COVID-19 Updates: Taking steps to return to normal.
Visitors be aware, in the mountains the water is cold all year. If you fall into the cold water it will affect you immediately.
Albertans with permanent disabilities are able to book up to 120 days in advance.
Starting September 1st, seniors can begin making reservations for bookings up to 60 days in advance
William Watson Lodge provides year-round, barrier-free wilderness lodging. Situated in Peter Lougheed Provincial Park on Lower Kananaskis Lake, William Watson Lodge provides needs-based accommodation and accessible experiences to Albertans.
At this time, we are temporarily limiting eligibility for the first four months of reservations to our highest priority guests: Albertans with permanent disabilities. We thank you for your understanding and flexibility as we reopen and begin to welcome persons of all ages and abilities back to William Watson Lodge. Construction closures still apply to Cabins E-H, and will be updated later.
Alberta’s government invested more than $6 million to enhance visitor experiences and bring the facility up to today’s accessibility standards. William Watson Lodge’s operations are subsidized by revenues from the Kananaskis Conservation Pass, which supports visitor experiences, conservation, recreation, public safety and services across Kananaskis Country and the Bow Valley Corridor.
At this time, our three bedroom cabins, comfort camping cabin and campground are able to be reserved. Reservations can be made online using our new system or by calling the Alberta Parks Contact Centre at 1-877-537-2757. For more complex reservations, we recommend calling the Main Lodge at 403-591-7227.
A $12 reservation fee will be applied to all reservations; however, rates for campsites and cabins have remained unchanged. The fee is consistent with reservations across the Alberta Parks system.
A Kananaskis Conservation Pass is required for all vehicles parking at William Watson Lodge. Beginning June 6, 2022, passes will be available for purchase at the Main Lodge. For more information about purchasing a pass and exemptions, visit alberta.ca/kananaskis-conservation-pass.aspx.
Question: How has the reservation system changed? How will it affect me?
Guests now have more options for booking, including an online reservation system. With record-breaking numbers of visitors exploring our provincial parks and recreation areas, it is important to ensure we are providing accessible experiences to meet the needs of Albertans.
In the past, reservations were only accepted by telephone, starting on the first working Monday of the month. An application for eligibility was required prior to making a reservation, and the waitlist was often filled to capacity. The new reservation system will provide more ways to make your reservation and will support online payment options.
Reservations can be made online using our new system or by calling the Alberta Parks Contact Centre at 1-877-537-2757. For more complex reservations, we recommend calling the Main Lodge at 403-591-7227. Construction closures still apply to Cabins E-H, and will be updated later this summer.
Question: What is the cost to stay in a cabin or campsite?
William Watson Lodge prides itself on offering affordable, barrier-free experiences and lodging. At this time, our three bedroom cabins, comfort camping cabin and campground are able to be reserved. Our Main Lodge and day use amenities will also be available.
Three bedroom cabins: $40.00 per night (plus $12.00 reservation fee for all bookings)
Campsites: $16.00 per night (plus $12.00 reservation fee for all bookings)
Please note that all bookings are subject to a $12 reservation fee. The reservation fee is consistent across the Alberta Parks system.
Question: Do I need a Kananaskis Conservation Pass for my stay at William Watson Lodge? Am I eligible for a low income Albertan exemption?
Yes. All vehicles parked at provincial park and public land sites in Kananaskis Country and the Bow Valley need a Kananaskis Conservation Pass. Passes can be purchased in advance of your stay at www.alberta.ca/yourpass.
Albertans on Assured Income for Severely Handicapped (AISH) and Alberta Income Support (AIS) may be eligible for an exemption Visit https://www.alberta.ca/kananaskis-conservation-pass.aspx for more details.
Question: How do I reserve William Watson Lodge for my group?
Due to high demand on our cabins this summer, overnight group reservations will be delayed until the fall. At this time, we are happy to host groups in our Main Lodge for day reservations only. If you are a coordinator for a group that is looking for a day reservation, please call the Main Lodge at 403-591-7227 or email at email@example.com to connect with a member of our Visitor Experience Team.
Groups supporting Albertans with disabilities and terminal illnesses are able to confirm reservations up to 120 days in advance. Groups supporting seniors and out-of-province persons with disabilities are able to confirm reservations up to 60 days in advance.
Question: Where is William Watson Lodge?
William Watson Lodge is situated in Peter Lougheed Provincial Park on Lower Kananaskis Lake, approximately one hour from Canmore, Alberta and approximately 1.5 hours or more from Cochrane or Calgary, Alberta. It is near the Peter Lougheed Discovery Centre and the Elkwood Campground and Amphitheatre. This is a remote location with limited to no cell service or wireless internet access.
Question: What can I do at William Watson Lodge?
William Watson Lodge offers barrier-free experiences for visitors to enjoy. Your overnight accommodations at William Watson Lodge include access to the main lodge, including the library where you can enjoy a book by the fireplace or play a few board games.
For those who want to explore, there is an accessible/paved trail network to our fire pit and playground, and access to Lower Kananaskis Lake, the Elkwood Amphitheatre, the Peter Lougheed Discovery Centre and more.
Our staff are happy to provide recommendations on recreation, tourism and programming opportunities. Rocky Mountain Adaptive is available to support adaptive outdoor recreation and we have some equipment available to borrow courtesy of the William Watson Lodge Society.
Question: How do I learn more about becoming a Campground Host?
To be eligible to volunteer as a Campground Host, you will have previously stayed at the Lodge, or have experience as a Campground Host at William Watson Lodge. Preference is given to seniors and persons with disabilities for volunteer host placements. William Watson Lodge is proud to support Campground Hosts, however at this time we have obtained all volunteers required for the season. For more information please call the Main Lodge at 403-591-7227 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to connect with a member of our Visitor Experience Team.