September 28, 2023
Cooler temperatures, shorter days and morning frost are signs that summer in the mountains is winding down. Cool, wet weather this week will include some snowfall at higher elevations so expect wet and muddy sections following periods of rain or snow.
TRAIL CLOSURES AND NOTICES:
- ELK RUTTING SEASON: It is elk rutting season until mid-October. Warning signs that read “ATTENTION – Elk Mating” have been posted at areas where elk herds often gather. Be aware that bull elk become extremely aggressive during rutting season so keep at least 30 metres away from all elk and never get between a male and female elk.
- BEARS: It’s pre-hibernation feeding season for black and grizzly bears which increases the chances of running into a bear on the trail. It is easy to surprise a bear that is focussed on feeding so make noise while hiking in bear territory. Be alert, make noise, carry bear spray and if you see a bear, back away slowly and leave the area.
- CLOSURE – Waterton Lakes National Park: Sage Pass Trail, Twin Lakes campground, and Twin Lakes Trail from the Snowshoe/Twin Lakes Trail junction to the Kishinena-Bauerman col is closed due to a carcass in the area. Hikers can detour around the closure using the Mount Rowe-Sage Pass alternate and the South Kootenay Pass Trail.
- CLOSURE – Collie Creek Alternate Route: The Blaeberry bridge near Cairnes Creek Rec Site was removed on August 30, cutting off access to the Collie Creek Trail on the east side of the Blaeberry River. The main route of the GDT via Ensign Creek Road to Cairnes Creek is still open and accessible.
- CLOSURE – Mount Robson Provincial Park: The Berg Lake Trail will remain closed for repairs during the 2023 season, except for the first 7 kilometres from the parking lot to Kinney Lake. Mount Robson Visitor Centre has temporarily suspended its resupply package service. The Moose River Trail is open, giving GDT Hikers 4 options to use as the GDT northern terminus other than the Berg Lake Trail:
2. Moose River
- CLOSURE – Egypt Lake and Bryant Creek shelters are closed until further notice due to construction.
- WILDFIRES: Conditions have improved but smoke from wildfires continues to impact some sections of the GDT. Check out the current smoke forecast for more information. Fire hazard ratings are currently low to moderate in the Rockies, and there are no fire bans. If you must have a campfire in the backcountry, ensure you follow the rules.
- A Kananaskis Conservation Pass will be required for all vehicles visiting Kananaskis Country and provincial sites in the Bow Valley Corridor. The pass is not required for people arriving without a vehicle on foot, horseback or bicycle.
- Highway 1 road construction 4 km east of Golden – highway will be closed 24/7 until October 6, except weekends. If necessary, detour via Highway 93S and Highway 95.
- BC Parks lists Walker Creek FSR as closed at km 37 due to unsafe road conditions, but the road remains accessible beyond that point for those with high clearance 4WD vehicles willing to drive the very rough and overgrown road all the way to from the Bastille Creek trailhead.
- For more information, check out Alberta 511 and Drive BC.
National and Provincial Park Trail Conditions:
Akamina‐Kishinena Provincial Park
Castle Wildland Provincial Park
Castle Provincial Park
Elk Lakes Provincial Park
Height of the Rockies Provincial Park
Kakwa Provincial Park
Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park
Mount Robson Provincial Park
Peter Lougheed Provincial Park