Manitoba Environment, Climate and Parks is advising a mandatory evacuation order and an expanded closure area in the northern portion of Whiteshell Provincial Park are now in effect.
Rising water levels and rapidly evolving conditions are posing a significant risk to public safety.
The Whiteshell Provincial Park evacuation and closure area, which took effect at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, May 24, extends from the Seven Sisters entrance at the north end of the park along Provincial Road (PR) 307 eastward to the junction of PR 307 and PR 309. Affected areas include Sylvia Lake, Eleanor Lake, Otter Falls, Dorothy Lake, Barrier Bay, Nutimik Lake and Betula Lake. No person shall reside in or enter the closure area. The closure area applies to all cottage subdivisions, commercial areas, campgrounds, group use, day use, recreational and picnic areas, playgrounds, trails and beaches. Additionally, all backcountry campsites are closed in Whiteshell Provincial Park.
Due to multiple road washouts, travel is still not advised in Duck Mountain and Nopiming provincial parks. All campgrounds, canoe routes and backcountry campsites are closed in Duck Mountain, Nopiming and Manigotagan River provincial parks. Some trails in Beaudry, Turtle Mountain and Whiteshell provincial parks are also closed including the Mantario Trail.
Watercraft restrictions remain in place in Nopiming and Whiteshell provincial parks to help protect flooded shorelines from erosion. Recreational motor boat traffic is prohibited from operating within 100 metres of shorelines. Several boat launches are closed in the Whiteshell and all traffic on Whiteshell lakes should be aware of debris and areas of floating bog. Details on watercraft restrictions and launch closures are available at www.manitobaparks.com.
The following campgrounds have closures and delayed openings in place:
- Whiteshell Provincial Park nightly and seasonal campgrounds at Otter Falls, Opapiskaw, Dorothy Lake, Nutimik Lake, Betula Lake and White Lake, and the nightly campground at Big Whiteshell Lake, are closed until at least June 6 under the evacuation order in the northern Whiteshell.
- Blue Lakes, Childs Lake, Singush Lake and Wellman Lake campgrounds in Duck Mountain Provincial Park are closed until at least June 2 due to road washouts.
- Bird Lake, Beresford Lake, Black Lake, Shoe Lake and Tulabi Falls campgrounds in Nopiming Provincial Park are closed until at least June 2 due to overland flooding and road washouts.
- St. Malo Provincial Park campground has a partial closure of some sites until at least June 2 due to overland flooding.Rivers Provincial Park campground has a partial closure of some sites in low-lying areas until at least June 2 due to overland flooding.
- Adam Lake Campground in Turtle Mountain Provincial Park has a partial closure of some sites in low-lying areas until at least May 30.
- Watchorn Provincial Park campground has a partial closure of sites in low-lying areas until at least May 30.
- Lake St. George Provincial Park campground is closed until further notice due to flooded access roads.
Campgrounds at Manipogo and Rainbow Beach provincial parks will reopen on May 27 as conditions have improved in these areas.
Services such as drinking water and washrooms may be limited or reduced in some areas as a result of late spring conditions, which are delaying the seasonal setup and operation of water lines. Campers are advised to plan accordingly for potential service reductions and pack adequate drinking water.
Closures may be extended if flooding and high water conditions continue. Reservation holders and seasonal campers will be contacted and their fees refunded if their campsite is affected by a closure. Campers should not pre-emptively cancel reservations before being notified of a site closure, otherwise cancellation policies will apply.
Manitoba Parks staff are closely monitoring this evolving situation and assessing conditions daily and continues to co-ordinate with Emergency Measures Organization (EMO) and Manitoba Hydro in its preparedness and response.
Updated details on closures and advisories due to flooding are available at manitobaparks.com.
All park visitors should check manitoba511.ca for road closures and potential detours before travelling to parks. Park visitors are reminded to obey road and trail closures and not attempt to drive through flooded areas or across damaged bridges.