A wildfire was detected in the Verdant Creek area of Kootenay National Park on July 15, 2017 and has grown since it was first detected and spread to Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park. Kootenay National Park, Banff National Park and Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park are very close to each other in that area.
While there are closures that need to happen to protect the safety of visitors, currently most of Banff National Park including the Town of Banff, the hamlet of Lake Louise and highways remain open and ready to welcome visitors.
Parks Canada has specific up to date information and maps about the fire and the closures in the area on their important bulletins page.
Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park information is found on their important notice page.
We at Chinook Rafting are thankful to the Fire crews that are out there battling the wildfires tirelessly across BC and Alberta right now. Other than smoke in the air, Chinook Rafting is still operating as normal and rafting down our amazing rivers!
Published 17th July 2017
Update 18th July 2017 – Our team out at the riverbase and on the river are reporting that it is less hazy than yesterday. Looks like the smoke is clearing up.
Update 19th July 2017 – It is only backcountry closures that are in effect in Banff National Park, all front-country facilities remain open. Detailed information from Parks Canada. ‘The area closure includes areas in both Kootenay and Banff National Parks. In Kootenay, the area near Verdant Creek and south to the Simpson River is closed. In Banff, the Egypt Lake area, Healy Pass, Citadel Pass and Sunshine Meadows areas are closed. Hiking in the Sunshine Village area is closed, but the gondola and Upper Village facilities remain open’. Sunshine Village webcam
Update 20th July 2017 – Our skies are clearer as we have been lucky with the wind direction, but the wildfire is still going. The current perimeter of the fire is approximately 2,500-3,000 hectares. Further information can be found at Rocky Mountain Outlook.
Update 21st July 2017 – What a difference a few days make, picture taken on the 20th July 2017.
Update 22nd July 2017 – We continue to have clear skies.
Update 23rd July 2017 – a great resource from Parks Canada about the Verdant Creek Wildfire.
Update 24th July 2017 – our skies have cleared, and we are still thankful to those on the ground keeping us safe!
Update 31st July 2017 – more hazy skies, but we are still out rafting on the rivers we love! Verdant Creek Wildfire.
Update 3rd August 2017 – the fire remains on the west side of the Continental Divide. Verdant Creek Wildfire.