There’s plenty to do and see in the mountain national parks over the May long weekend: visitors are encouraged to drive vigilantly

Wildlife are out and about in Banff, Kootenay and Yoho National Parks

Parks Canada gives out advice to people travelling throughout local parks on the long weekend.

  • May. 17, 2013 3:00 p.m.

Omar McDadi

Parks Canada | Parcs Canada


With the May long weekend on the horizon and plenty of things to see and do in Banff, Kootenay and Yoho national parks, Parks Canada is reminding drivers to please exercise caution and drive with vigilance on mountain park roads at a time of year when wildlife face considerable risks searching for food and mates in close proximity to roads.

Last year 12 bears were killed by vehicles on highways in Banff, Kootenay and Yoho national parks, with most collisions occurring at unfenced sections of road.

“It’s a great time of year to experience the mountain parks with campgrounds open and lots of hiking possibilities, though at the same time we ask that visitors please drive with caution and brush up on the their bear awareness skills and knowledge,” said Brianna Burley, a Parks Canada Human-Wildlife Conflict Specialist based in Lake Louise.  “Our dedicated staff work hard to minimize collisions with wildlife, but we cannot act alone – we really need the public’s help.”

Parks Canada hopes that increased driver vigilance will make roads safer for wildlife and people. “We ask that visitors please slow down, observe speed limits and be extra vigilant on the roads at dawn and dusk when animals are most active,” added Burley. “Not only can following the speed

limit prolong an animal’s life by many years, it can also contribute to human safety and has the potential to save lives.”

Parks Canada is also reminding visitors that feeding or harassing wildlife is against the law. Feeding wildlife can lead to habituation, causing animals to lose their wariness of humans and increasing the risk of accidents. In 2012, Parks Canada responded to several reports of visitors feeding wildlife in the mountain parks, including an incident in Kootenay National Park where a wolf was approached and fed rice cakes.

Parks Canada employs a number of on-the-ground management actions to help reduce roadside wildlife collisions and habituation, including the use of Bear Guardians and signage to alert visitors to the presence of wildlife on roads. Bear Guardians interact with visitors on park roads to prevent,

monitor and manage bear jams. Bear Guardians work closely with resource conservation personnel, who are trained to work directly with bears to minimize the probability of bear/human conflicts and keep bears away from roads, garbage and other risks.

Parks Canada strongly encourages the public to report wildlife sightings and suspicious behaviour, such as wildlife feeding or hazardous driving by calling 1-888-WARDENS.


Just Posted

Early morning fire destroys building on 14th Street S.

Firefighters worked to extinguish the blaze for more than six hours

Editorial: Women’s fundamental rights

Women have fought for years, decades, and centuries to get where we… Continue reading

Golden residents invited to discuss Green New Deal

Golden is just one of 150 towns that are hosting a Green… Continue reading

EarlyAct Club delivery acts of kindness to seniors in Golden

Golden’s EarlyAct Club is a group of young elementary-school aged children who… Continue reading

VIDEO: Protesters in Penticton gather to rally against sleeping-on-sidewalk bylaw

The proposed bylaw would outlaw sitting or lying on the city’s downtown sidewalks

Raptors beat Bucks 100-94 to advance to franchise’s first-ever NBA Finals

Leonard has 27 points, 17 boards to lead Toronto past Milwaukee

Third person charged in death of B.C. teen Bhavkiran Dhesi

Inderdeep Kaur Deo facing charge of accessory after the fact to murder

Kamloops girl, 9, recovering from carbon monoxide poisoning now out of ICU

Her mother who was sleeping in the same tent with her did not survive

‘I think he’s still alive’: B.C. mom pleads for help finding son last seen a month ago

Family offering $5,000 reward for information leading to the safe return of Tim Delahaye

New poll suggests one-third don’t want politicians to wear religious symbols

Local politicians shouldn’t be allowed to wear hijabs, crucifixes or turbans on the job, survey suggests

Raptors fans far from home adjust plans to watch pivotal playoff game

Raptors currently lead the playoff series 3-2, and a win Saturday would vault them into NBA finals

Five takeaways from the Court of Appeal ruling on B.C.’s pipeline law

It’s unclear how many tools are left in B.C.’s toolbox to fight the project

Kootenay man arrested and charged in 2015 murder

Nathaniel Jessup 32 of Creston has been charged with the second-degree murder of Katherine McAdam and offering an indignity to a body.

Most Read