Crystal-clear lakes, jaw-dropping scenery, and picturesque mountain ranges are a few of the perfect words to describe the beauty of Waterton. It is a quiet place just a few hours away from Lethbridge and Calgary that usually becomes crowded from July to September.
Waterton Lakes National Park, the place’s main attraction, is one of Canada’s most popular camping spots. So go ahead and enjoy camping near Waterton.
1. Waterton Lakes National Park
The park is over 125 years old and borders Montana around the Glacier National Park area. This park is also home to over 250 unique bird species and over 60 mammal species. Therefore, it is a highly diverse place in terms of biodiversity.
Campers, adventurers, and hikers come here to enjoy their time. Not only Waterton but also the areas surrounding Waterton Lakes National Park serve as unique locations for camping, hiking, and other leisure activities.
1.1. Waterton Townsite Campground
Townsite Campground, located in the heart of Waterton, is one of the most famous campgrounds for exploring the Waterton Lakes National Park.
The Townsite campground is a drive-up close to the main town. Prebook the sites to prevent any last-minute rush.
Some of the facilities available at this campground include dump stations, showers, toilets, and special wheelchair-accessible services.
The nightly charges for each site at the Townsite Campground are generally between $24–$40.
1.2. Belly River Campground
Belly River Campground is another drive-up campsite in Waterton Lakes National Park. Campers and visitors can enjoy the beautiful view of the Waterton Lakes.
This rustic campground is on a first-served basis and has only 24 campsites. Reservations can be made by calling (403) 859-2224.
1.3. Fort Heritage and Frontier RV Park
If you are looking for a perfect RV park and campsite near Waterton Lakes National Park, this is the one for you. There are ample pull-through sites and powered RV pads.
This park will give you a scenic view of the magnificent Rocky Mountain Ranges and is just 10 minutes from Waterton Lakes. It is, therefore, a perfect RV camping site, too.
The RV and Caravan spots cost about $27-$33 per night, while the campsite costs around $23. Since there are only 20 campsites, a reservation is advisable by visiting their official website.
1.4. Prairies Peak Campground
Located about 50 kilometers from Waterton Lakes National Park, Prairies Peak Campground is another great place for camping, with the Rocky Mountains at its backdrop.
Many amenities are available here, like RV camping sites, potable drinking water, playgrounds, a pool for fishing and boating, and on-site laundry. The charge for a night is around $50, and a reservation has to be made.
2. Activities for Nature Enthusiasts
Camping near Waterton Lakes National Park is a fun thing to do, no doubt it. There are many adventurous journeys you can hop on. A few are mentioned below.
2.1. Hop on Your Vehicle to Enjoy the Parkways
Just staying at your campsite might get boring, so use the time you have on your hands. Explore the parkways near the park. The Red Rock Parkway is a good place to enjoy the scenic sites while driving. You can also stop at the pull-offs to click pictures or enjoy the beauty of nature,
2.2. Visit the Lakes and Enjoy Water Activities
If you love water activities like fishing, canoeing, boating, or just sitting near the lakeside, don’t miss out on the beautiful lakes near Waterton. Some of them include Goat Lake, Twin Lake, and Lineham Lakes.
Who doesn’t like getting lost looking at the vast sky, right? In that case, carry your binoculars to look at the craters of the Moon, planets, and Constellations like the Big Dipper and our Milky Way Galaxy.
Do not forget to bring some warm blankets, clothes and a lot of excitement!
3. Winter Wonderland: Cozy Camping Near Waterton Lakes
Winters can get rough here, but if you are willing to strive through the roughs and toughs, you are welcome to camp near Waterton.
You can camp at non-designated Waterton Lakes National Park campsites by paying the applicable park fees. Before visiting the park during winter, please call (403) 859-5133 to reserve a spot or visit the official website.
You need to pack enough resources to survive the harsh climate, like proper sleeping bags, food, and courage as the weather gets chilly. But the rough weather doesn’t mean you cannot enjoy your time here.
Hop on the hiking journey through the snow-covered hiking trails and enjoy the beauty. Indulge in other activities, including sledding, skiing, and snow-shoeing down Prince of Wales Hill. You can also spot elks that move in herds during winter.
4. Backcountry Camping Near Waterton
Backcountry camping is an excellent way to experience rougher and more adventurous camping. It requires much more hard work, but backcountry camping won’t disappoint you if you are a true adventurer.
Get to feel the natural beauty of Waterton Lakes and get a more rugged experience.
It will require much more planning and hiking to reach the actual campsites. A total of ten backcountry campsites are there near Waterton, including Alderson Lake, Lineham Lake, Bertha Bay, Goat Lake, and many more.
You must also reserve a spot here by calling (403) 859-5133 and paying a non-refundable fee of $11.50 – 90 days before your trip. Fires are also allowed on a few sites, and you should check more about the facilities on their official websites.
5. Essential Insights
Camping near Waterton requires research and reservation before visiting, as it gets crowded during the peak season. Nonetheless, the weather in Waterton during these months is usually pleasant, with blue skies, clear sunny days, and a bit dry climate.
- The maximum temperature is generally 23-25°C.
- The lowest can dip up to 9 °C during the night.
- Weather is the driest during these months; however, it might also rain.
- Winters usually start in October and last till early May, when the temperature can be as low as -1 °C during the day and -10°C at night.
Reservation is another vital thing that you need to keep in mind before planning a visit here. Reservation information has been provided above. However, check the concerned campground’s official website for more information.
Indeed, the campgrounds are located in the wild. Perhaps it is essential to take proper precautions to avoid contact with any wild animal. Grizzly bears are especially familiar to spot here.
- Carrying bear spray and packing food and other items in smell-proof containers are ways to prevent any risks.
- Do not try to move close to the bear cubs out of curiosity, as the mama cub might be around.
- If you bring pets, put them on a leash so they don’t wander into the wild or do not disturb others.
- Make sure to clean the campsite and not litter around.
- Also, bring adequate food, clothes, and other essentials to prevent emergencies.
Camping near Waterton is an excellent way to get time for yourself and your family to enjoy the beauty of Mother Nature. Hoping on adventures is always an adrenaline rush for many.
During warmer months, explore scenic trails, enjoy the vibrant wildflowers, and immerse in the beauty of lakeside campsites. Waterton’s diverse wildlife also adds excitement as you proceed toward your hikes.
As winter approaches, the entire region is covered with snow, so enjoy chilly winds and warm campfires. Waterton camping is not just a getaway but a harmonious blend of natural beauty and outdoor adventures.