Openings and services differ across the country. Please check the Parks Canada national information portal dedicated to COVID-19 for regular updates.

Important information about your visit to Waterton Lakes National Park

Waterton Lakes National Park is offering visitor access and basic services.

Information on what is open, what services, activities and facilities are available, what visitors can expect, and how to prepare for your visit is listed in the sections below.

Information will be updated regularly.

Visiting Waterton Lakes National Park will be different than it has been in the past. Your cooperation is required to ensure a safe experience for yourself and others.

For the health and safety of all visitors, Parks Canada may monitor traffic at peak periods. When traffic volumes affect the ability of the park to operate safely, Parks Canada may temporarily divert traffic.

What’s open (updated October 28, 2020)
Parks Canada information
  • Park gate - entrance fees are in effect, staffed hours of service may vary
  • Information kiosk - open Monday to Friday, 8 am to 4 pm; Saturday and Sunday, 9 am to 5 pm, for enquiries by telephone / email and limited in-person services. Located on Fountain Avenue in Waterton townsite
Public washroom facilities
  • In Waterton townsite, the Fire Hall and Cameron Falls washrooms are open throughout the winter

Map: Map of Waterton townsite

  • Entrance Road
  • Red Rock Parkway is closed to vehicles for the season. The road remains available for hiking, biking and winter recreation
  • Akamina Parkway is open to Little Prairie Day Use Area. Access beyond Little Prairie and to Cameron Lake is pedestrian only for the winter
  • Chief Mountain Highway is open as far as Belly River Bridge. Chief Mountain Border crossing is closed until further notice
  • Bison Paddock Overlook to Bellevue / Horseshoe trailhead
Day use/picnic areas
  • Cameron Falls, heated washrooms available
  • Cameron Bay
  • Community Kitchen
  • Lakeshore
  • Emerald Bay
  • Driftwood Beach
  • Hay Barn
  • Coppermine Creek (parking available, day use facilities closed)
  • Lost Horse Creek
  • Red Rock Canyon, primitive washrooms available
  • Linnet Lake
  • Maskinonge
  • Pass Creek, primitive washrooms available
  • Little Prairie (parking available, day use facilities closed)
  • Cameron Lake, primitive washrooms available
Hiking and trails
  • Most trails in the park are open
  • For a list of trails and trail descriptions, visit our Hiking section
  • For current trail conditions, visit our Trail Conditions page
  • For closures unrelated to the COVID-19 pandemic, visit our Important Bulletins page

Map: Map of hiking trails

Water activities
  • Upper, Middle and Lower Waterton Lakes are accessible for non-motorized water recreation
  • Parks Canada has authorized motorized and trailered watercraft to operate on Upper and Middle Waterton Lake, once the watercraft have completed a 90-day quarantine seal program.
  • National park fishing permits can be obtained by phoning or going to the Visitor Centre. Permits must be picked up in person
  • As of July 13, 2020, Waterton Lakes National Park began a gradual resumption of its volunteer program.
Commercial activities
What’s closed (updated October 28, 2020)
Day use/picnic areas
  • McNeely's
  • Little Prairie (parking available, day use facilities closed)
  • Coppermine Creek (parking available, day use facilities closed)
  • Knight's Lake
Hiking and trails
  • The Lakeshore and Boundary Creek trails are closed at the United States border
  • The bridge at Lower Bertha Falls is not in service
Interpretive programs and special events
  • In-person interpretation, group activities and events are suspended until further notice
Suspended visitor services
  • Park Administration building on Mount View Road
  • Parks Canada Operations Compound on the Entrance Road, including:
    • The Operations Building
    • The Warden’s Office
Camping during COVID-19

Waterton Lakes National Park is offering limited camping services.

  • Sites are available for Townsite Campground by self-registration, loops B and H only (weather dependent)
  • Reservations for backcountry (wilderness) camping are available by calling the visitor centre at 403-859-5133
  • Belly River Campground will remain closed until further notice
  • Crandell Mountain Campground remains closed due to damage sustained in the Kenow Wildfire and will remain so for 2020

Visit our camping page for more information on camping services available in Waterton Lakes National Park during COVID-19.

Frequently asked questions

What is Parks Canada doing to help limit the spread of COVID-19?

Health and safety is a shared responsibility. Parks Canada will put appropriate measures in place to help Canadians stay safe, and visitors are expected to follow the recommendations of public health officials.

Parks Canada will be following the advice of public health authorities and implementing measures for cleaning, hygiene, and physical distancing at all places open for visitation. In Waterton Lakes National Park, this includes cleaning washrooms at least twice each day.

What should I bring to protect myself, stay safe and help limit the spread of COVID-19 during my visit?

Bring your own hand sanitizer. A reusable mask is recommended for areas where physical distance cannot be maintained. Outdoor surfaces like picnic tables and hand railings are not being regularly cleaned. Practice good hygiene like regular hand-washing.

Items like disposable gloves and disinfectant wipes can be helpful, but please ensure these are being disposed of properly. More than ever, Parks Canada requires your help to keep trails and facilities free of garbage.

We strongly encourage all visitors to wear a non-medical mask or face covering when visiting indoor public spaces at Waterton Lakes National Park. An indoor public space is any space with walls and a roof that can be accessed by the members of the public, e.g. public washrooms.

Visitors should follow the advice of public health experts and to practice physical distancing and hygiene measures, limit public gatherings and respect travel restrictions and closures.

Will Parks Canada limit the number of visitors/vehicles in Waterton Lakes National Park this year?

Parks Canada’s goal is to provide the safest possible experience for visitors, wildlife and staff. When traffic volumes affect the ability of the park to operate safely, Parks Canada will temporarily divert traffic.

Visitors can follow us on social media or visit our website for live park information on busy weekends. Parks Canada encourages everyone to plan ahead and check these resources prior to their arrival to have the best possible experience.

What if a parking lot is full? What options do I have?

Visitors have a responsibility to maintain physical distance. If a parking lot is full, it is best to go elsewhere. There are over 500 parking stalls in the Waterton village, which is very walkable. Visitors can park anywhere in town and be a short walk away from attractions and services.

Do not overcrowd parking lots, park illegally along roadway shoulders or off-road.

Will Parks Canada limit access to busy trails in Waterton Lakes National Park?

Maintaining physical distance on trails is your responsibility. Some trails in the park, specifically Bertha Falls/Lake and Townsite loop can be crowded on busy days. Consider hiking earlier or later in the day to avoid crowds.

Stay informed