Water Safety and Sustainability | Canmore Kananaskis
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Water Safety and Sustainability

Water Safety and Sustainability Tips For Your Visit to Canmore and Kananaskis

Here in Canmore Kananaskis, we take great pride in our beautiful lakes and rivers and are committed to keeping them pristine. Learn how to protect our waterways by cleaning your equipment properly, and ensure you also protect yourself when you are out enjoying the water. Keep these expert safety tips in mind to ensure you are protecting the environment and yourself on your next water adventure.

If you are bringing your own gear and equipment to the rivers and lakes in Canmore and Kananaskis, make sure you follow the recommended guidelines by Alberta Parks to protect our rivers and lakes against Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) and Whirling Disease. Clean, Drain, and Dry your gear after every use, and let your equipment dry out completely between uses.  

Clean: all mud, sand, plant, and animal materials. Rinse, scrub, or pressure wash your equipment away from storm drains, ditches, or waterways. 

Drain: all water from coolers, buckets, compartments, and other items that may hold water. Remember to “Pull the Plug” as it is illegal to transport watercrafts with the drain plug still in place.  

Dry: for a minimum of 24 hours before entering new waters. Drying times can vary in our national parks – make sure to check the Parks Canada regulations if you plan on using a watercraft or equipment in the national parks.

Equipment is anything that has been in contact with water, including: stand-up paddleboards, kayaks, canoes, boats, motors, trailers, bait buckets, waders, floating rafts, flotation devices, and lifejackets. 

Wear a life jacket: Everyone paddling is legally required to have a lifejacket or Personal Flotation Device (PFD) that fits comfortably 

Be aware of cold temperatures: Water in Kananaskis Country is often glacier-fed, meaning lakes and rivers are colder than average, even in the summer heat. Swimming in cold water can lead to hypothermia or death by drowning.  

Wear sun protection: Always wear sunscreen and wear UV protection layers to prevent sunburn and heatstroke.

Stay hydrated: If you’re planning on spending the day on the water, make sure you pack lots of water to prevent dehydration.

All vehicles stopping in the parks and public lands of Kananaskis Country and the Bow Valley corridor are required to purchase a Kananaskis Conservation Pass. Day and annual passes can be purchased online – annual passes can cover up to three vehicles.