Important notices

Flooding and high water flows in the Bighorn Backcountry are making many roads, crossings and trails in this area unsafe. There may be unmarked trail damage and stream crossings that have been compromised.

Travellers in the Bighorn Backcountry should exercise caution and be prepared for excursions to take longer than anticipated. Whether recreating over land or by water, know before you go, be responsible and encourage others to do the same.

Trail and area closures

Emergency non-motorized trail closure: Cline River - A portion of the Cline River Trail has been closed due to bear activity. The closure will remain in effect until July 15, 2020.

On July 7, fish and wildlife officers received information from a third party about a bear encounter that occurred at a campsite about 2kms from a staging area along the trail. The bear allegedly got into some backpacks and may have also entered a tent. Officers have not been able to speak to the individuals that were involved in the encounter, but found evidence of garbage that appears to have bite marks from a bear on it.

This is a reminder of the importance of being BearSmart while recreating in bear country. Although serious attacks are rare, you should always be cautious and alert when enjoying the outdoors. For tips on how to prevent a bear encounter while hiking, fishing, camping, and biking in bear country, visit Bears and outdoor recreation. You can call our 24/7 Report A Poacher line at 1-800-642-3800 to report any bear encounters.

Cline River closure map (PDF, 556 KB)

Emergency Trail Closure: East Bush Falls – Trail Flooding

As of July 7, 2020, the East Bush Falls trail located SE of the Nordegg townsite is temporarily closed until further notice due to severe flooding.

Emergency OHV trail closures: Delayed Snow Melt – Hummingbird, Bighorn Dam, Tershishner/Crescent Falls Areas

Heavy spring snow and high water has rendered the majority of trails at Hummingbird, Bighorn Dam and Tershishner/Crescent Falls areas impassable. Upon assessment and request by the volunteers who maintain these trails for your use, the Bighorn Heritage ATV Society and the Alberta Off Highway Vehicle Association, these trails will remain closed to OHV access until at least July 15, 2020 at which time they will be reassessed.

Photo of Bighorn back country trail snow

Regular timing restrictions for trails can be found below and on the 2020 Bighorn Backcountry PLUZ brochure located at:

For other trail or area closures located outside of the Bighorn Backcountry PLUZ, visit:

Trail and area updates

Effective July 1, 2020
Trail or Area Public Land Use Zone Details
  • **Bighorn Dam Area
  • **Tershishner Area (Crescent Falls) Trails T1, T3-T9
  • Eagle Lake Trail (New)
  • Kiska/Willson
  • Upper Clearwater/Ram
**Bighorn Dam, Tershishner (Crescent Falls) area trails are closed until at least July 15 due to heavy spring snow and high water (please see emergency OHV trail closure notice).

Eagle Lake trail denoted in light purple on the brochure is currently open to off-highway vehicle (OHV) use and snow vehicle use until April 30, 2021.
  • Brazeau River Trail
  • Job/Cline
  • Kiska/Willson
  • Upper Clearwater/Ram
Brazeau River trail denoted in orange on the brochure is currently open to off-highway vehicle (OHV) use until February 1, 2021 and snow vehicle use until April 30, 2021.
  • **Onion Creek Trail
  • **Hummingbird Creek Trail
  • Job/Cline
  • Kiska/Willson
  • Upper Clearwater/Ram
**Onion Creek and Hummingbird Creek trails are closed to OHV use until at least July 15 due to heavy spring snow and high water (please see emergency OHV trail closure notice).
  • Clearwater Wagon Trail
  • Panther River Wagon Trail
  • Upper Clearwater/Ram
  • Panther Corners

Wagon trails are open to wagon use until April 30, 2021.

Effective June 1, 2020
Trail or Area Public Land Use Zone Details
  • Allstones Lake Trail
  • Waterfalls Creek Trail
  • Trails to Landslide Lake and Lake of the Falls
  • Kiska/Willson
Trails closed for equestrian use. These trails will remain closed for equestrian use until October 1, 2020.
Effective May 1, 2020
Trail or Area Public Land Use Zone Details
  • Whitegoat Trail
  • Joyce Creek
  • Clearwater Trail/Skeleton Creek Trail
  • Canary Creek Trail
  • Ranger Creek Trail
  • Job/Cline
  • Kiska/Willson
  • Upper Clearwater/Ram
Trails denoted in dark green are currently closed to off-highway vehicle (OHV) use and snow vehicle use until December 1, 2020.
  • Peppers Lake Trails (New)
  • Kiska/Willson

Trails denoted in magenta are currently closed to off-highway vehicle use and snow vehicle use until December 1, 2020.

  • Sugarbowl Random Sledding Area
  • Onion Lake Random Sledding Area
  • Ranger Creek Random Sledding Area
  • Scalp Creek Random Sledding Area
  • Job/Cline
  • Upper Clearwater/Ram
Random sledding areas are closed to snow vehicle use until December 1, 2020.
Effective July 19, 2010
Trail or Area Public Land Use Zone Details
  • Wapiabi Cave
  • Blackstone/Wapiabi

Wapiabi Cave is CLOSED to prevent the spread of White-nose Syndrome to bats.

Please ensure that you take the necessary steps to prevent the spread of White-nose Syndrome to local bat populations.

Area information for Bighorn Backcountry

Find general information, maps and brochures for Alberta’s Public Land Use Zones both within and beyond the Bighorn Backcountry.

Bighorn Backcountry information kiosks

The Bighorn Backcountry map and brochure are available at information kiosks located in the following areas:

  • Allstones Lake Staging Area (north of creek)
  • Allstones Random Camping (south of creek)
  • Bighorn Dam
  • Blackstone River
  • Coliseum Trail Staging Area
  • Coral Creek Staging Area
  • Crescent Falls Provincial Recreation Area
  • Cutoff Creek Staging Area
  • Eagle Creek Public Land Recreation Area
  • Eagle Lake Trail / Scalp Creek Trail
  • Hummingbird Staging Area (Canary Creek and Ranger Creek)
  • Landslide Lake Staging Area
  • Nordegg Rail Trail Connector Staging Area
  • Nordegg Ranger Station Staging Area
  • North Ram River
  • Panther Corners Public Land Recreation Area
  • Panther River Trail near Panther Patrol Cabin
  • Pinto Lake Staging Area
  • Preachers Point River Access
  • Wapiabi Trail Staging Area

Contact

Connect with Alberta Environment and Parks Resource and Approvals staff for any questions about safety and enjoyment or management of the area:

Hours: 8:15 am to 4:30 pm (open Monday to Friday, closed statutory holidays)

Laura Raivio
Email: laura.raivio@gov.ab.ca

Wayne Crocker
Email: wayne.crocker@gov.ab.ca

Don Livingston
Email: don.livingston@gov.ab.ca

John Tchir
Email: john.tchir@gov.ab.ca