Canmore-area bear closure lifted as buffaloberries recede

A popular area for walking and biking area near Canmore, Alta., that had been off-limits to the public since July due to bear activity has been reopened.

'Just be bear aware. There are still bears in the valley,' says AEP official

Jay Honeyman, a human wildlife conflict biologist with Alberta Environment and Parks, takes down yellow tape marking the closure. (Dave Gilson/CBC)

A bear-related area closure around Quarry Lake and Grassi Lakes near Canmore, Alta., was lifted Friday morning.

The closure had been in place since the end of July because of the amount of buffaloberry and bear activity within the closed area.

"We had a lot of bears feeding on buffaloberry. A lot of those buffaloberry were trailside and that was resulting in a lot of interactions with bikers, joggers, dog-walkers," explained Jay Honeyman, human wildlife conflict biologist with Alberta Environment and Parks.

A grizzly bear eats buffaloberries in this handout photo from Parks Canada. (Alex Taylor/Parks Canada)

"For the most part, the berries have dropped, and the bears are starting to move out of this area, so we're opening it up again," Honeyman said.

Officials say that anyone travelling through the area should still take precautions.

Alberta Environment and Parks advises people to carry bear spray, travel in groups, make lots of noise and keep their dogs on a leash.

"Just be bear aware. There are still bears in the valley," he said.

Other area closures remain in effect. For up to date information, check the government's website

The area marked in yellow is still under a bear warning. (Dave Gilson/CBC)