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Updated: 11th July 2018 09:15

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Lake Minnewanka trails, campgrounds closed after bear damages tent

Parks Canada has closed the Minnewanka area of Banff National Park after a bear damaged an unoccupied tent at a backcountry campground.

Trespassers could face fines up to $25K

Lake Minnewanka in Banff National Park has been closed after a bear damaged an unoccupied tent at a backcountry campsite. (fRI Research)

Parks Canada has closed the Minnewanka area of Banff National Park after a bear damaged an unoccupied tent at a backcountry campground.

The closure, announced Tuesday, covers the Minnewanka Lakeshore trail and area from Stewart Canyon to the boundary of Banff National Park, including Aylmer Pass Trail. 

All six campgrounds in the area are closed.

The notice did not specify what kind of bear damaged the tent. 

The region is expected to reopen Aug. 2, but until then, trespassers can face a fine of up to $25,000.

The area around Lake Minnewanka in Banff National Park has been closed after a bear damaged an unoccupied tent. (Parks Canada)

Parks Canada had issued seasonal trail restrictions for the region just three days earlier, saying all hiking parties had to travel in minimum groups of four, carry bear spray, and not bring dogs or bicycles on the trails.

In June, a hiker had a close call with a mother grizzly and her cub on the eastern side of the lake's shoreline trail.

He used bear spray on the grizzly when she charged and was knocked to the ground and received a small bite before the bear took off. 

Parks Canada has said hikers should make plenty of noise while on the trails and carry bear spray where it is easily accessible. 

A full list of closures and other important bulletins is available on Parks Canada's website.

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