Don’t forget a COVID-kit! Select campgrounds reopen in national parks
CALGARY -- People with existing reservations will be allowed to set up camp at a number of campgrounds in national parks — including sites near Banff and Lake Louise — beginning Monday.
Camping will look slightly different with bathrooms open but cooking shelters and shower staying closed to accommodate social distancing.
Parks Canada also encourages campers to pack a COVID-19 hygiene safety kit that includes hand sanitizer and wipes.
Parks Canada will gradually begin accepting new bookings soon, including reservations in Banff National Park starting on June 26th.
New bookings will be for Canadians only. All international bookings —including American reservations — have been refunded until August 7.
Daniella Rubeling, the manager of visitor experience in Banff National Park, says whether you’re coming from Alberta or across Canada, everyone needs to follow the restrictions in place for each province or territory.
"Visitors must complete provincial requirements of self-isolation before arriving to camp so we're reminding visitors no matter where you're coming from those are really important things to keep in mind," said Rubeling. "You cannot complete self-isolation periods in our campgrounds."
All national parks and historic sites have been closed since March 17th due to the pandemic and to stop the spread of COVID-19.
Rubeling says there has been an increase in people coming to Banff and Lake Louise since hiking trails and some services reopened on June 1.
"It’s definitely not what we’ve had historically these times of years," explained Rubeling, "but definitely we’re seeing an increase in visitations,
"We anticipate now that school is over we’ll see an increase of visitors at our sites."
Visitors are encouraged to check Parks Canada’s reservation website regularly in the coming weeks for any updates on additional sites reopening.