Spring 2021 Trail and Road Conditions

The Great Divide Trail Association continues to consider what is best for the health and safety of the trail community that we serve. Even while the COVID-19 pandemic continues, staying active in the outdoors is an excellent way to keep your body and mind healthy. We encourage everyone who spends time on the GDT this year to do so safely and continue to do your part to limit the spread of COVID-19.

At this time, the GDTA supports single-day hikes or horseback rides on the GDT and longer (weekend or multi-day), self-sufficient trips if they are in your local area, where trails and trailheads are open. 

To limit the potential transmission of the virus between you and others when on the GDT, please follow these guidelines:

  • Travel only with members of your household; practice 2-metre physical distancing from others at all times on the trail.
  • Avoid long-distance ‘thru’ hikes that involve resupplying and interaction with people in communities along the GDT.
  • Be completely self-supported on GDT outings; bring everything you need.
  • Stay local, explore sections of the trail near your home.
  • Always Leave No Trace.

TRAIL CLOSURES AND NOTICES: 

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, hikers with plans on the GDT this summer should pay close attention to provincial and local health restrictions as they evolve and be prepared to make changes to your plans in order to comply with these restrictions.  

  • Travel restrictions for non-essential travel in British Columbia are in place until May 25, 2021.
  • Parks Canada has aligned visitor services in British Columbia with these travel restrictions. Residents of British Columbia are being asked to cancel their camping reservations if in conflict with the new travel restrictions and Parks Canada will be cancelling all out-of-province reservations for national parks and national historic sites in British Columbia until May 25, 2021.
  • BC Parks is also complying with these travel restrictions, and asking all visitors who have made camping reservations up to May 25, 2021, for parks that are outside of their local Health Authority Region to cancel bookings. British Columbians are provided with priority access to camping reservations until July 8, when non-BC residents will also be permitted to make camping reservations. 
  • Alberta Parks campground reservations are open with reduced services and additional health guidelines and restrictions. 
  • Turbine Canyon campground in Peter Lougheed Provincial Park is closed for construction; opening date TBD.
  • TICKS: Tick season has started. Be extra careful when in areas with a lot of underbrush and check yourself and your clothing after your hike.
  • BEARS: With spring’s arrival, bears are leaving their dens in search of food. Be bear aware on the trails this spring, make noise and carry bear spray.
  • SNOW MELT: Snow levels in the southern Rockies are slightly below average for this time of year, while central and northern areas are average or slightly above average for this time of year. Spring avalanche conditions continue to exist so prepare accordingly. For up to date snow level data in BC, check out the Snow Survey Stations Interactive Map. In Alberta, check out the Alberta River Basins map (turn on the snow pillow layer).

ACCESS: 

  • A Kananaskis Conservation Pass will be required for all vehicles visiting Kananaskis Country and provincial sites in the Bow Valley Corridor starting June 1, 2021. The pass is not required for people arriving without a vehicle on foot, horseback or bicycle.
  • Highway 1 is closed for road construction 4 km east of Golden, until May 14, 2021. Detour via Highway 93S and Highway 95.
  • Highway 40 from junction Highway 742 to junction Highway 541 (Highwood House) is closed until June 14, 2021.
  • For more information, check out Alberta 511 and Drive BC.

National and Provincial Park Trail Conditions:

Banff National Park
Jasper National Park
Kootenay National Park
Waterton Lakes National Park
Yoho National Park

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

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