CAPTION: A campsite at Whistlers Campground in Jasper National Park. | Parks Canada / Matt QuiringMatt Quiring

On your mark and get set for Parks Canada to say ‘go’ for launch, allowing the public to make camping reservations for the 2024 visitor season.

For Jasper National Park, the reservation system will open starting at 8 a.m. (local park time) on Jan. 30 and then on Feb. 1 for backcountry camping.

These are not the same dates for all Parks Canada reservation sites.

“The launch dates for the various Parks Canada administered places will be spread throughout January and February to help spread visitor demand and provide an improved reservation experience,” read a Parks Canada statement.

In Alberta, the first locations available for booking will be Elk Island National Park, Rocky Mountain House National Historic Site, Waterton Lakes National Park, and Wood Buffalo National Park. That will be on Jan. 24.

For Banff National Park, the system will open on Jan. 26 with backcountry camping reservations starting Jan. 29. Bookings for the Hidden Lake Guided Hike will start on Jan. 23 and the reservable shuttles to Moraine Lake and the Lake Louise lakeshore will open on April 18.

Reservations for those shuttle seats are required for the entire 2024 operating season and must be made in advance. Those reservations can be booked online on the Parks Canada website at  or by calling 1-877-RESERVE (1-877-737-3783). 

Exact dates for each national park and national historic site can be found on the Parks Canada website at:

Parks Canada recommends that visitors familiarize themselves in advance with the online reservation system. You will need to create an account, which you can sign into ahead of time to practice. It is also a good idea to have a backup plan in case your first choice of camping time and location isn’t available. 

“National Parks in Alberta are very popular and some of the busiest in the country. Reservations fill up quickly,” the statement read.

“Due to heightened demand, visitors are encouraged to be flexible, consider visiting during the week rather than weekends or visiting during shoulder seasons, or explore lesser-known, but equally spectacular, hidden gems by visiting the Parks Canada website for travel guidance and options.”

Further helpful information can be found by reading Camping 101: What to know before staying the nightarticle on the Parks Canada website. It offers tips on booking your campsite as well as the various amenities and services you can find at Parks Canada administered places, plus essential tips (for new campers) and rules to keep in mind (for every visitor).

By Scott Hayes, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Jan 09, 2024 at 10:00

This item reprinted with permission from    The Fitzhugh    Jasper, Alberta

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