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Banff's Latest News

Posted on: September 6, 2017

Wildfire Update from Parks Canada - Sept. 6, 3:12 p.m.

Parks Canada continues to actively manage the Verdant Creek wildfire that is burning in Kootenay National Park and Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park using ground crews and helicopter bucketing. The fire does not directly threaten the Bow or Columbia valleys. A significant change in weather along with substantial rainfall is needed for the fire to be fully extinguished.

A fire ban remains in effect in Banff, Yoho and Kootenay national parks due to the elevated fire danger and to prevent the possibility of human-caused fires.

What’s new:
The size of the Verdant Creek wildfire is currently estimated at 17,644 hectares with the majority of the recent growth in the remote southeastern area of the fire. Parks Canada continues to work with the BC Wildfire Service in managing this fire.

If current conditions continue, the following closures are expected to be lifted on Friday, September 8, 2017:

In Banff National Park
  • Re21 backcountry campground
In Kootenay National Park
  • The south western portion of the Vermilion valley 
Other closures associated with the Verdant Creek wildfire remain in effect. Check our website regularly for the most current list of closures: www.parkscanada.gc.ca/verdant-fire.

The Crooks Meadows and West Bow Lake fires that started on August 31 have been extinguished and the West Bow Lake area is now open. A small fire that started on September 3rd in the Amiskwi drainage in Yoho National Park has also been extinguished.

What is closed:
The following fire-related closures are in place:

In Banff National Park:
  • The trails south from Summit of Allenby Pass, including Og Pass Trail, Hikers Bypass Trail, Horse Trail and Wonder Pass Trail 
  • Fatigue Creek Trail, Fatigue Pass, Citadel Pass Trail and backcountry campground Su8 
  • Redearth Pass Trail past Egypt Lake Warden Cabin, including trail to Talc Lake 
  • Ball Pass Trail from west of Re21 to the park boundary
In Kootenay National Park:
  • Area northwest of Honeymoon Pass Trail including the Hawk Creek Trail 
  • Verdant Creek and Simpson River area 
FOR CURRENT INFORMATION:
For current area closures and air quality information, refer to our website: www.parkscanada.gc.ca/verdant-fire and our Facebook and Twitter channels.

Highway 93 through Kootenay National Park may be affected by wildfire, smoke and fire suppression activities. Drivers should check http://www.DriveBC.ca and http://www.alberta511.ca for the most up-to-date information. When Highway 93 South through Kootenay National Park is open, it is a safe route to the Columbia Valley. Should it be impacted by smoke or fire behaviour, alternate routes, such as Highways 1 and 95 through Golden, BC, add only approximately one additional hour of driving time.

Emergencies only: Report wildfires, illegal campfires, or suspicious smoke to Banff Dispatch at 403-762-4506.

NOTE: Further updates will be provided only when there are significant changes such as notable fire growth, changes to area closures and anticipated increase in fire activity.
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