Category Archives: 2013 Floods

Elk Lakes’ refurbished trail system

The core trails in B.C.’s Elk Lakes Provincial Park are fully functional again following a three-year recovery from the floods of 2013. But one of the most popular trails into the park via West Elk Pass has been relocated and no longer travels direct to Upper Elk Lake. Nearby Peter Lougheed Provincial Park in Alberta took a big hit from the 2013 floods, but all the trails in Elk Lakes […]

Jasper’s South Boundary Trail revisited

We originally hiked and measured Jasper Park’s South Boundary Trail many years ago, but a lot has changed since then. Wildfires, floods, rampaging grizzly bears (well, we did have a rampaging grizzly bear). The only way we can keep the Canadian Rockies Trail Guide up-to-date for long, remote backpacks, like the South Boundary, is through updates from our readers. Jim Shipley is one of those contributors. Every summer, Jim and […]

Banff National Park: 9 days in the backcountry

  One of the pleasures of writing this blog is receiving queries from backpackers seeking advice on trips into remote reaches of the Mountain Parks. I received a couple of these this spring, including one from a Jim Shipley of Calgary, who was planning a two-week trip through the eastern Front Ranges of Banff National Park. After checking out his proposed route, and conferring with Parks Canada’s Don Gorrie, I […]

New hiking bridges in Kootenay National Park

Kootenay National Park’s Paint Pots and Stanley Glacier trails are fully operational again thanks to the installation of two bridges. Spring washouts in recent years have been hard on bridges throughout the Mountain Parks. One of the most popular of these was the span over the Vermilion River to the Paint Pots in Kootenay National Park. (See Paint Pots and Rockwall Trail detour, July 24, 2013 blog posting.) A new bridge […]

Stanley Glacier trail closed for repairs in Kootenay National Park

One of Kootenay Park’s most popular half-day hikes, the 4.2-km Stanley Glacier trail (161), will be closed from Wednesday, July 16 to August 31 while the flood-damaged trailhead bridge over the Vermilion River is being replaced. Restrooms and the south half of the parking lot at the trailhead will be available for roadside day use during construction (see “Important Bulletins” on the Kootenay Park website). Following repairs to the Stanley […]

Waterton’s Akamina Parkway reopens

The Akamina Parkway, which runs for 16 km from Waterton townsite to Cameron Lake in Waterton Lakes National Park, suffered serious damage from a major storm on June 19. Several washouts and roadbed collapses forced closure of the road for the remainder of the summer and rendered some of park’s most popular hiking trails inaccessible. (See Hiking Trail Update for Waterton Lakes National Park on this site. ) But following […]

Rebuilding bridges in Banff

According to Banff National Park superintendent Dave McDonough, the record storm and flooding that hit the Canadian Rockies in June 2013 caused $19 million in damage to the park. Approximately half of that was to infrastructure, and much of that was the loss of 49 bridges on backcountry trails. But a lot of repair work has been completed since the storm. The Spray River bridge at km-6 on the Spray […]

Highway 40 reopens over Highwood Pass

Highway 40 running over Highwood Pass in Kananaskis Country reopened on September 4, 2013, for the first time this year following June flooding that damaged several sections of the road. It is the highest public road in Canada and provides access to several popular hiking trails and routes in Peter Lougheed Provincial Park, including Elbow Lake (205) and Ptarmigan Cirque (206). The highway reopening extends south from its junction with […]

Sunshine Meadows shuttle cancelled for the season

The popular hiker’s shuttle bus to Sunshine Meadows has been stalled all summer by June (2013) flooding that washed out many sections of the Sunshine Road. Shuttle operator White Mountain Adventures had hopes of getting back on the road sometime in August, but damage was extensive and sections of the road are still under construction. As a result, they reluctantly cancelled their bus service for the 2013 season on Wednesday, […]

Jasper Park’s Jonas-Brazeau Loop reopens

One of Jasper’s most popular backcountry hikes, the Jonas Pass-Brazeau Lake Loop, reopened this week following reconstruction of the bridge at Brazeau River Campground. The multi-day backpack traverses Nigel, Jonas and Poboktan Passes and visits Brazeau Lake, one of the park’s largest backcountry lakes. The bridge was washed out during the June 2013 flood (see my earlier post on the washout along the Jonas Pass-Brazeau Lake Loop) that destroyed dozens […]