020)
What's closed (updated May 29, 2020)
The following facilities remain closed until further notice:
Your safety when visiting
The NWT Chief Public Health Officer has prohibited ALL travel into the NWT by non-residents to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Though the majority of the park is situated in Alberta, summer road access is through the NWT only. Please consult the GNWT’s COVID-19 information pages for more details. NWT Residents should consult GNWT prior to leaving the NWT to visit the park. A mandatory self-isolation period may be required upon return to the NWT.
The health and safety of visitors and employees is of utmost importance to the Government of Canada. Parks Canada is following the advice of public health experts and continues to make every effort to limit the spread of COVID-19. Visitors should follow the advice of public health experts, including necessary hygiene practices and physical distancing of two metres from others.
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.
Bear sightings are not uncommon. For your safety, please secure all attractants, practice leave no trace values and pack in/pack out your garbage. Wildlife may be become habituated if they are able to access human food.
Detailed information on Parks Canada places and the measures the Agency is taking to limit the spread of COVID-19 can be found on the Parks Canada website: parkscanada.gc.ca/woodbuffalo. Please check regularly for updates.
Parks Canada is working with our provincial and territorial counterparts, local municipalities and communities to keep visitors and residents informed and safe.
For the most up to date information, visit: