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Bull Pen

HWY 16 and Snarling Rd, Jasper National Park, Alberta, T0E, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1988/09/01

View of the Bull Pen, showing its horizontal log construction, 1987.; Parcs Canada / Parks Canada, Merna Foster, 1987
General view
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Other Name(s)

Bull Pen
National Training Centre, Bull Pen
Centre de formation national, Enclos des taureaux
Palisades Ranch
Ranch Palisades

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/08/23

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

One of a complex of twelve buildings known as the National Training Centre, the Bull Pen is a horizontal, one-storey frame building with a gable roof, constructed with a rustic vocabulary of materials that includes horizontal logs and shingles. The complex is isolated and self-contained around a large grassed area. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

The Bull Pen is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental value.

Historical Value
The Bull Pen and its associated complex are associated with the early development of Jasper National Park of Canada. The National Training Centre was originally part of a homestead known as the Palisades Ranch. The Palisades Ranch had been established by Lewis Swift, a personality who figured prominently in the history of the area. The Palisades Ranch was a trail-related tourist industry and, as such, contributed to the development and use of Jasper Park. It remained privately owned until 1962 when the National Parks Branch purchased it. It began operation as a training center for park employees in 1964.

Architectural Value
The Bull Penn is a good example of a functional building type constructed in a rustic aesthetic. Its well-executed vocabulary of building materials, consisting of horizontal logs and shingles, conforms with the architectural character of Canada’s National Parks.

Environmental Value
As a significant building within the National Training Centre (formerly the Palisades Ranch), the Bull Pen is compatible in size, design and placement with the character of the complex. Although the complex is self-contained and not visible from the highway, the Bull Pen, by virtue of the fact that it is part of the National Training Centre, is known to the communities of Jasper and Hinton.

Kate MacFarlane, National Training Centre (former Palisades Ranch), Jasper National Park, Alberta, Federal Heritage Building Report, 87-010; National Training Centre (former Palisades Ranch) Jasper National Park, Alberta, Heritage Character Statement, 87-010.

Character-Defining Elements

The character-defining elements of the Bull Pen should be respected.

Its functional design and rustic vocabulary of materials, for example:
- its simple massing, consisting of a one-storey frame building with a gable roof;
- its horizontal log construction;
- its door and window arrangement;
- the choice of materials, including horizontal logs, shakes and shingles, which speak to the rustic character of the building.

The manner in which the Bull Pen is compatible with its setting, as evidenced by:
- its scale, its functional appearance and rustic materials, all of which are sympathetic with the other buildings in the complex.




Recognition Authority

Government of Canada

Recognition Statute

Treasury Board Heritage Buildings Policy

Recognition Type

Recognized Federal Heritage Building

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1962/01/01 to 1962/01/01
1964/01/01 to 1964/01/01

Theme - Category and Type

Function - Category and Type



Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Indigenous Affairs and Cultural Heritage Directorate Documentation Centre 3rd Floor, room 366 30 Victoria Street Gatineau, Québec J8X 0B3

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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General view

Warden House

One of twelve buildings in a complex known as the National Training Centre, the Warden House is a two-storey building constructed with a rustic vocabulary of materials that…


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