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New trail designations – Provincial trails
Know before you go. Review the regulations for recreation on provincial trails before heading out.
About public land use zones
A Public Land Use Zone (PLUZ) is an area of public land to which legislative controls apply under authority of the Public Lands Administration Regulation (187/2011) to assist in the management of recreational land uses.
- A PLUZ is created for a specific land base and the unique conditions that exist within that land base.
- A PLUZ is established to better manage recreation that occurs in a specific area.
- Rules and regulations for a PLUZ are designed to protect areas containing sensitive resources and manage recreation.
- PLUZs are not designated as parks or protected areas.
Kananaskis Conservation Pass required
A Kananaskis Conservation Pass is required to access Kananaskis Country and the Bow Valley Corridor with your vehicle. For more information, see:
Public Lands Camping Pass required
A Public Lands Camping Pass is required to random camp on public land along the eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains.
Within a PLUZ:
- Obey all posted signs and notices.
- If camping, limit your stay to no more than 14 days in the same location. After 14 days, you must move a distance of at least 1km away for 72 hours.
- Camping and open fires are not permitted within 1 km of a public land recreation area or provincial recreation area located within a PLUZ.
- Camping and fires are not permitted within 1 km of a road within Kananaskis PLUZ, McLean Creek Off-Highway Vehicle PLUZ, Sibbald Snow Vehicle PLUZ, and Cataract Creek Snow Vehicle PLUZ.
- No motorized vehicles are permitted to leave the road other than to use trails designated for an off-highway vehicles (OHV) of a particular size or type.
- Trail designations indicate the maximum vehicle width accepted for trail sustainability. Vehicles the same width or smaller than those indicated are allowed.
- Leave nothing behind. All waste including garbage, recycling, compost and human waste should be taken home or to a dump station for proper disposal.
- Report illegal activity – contact 310-LAND (5263) to report concerns.
- Non-compliance with the regulations of the PLUZ you are visiting may result in prosecution.
Regional Plans and recreation
Currently, there are 19 PLUZs covering approximately 11,200 square kilometres (4,324.34 square miles) of public land in Alberta. There are additions and changes for PLUZs within each regional plan that has been approved. Know B4 U Go and be aware of boundaries and regulations. See also PLUZ Regulations.
Lower Athabasca Regional Plan Map (PDF, 1.61 MB)
- Six new areas are identified under the regional plan and are being established as Public Use Zones (one for conservation and five for recreation and tourism)
South Saskatchewan Regional Plan Map (PDF, 701 KB)
- Recreation management planning with stakeholders for key areas beginning in fall of 2014. Public Land Use Zones will be established to support implementation of the regional plan and the recreation management planning.
Sustainable trail management
The Trails Act marks a new approach to managing trails on Alberta’s public lands to ensure sustainable use and enjoyment for all users.
The Trails Act provides guidance and structure for trail use in our province’s growing recreation and tourism sector, allowing for better trail experiences for Albertans by ensuring high quality, well managed and safe designated trails. For full details, see:
Permitted recreation activities
See the following for maps and for activities permitted in each PLUZ:
- Northern PLUZs – Upper Athabasca-North
- Central PLUZs – Saskatchewan-Bighorn Backcountry
- Southern PLUZs – South Saskatchewan
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