Little Smokey Introduction
Located between Hinton and Jasper National Park along the front ranges of the Rockies, the Little Smoky area represents a critical portion of Alberta’s Upper and Lower Foothills Natural subregion. In Alberta, the Foothills are only 2% protected. The Little Smoky has long been recognized as provincially significant as it supports many ESA’s, including the Donald Creek drainage, Middle Berland River, and the Little Smoky Caribou range.
Unique wildlife resource potential exists for natural heritage appreciation in the region. The area supports the Little Smoky caribou herd that has been given the provincial status of “at immediate risk of extirpation” as well as “threatened” under the both the provincial Alberta Wildlife Act and the Federal Species at Risk Act. These species as well as the Foothills region are at risk from the lack of designated protection and cumulative impacts of industrial activity and recreational disturbance.
AWA's Vision for Little Smoky
- Defer new industrial development within the habitat range of the Little Smoky caribou population. Research must be undertaken prior to exploration to determine herd viability, location of key habitats and parameters of present and historic caribou range.
- Officially protect the caribou herd range.
- Attain designated protection for the Solomon Valley and Wildhay River area located adjacent to the Rock Lake-Solomon Creek Wildland Park.
Existing protected areas include:
- Pinto Creek Canyon Natural Area
- Wildhay Glacial Cascades Natural area
- Rock Lake- Solomon Creek Wildland Provincial Park
- William A. Switzer Provincial Park