I like to be alone in the wild. I know it's not the wisest thing to do, but I do it anyway (and I'm not the only one).

Today I learned that some routes in Canadian national parks may enforce minimum group sizes. What routes in the Canadian Rockies enforce minimum group sizes, and where can I find information on those? I didn't find anything on the Jasper National Park website.

  • I know it's not the wisest thing to do... You just have to know your own abilities and use good judgment. The comment you linked to says that the rule is because of bears. I'd like to understand the logic better. Are we talking about grizzlies? Here in California, where we only have black bears, bear problems are worst in areas that are overused, which would be the opposite of the Canadian rule...
    – user2169
    Apr 26, 2014 at 23:14
  • 1
    @BenCrowell I don't know. In fact, I wouldn't mind going with a group, but finding a group of 2–4 people with whom I get along 2 weeks in the wilderness is a highly non-trivial problem.
    – gerrit
    Apr 27, 2014 at 12:39
  • @BenCrowell To expand on that; regardless of ones abilities, I do believe it is safer to be in a group. I think the reason for the minimum group size is because grizzly bears are more likely to notice a large group, which reduces the probability of a chance encounter.
    – gerrit
    Apr 27, 2014 at 23:02

1 Answer 1


I can't speak for Jasper National Park, although you'll want to check out this page on warnings and closures regularly, but for Banff National Park the two areas that are commonly restricted to group access are Moraine Lake/Larch Valley/Sentinel Pass/Mt. Temple/Paradise Valley area (groups of 4 minimum, from mid-July to early October) and the Minnewanka/Mt. Aylmer area from mid-July to mid-September. Again, Banff has their own page that lists restrictions and closures.

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