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Set in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, Kootenay National Park promises a bevy of quintessential Canadian experiences. From scenic drives through the mountains to challenging hikes in the backcountry, Kootenay National Park immerses you in the magnificent natural beauty of Western Canada. The wildlife watching is incredible, with the chance to spot grizzly bears, elk, and, of course, the park's famous bighorn sheep. You'll love discovering the diverse landscape, which ranges from shimmering glaciers, icy blue rivers, and cascading waterfalls, to sunbaked cacti, deep canyons, and arid grasslands.
Are the mountains calling your name? Book an RV in British Columbia and you can explore Kootenay National Park at your own pace. With three maintained campgrounds to choose from, sleeping under the stars in Kootenay National Park is easy. With a motorhome on wheels, you'll have the freedom to visit other Canadian gems like Banff National Park in Alberta and Yoho National Park in British Columbia.
With 125 miles of marked trails to explore, Kootenay National Park is a paradise for hikers. Perfect for families with young kids, the stroller-friendly boardwalk around Olive Lake takes around 15 minutes to complete. Experienced hikers can take on the challenging ten-mile Kindersley-Sinclair Loop that winds through flower-filled alpine meadows and up steep mountain ridges. The five-mile hike to Stanley Glacier is another rewarding day hike. Walk five minutes along the Juniper Trail to snap a photo on the famous red Muskoka chairs.
Prefer to stay behind the wheel? Discover Kootenay National Park on the 58-mile Banff-Windermere Highway. The scenic drive takes you to beautiful viewpoints and picnic spots, including Numa Falls. If you want to stretch your legs along the way, try one of the short self-guided interpretive walks. As you cruise along the highway, keep an eye out for herds of resident bighorn sheep. They're often seen grazing on the side of the road and wandering through the Radium Hot Springs town center. There's also a chance to spot grizzly and black bears, as well as wolves, elk, and moose.
Kootenay National Park campers with an interest in geology will jump at the chance to join guided Burgess Shale hikes that take you deep into the Canadian Rocky Mountains UNESCO World Heritage Site. You'll uncover more than 500 million years of history and discover a treasure trove of ancient fossils. The fishing at Kootenay National Park is excellent, with the chance to reel in trout, cutthroat, and other freshwater species.
Kootenay National Park maintains three family-friendly campgrounds. Set on a sun-drenched plateau, Redstreak Campground features more than 240 wooded sites. The forest setting means you'll enjoy plenty of shade, as well as privacy from your neighbors. Sites on the outer edge of Redstreak treat you to sweeping views of the Columbia Valley and Purcell Mountains.
Fifty Redstreak sites are full-service with water and sewer lines, as well as electric connections of 15 to 30 amps. You'll also enjoy access to modern bathroom blocks with flush toilets and hot showers. There's also an RV dump station. Stay up after dark to roast s'mores around the fireplace and admire the twinkling canopy of stars. A steep one-mile trail winds down to the Radium Hot Springs town center, or you can take a longer trail to the thermal pools. It's best to book in advance if you're RV camping over a weekend in July and August.
Sandwiched between a pair of lakes, Marble Canyon Campground offers 61 sites, including 30 RV-accessible sites available on a first-come, first-served basis. McLeod Meadows Campground is set on the banks of the Kootenay River and offers 80 sites for your camper rental. You'll love falling asleep to the sounds of the rumbling river and waking up to knockout views of the Rocky Mountains.
Don't miss the opportunity to see some of the star attractions nearby on your Kootenay National Park camping trip. Perched on the southwest corner of Kootenay National Park, Radium Hot Springs is a hub for gas stations and grocery stores. The lively mountain town is also filled with mom-and-pop cafes and cozy restaurants. For hearty fare, enjoy schnitzel, bratwurst, and beer at one of the Bavarian inspired taverns. After a long day of hiking, there's nothing better than an invigorating soak in Radium Hot Springs. The springs are famous for their mineral-rich waters loaded with calcium, magnesium, and sulphate.
There's plenty to keep adventure seekers entertained in the Kootenays, from whitewater rafting expeditions on Toby Creek to guided hikes on Stanley Glacier. For a remote wilderness experience, hit the trails and explore Mt. Assiniboine Provincial Park. Come winter, gear up for ice climbing, backcountry skiing, and snowshoeing in Marble Canyon. Calgary is a two-hour drive from Radium Hot Springs and offers a good selection of RV rentals near Kootenay National Park. On the Pacific Coast, Vancouver is another popular city to kickstart a Canadian road trip.