Planning ahead

Kootenay National Park

Part of the UNESCO Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks World Heritage Site, Kootenay National Park connects the glaciated peaks of Banff National Park with the warm and gentle Columbia Valley near Radium Hot Springs, British Columbia. Here are 5 things to do before you arrive to make your visit easier and more fun.

Pre-arrival checklist

  1. Get your park pass - Pick up your Discovery Pass online or from any Parks Canada partner today.
  2. Reserve a place to stay - From mid-June through mid-September, campgrounds are busy. Arrive early at first-come, first-served campgrounds or reserve ahead at Redstreak Campground. We also recommend booking your hotel, hostel or B&B in the Village of Radium Hot Springs before you travel. 
  3. Take the stewardship pledge - Remember, a fed animal is a dead animal. Please, never feed wildlife or leave food or garbage outside. It is illegal here. Secure your food in a car. Put all trash in bear-proof garbage bins. Stay in your vehicle when watching wildlife at the roadside. What else? These are our Top Tips.
  4. Check seasons and seasonal closures - Some popular hikes, such as the Rockwall, are in an alpine environment and are inaccessible until July due to snowpack and avalanche risk. The park is a dynamic environment! Keep an eye on seasonal and safety closures to avoid disappointment.

  5. Download the Kootenay guided audio tour – Enjoy a guided audio tour of one of BC’s most scenic highways. Hear behind-the-scenes stories from Parks Canada staff and get insider tips on where to stop. Available from the App Store and Google Play.

Bonus tips

  1. Soak or swim at the Radium Hot Springs pool - After a full day of hiking and sightseeing relax your muscles in the naturally heated mineral hot pools at the south end of the park. Open year round. Fees apply.
  2. Write down the Visitor Centre hours - Consult the helpful Visitor Centre in the village of Radium Hot Springs for advice about trails, experiences and other information to help you make the most of your national park adventure.
  3. Brush up on local safety tips - There is no cell service in Kootenay National Park. Here are some tips for the drivers, hikers, campers and winter enthusiasts. Simple steps to look, act and be safe like a local.
  4. Plan at least one guided activity - Take a guided hike to the Burgess Shale at Stanley Glacier or spend an hour with a park interpreter. There are free daily offers throughout the summer. Drop by a Parks Canada Visitor Centre for more information and a detailed schedule.
  5. Get off the beaten path - Kootenay is the quietest of the four Rocky Mountain national parks. It is the perfect place to unplug from the hustle and bustle. Pick a trail and explore at your leisure.

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