Safety and guidelines

Bar U Ranch National Historic Site

Demeurez en sécurité en profitant de tout ce que le lieu historique national du Ranch-Bar U a à offrir.


Service dogs are permitted on site. However, service dogs are not permitted on any wagon visitor experience. For the safety of you, your pet, and the livestock, pets are not allowed in the historic site’s grounds or in the Visitor Centre.


Do not feed or try to pet livestock. Do not climb on fences or enter corrals.

Draft horses are at work when they are pulling a wagon or standing at a hitching post. Follow the directions of the wagon driver or footman when entering and exiting the wagon. Do not walk directly in front, behind or between the draft horse team and the wagon.

Use caution on the Pekisko Creek Trail. There may be cows grazing in the area.

Help keep the ranch clean

Practice the principles of Leave No Trace when visiting Bar U Ranch. Take special care to dispose of garbage and to not leave food unattended. Unattended food may attract wildlife.

Common wildlife

Common wildlife at Bar U Ranch includes deer, coyotes and ground squirrels. Following these safety precautions protects both wildlife and yourself.

  • Keep a minimum of three bus lengths (30 metres / 100 feet) away from deer and moose and ten bus lengths (100 metres / 325 feet) away from coyotes, foxes and bears. If you cause an animal to move, you are too close.
  • Never follow, approach, entice or pet wildlife (of any size!).
  • Never feed wildlife. A fed animal is a dead animal. Feeding wildlife is prohibited by law and may lead to a fine of up to $ 25,000.
  • Do not put anyone at risk by posing with wildlife for photos.
  • Use a telephoto lens or binoculars for a closer look at any wildlife on the ranch.

Insects and ticks

Ticks, mosquitoes, black flies, wasps, bees and other small insects are found on site at the Bar U Ranch.

April through November is tick season! Ticks are found in grassy or wooded areas and drop from leaves or blades of grass onto animals and humans. They are tiny, brownish/red in color and look like a little beetle. They bite through the skin and attach themselves. Infection from ticks may be harmful.

  • Wear long-sleeve shirts and pants. If wearing shorts and short-sleeve shirts, check for ticks periodically.
  • Some insect repellents are labelled to repel ticks; it is not known how effective these are.
  • Keep out of tall grass when walking the trails.

Bear safety

Bears occasionally wander onto the grounds of Bar U Ranch. Bears are wild animals and their space must be respected. Stop by our visitor centre for updates on bear sightings.

  • If you spot a bear, notify site staff immediately. Pack up your belongings, leave the area and stay at least 100 metres (325 feet) away.
  • Watch for fresh bear signs. Tracks, droppings, diggings, torn-up logs and turned-over rocks are all signs that a bear has been in the area. Leave the area if signs appear to be new or fresh.
  • Larger size groups are less likely to have a serious bear encounter. We recommend hiking in a tight group of four or more. Never let children wander.
  • Stay on trail by only travelling on officially marked paths and trails.


If the weather in southern Alberta is not to your liking, wait five minutes and it will surely change! It is often windy in the foothills regardless of the temperature, and it is possible to have rain, snow and sun all in the same day. Come prepared for any type of weather, with proper outerwear and footwear.

The rays from the sun, especially between 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m., can be damaging. Wear a hat and sunscreen, and stay in the shade as much as possible. Drinking lots of water will help keep you hydrated and help prevent dehydration and heat stroke. Current conditions and forecast


The Bar U Ranch National Historic Site covers a large area. The landscape contains numerous depressions, brush-filled areas and natural hazards such as gopher holes, which are not always obvious to the eye because of the long grass.

Smoking and vaping

There is a designated smoking area in front of the visitor centre. Smoking is not permitted on the site’s grounds.

Cannabis use at Parks Canada places

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