The following information is from Parks Canada:
Parks Canada will remove all fish from Johnson Lake in an attempt to eradicate whirling disease. This requires the lake to be partially drained and the fish to be removed with gill nets. This is the first attempt to eradicate whirling disease in Canada, and the third year of this project.
To facilitate this work, Parks Canada will close Johnson Lake and its tributaries, and Johnson Lake Road, from October 1, 2019 to May 14, 2020. This area closure is required to ensure public safety, as the dewatering may cause unpredictable fluctuations in water levels and unsafe ice conditions throughout the winter.
What you need to know:
- Whirling disease is not harmful to humans, but can significantly affect fish populations. It can be transmitted to other water bodies through dirty and muddy gear and equipment used for recreation.
- There are many great alternative skating locations in Banff National Park. Remember to check ice thickness before each outing. https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/ab/banff/activ/patinage-skating
- Eradicating whirling disease from Johnson Lake will prevent its spread to several core areas for species at risk, such as westslope cutthroat trout.
Parks Canada Important Bulletins