Akamina-Kishinena Provincial Park
History and conservation
Akamina Kishinena Provincial Park is located in the southeast corner of British Columbia. This small BC provincial park in the Flathead River Valley is adjacent to the much larger Waterton Lakes National Park and US Glacier National Park in Alberta and Montana which together form the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park UNESCO World Heritage Site at the narrowest point of the Rocky Mountains.
Since 1917 conservationists have advocated that a much larger protected area be established in the BC Flathead that would be worthy of adding to and completing the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park.
Preserves and protects the habitat of the last self-sustaining grizzly bear population in the United States, as well as a winter range for goats and big horn sheep. Protected plant species include the rare Mimulus luteus (yellow monkey flower) and the rare Papaver pygmaeum (pigmy poppy) that are found nowhere else in BC.
The trails and passes of the Akamina-Kishinena were used for many years by the early people’s and wildlife travelling between the Flathead Basin and the abundant Great Plains. For instance, the Kootenai aboriginal people travelled through South Kootenay Pass to reach the plains for trading and buffalo hunting.
The spectacular southeast corner of the province was recommended for preservation as early as 1917. In 1995 Akamina-Kishinena became a class A provincial park. The closest communities are Waterton Park and Fernie. The park covers an area of 109.21 km².
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