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Flood damage costs reach $19M in Banff National Park

Roughly $19 million of damage was caused by the roaring floodwaters in Banff National Park, but Parks Canada still has work to do as it tries to restore flood-damaged areas west of Calgary.

An estimated $6M in repairs still needed

Parks Canada workers were thanked Friday morning at the Banff Cave and Basin for their hard work and long hours during the June flood. (CBC)

Government officials were in Banff Friday thanking Parks Canada staff and everyone else who has been helping with the flood cleanup since June. 

High-priority areas like roads and facilities are up and running.

Roughly $19 million of damage was caused by the roaring floodwaters, but Parks Canada still has some work to do as it tries to restore flood-damaged areas in Banff National Park.

The focus is now on the backcountry.

About $6 million in repairs are still needed, says park superintendent Dave McDonough.

"We lost, for example, 49 bridges and have managed to restore 20 so far. So we are on track to bring things back to where they were."

Banff Lake Louise Tourism president Julie Canning admits not as many visitors venture into the backcountry, but it's still vital for the areas to be restored.

"We know we have some of the best wilderness camping, some of the best backcountry experiences anywhere in the world," she said. "Getting those bridges restored will be critical to that experience."

All of the popular campgrounds are expected to be open this spring.