Avalanche alert issued for section of Waterton Lakes National Park

Avalanche alert issued for section of Waterton Lakes National Park

An avalanche alert has been issued for a section of Waterton Lakes National Park, with people advised to reconsider travelling to that area this weekend. 

The alert covers areas in the southwest of Waterton, including campsites and trails leading up to Cameron Creek, Parks Canada said on its website. Parks Canada said entry to the affected area is not recommended and avalanches are likely. 

a map of waterton lakes national park with a yellow area marking out the avalanche zone
Parks Canada said entry to the park is not recommended and avalanches are likely. (Parks Canada)

Heavy snowfall at the park combined with warmer temperatures have created conditions ripe for strong avalanches. 

“We’ve seen an increase in the risk of large avalanches in this area since the 2017 Kenow wildfire,” said Dallas Meidinger, external relations manager for Waterton Lakes National Park. 

He added that avalanches have the potential to impact infrastructure and foot traffic. 

“With this in mind, Parks Canada’s visitor safety team made a decision to update the townsite’s avalanche area rating to entry — not recommended,” Meidinger said. That entry —  not recommended status — is only for the portion of the Waterton townsite and Bertha trail known as the Townsite Avalanche Area. 

Signs have been put up so people are aware as they head toward the town, and drivers are advised that conditions on the roads around Waterton could also be rough over the next couple of days.

Meidinger said if people still choose to travel to the park they should make informed decisions by checking avalanche bulletins, the Parks Canada website and Alberta 511