Wildfire Update from Parks Canada: July 19, 2017 4:45 p.m.
The Parks Canada incident management team is actively managing a wildfire in Kootenay National Park and Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park. The fire remains on the west side of the Continental Divide, approximately 24 km from the Town of Banff and approximately 2.5 km from Sunshine Village. It is not currently threatening any local communities.
The fire has spread along the west slopes of the continental divide in Mt Assiniboine Provincial Park across the Continental Divide from the headwaters of Brewster Creek drainage. As a precautionary measure, the Banff backcountry area closure will now include the Fatigue Creek and Brewster Creek valley.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- The safety of the public, our crews, park infrastructure and neighbouring lands is always Parks Canada’s first priority.
- The fire has been growing under very dry and windy conditions, and has spread to the southeast further into Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park. The fire is presently estimated to be between 2500 to 3000 ha in size. Parks Canada is working closely with BC Parks and the BC Wildfire Service to manage the fire. There are presently 60 people and five helicopters deployed to manage this fire. For more information about Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park, visit www.env.gov.bc.ca/bcparks/explore/parkpgs/mt_assiniboine
- The Verdant Creek wildfire is currently not a threat to local communities. The incident management team continues to assess the situation relative to the Town of Banff, Canmore and the hamlet of Harvie Heights. If this situation changes, we will update the public immediately.
- The existing Egypt Lake area closure and the additional area closure are in place as a precautionary measure to ensure the safety of visitors and fire operations.
- Three other fires in the Emerald Lake and Amiskwi areas in Yoho National Park, and Boom Lake in Banff National Park have been extinguished.
Areas in both Kootenay and Banff national parks are affected by closures:
- In Kootenay, the area near Verdant Creek and Simpson River remain closed.
- In Banff, the Egypt Lake area remains closed. Hiking in the Sunshine Village area is closed, but the gondola and Upper Village remain open. The addition backcountry closure area for the Brewster Creek drainage includes Brewster Creek Trail to the junction with Og Pass trail, BW10, Fatigue Creek Trail, Allenby Pass Trail, and Og Pass Trail.
Backcountry camping permits in this area are cancelled until further notice. Individuals with backcountry reservations in the area closure should contact 403-762-1556 or visit a Parks Canada Visitor Centre.
A fire ban has been issued for all mountain national parks due to the elevated fire danger and to prevent the possibility of human-caused fires.
WHAT’S OPEN IN THE AREA:
Except for the closure area, all facilities in Banff and Kootenay national Parks remain open, and there are many backcountry destinations for visitors to explore. All highways in Banff and Kootenay national parks remain open.
In the proximity of the closure area, the following facilities remain open: the Gondola and Upper Village facilities of Sunshine Village, Shadow Lake Lodge and other tourism operations in the area, Hawk Creek and Redearth Trails to Ball Pass. The Assiniboine Pass Trail and Wonder Pass Trail will remain open. The Bryant Creek area up to and including BR 17 remains open
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
For up to date information, please refer to our website: www.parkscanada.gc.ca/banff
and our Facebook and Twitter channels.
Emergencies only: Report wildfires, illegal campfires, or suspicious smoke to Banff Dispatch at 403-762-4506