Some of these tips are for every visitor to Kananaskis Country. Others apply more to the backcountry. If you're going into the backcountry, please review our information on backcountry safety and Backcountry Etiquette.
- Use trails where they exist. Stay on the trail even if it's wet or muddy. Otherwise, multiple trails result ("braiding") which further damages the landscape.
- Don't short-cut switchbacks. It encourages others to follow and causes erosion.
- Walk on durable surfaces such as trails, rock, gravel and dry grasses. Avoid walking on fragile vegetation, especially along stream banks.
- Camp in designated campsites.
- Be considerate of other visitors. Share the trail. Step to the downhill side of the trail when encountering horses.
Give Wildlife Their Space
- Stay on trails whenever possible.
- Keep your pet on a leash. This protects your pet as well as wildlife.
- Respect trail closures and restrictions. Reasons for restrictions include bear activity, sheep calving, wolf denning and wildlife corridors.
- Learn to recognize prime bear feeding habitat and food sources. Consider choosing an alternate trail until the ripened buffaloberries are finished.
- Keep your distance from wildlife. Never follow or approach wildlife. Never feed wildlife.
- Review our info on wildlife safety.
Use Fire Carefully ... Or Not at All
- Campfires are permitted in certain areas. However, we recommend you use a portable gas stove. It's easier on the environment - and cleaner to cook over!
- In the backcountry in Provincial Parks, campfires are only permitted in designated sites. Use only the provided firepits.
- In Wildland Parks, campfires are permitted. Use provided firepits or established firerings when available.
- Keep your fire small. If using deadfall in a Wildland Park, use only sticks that can be broken by hand. Burn all your wood to ash. Before leaving camp, ensure your fire is out and cold to the touch.
Put Waste in its Place
- Use outhouses when available. Where there are no outhouses, bury waste in a cathole. Dig 15-20 centimetres (6-8 inches) deep and at least 50 metres from any water source. Please carry out your toilet paper.
- Bathe and wash dishes well away from any water source. Never wash dishes in a stream or lake.
- Dispose of soapy ("grey") water in outhouses where provided. Otherwise, pour wash water into a sumphole away from camp and water sources. Then fill the hole with dirt.
- When disposing of fish guts (offal), first pierce the air bladder. Then throw the fish guts far out into the lake.
If You Pack it In, Pack it Out ... And Then Some
- Pack out all your trash, leftover food and hygiene products. Do not burn your garbage.
- If you see litter previously left by others, please pick it up and carry it out.