WATC – WILDERNESS AUTHORIZATION TO CARRY – PROOF OF PROFICIENCY
Using a Firearm for Wilderness Protection
Typically, the firearms program only allows firearms allowed for wilderness protection are non-restricted rifles and shotguns. The following individuals, provided they are Canadian residents and have a license that allows them to possess restricted firearms ( RPAL ), may be authorized to carry a handgun or restricted long gun for wilderness protection:
licensed professional trappers, and
individuals who need protection from wild animals while working at their lawful occupation, most often in a remote wilderness location.
Licence and Registration Requirements
Under the Firearms Act, all firearm owners and users require a firearms license, and all restricted or prohibited firearms must be registered*. When in possession of a firearm, an individual must be able to produce a firearms license for inspection when asked by a peace officer. If it is a restricted or prohibited firearm, they must also have the associated registration certificate.
Carrying Handguns and Restricted Long Guns
To be authorized to carry a handgun or restricted long gun for a lawful occupational purpose, such as trapping or working in a wilderness area, an individual must be a Canadian resident, have a firearms license with restricted privileges and obtain an Authorization to Carry (ATC) permit from the CFP. To apply for an ATC permit, form RCMP 5491, Application for Authorization to Carry Restricted Firearms and Prohibited Handguns, must be submitted. There is a non-refundable fee of $40 that must be paid to the CFP to apply for an ATC.
For more information, contact the CFP.
Students must provide the following information at time of registration:
Part 1: APPLICANT INFORMATION
Given Name(s): ________________________________________________________________
Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL): __________________________________________
Part 2: FIREARM INFORMATION AND PROOF OF PROFICIENCY EXAM
Firearm Registration Certificate 1: _______________________________________________
Firearm Identification Number (FIN): _______________________________________________
Type of Ammunition Used: _______________________________________________________
• The firearm used during the POP must be the same firearm the applicant intends to use for
• An applicant can only apply for a maximum of two firearms to be listed on their Authorization to
Carry (ATC) and a POP must be completed for each firearm.
• The minimum calibre accepted for wilderness protection is .357 Magnum.
• The type of ammunition used during the POP must have a similar muzzle velocity, caliber and
bullet weight as the ammunition that the applicant intends to use for wilderness protection.
• Holsters must be designed to be worn on a belt around the waist, outside of clothing and have at
least one strap with a snap closure that retains the firearm securely in the holster.
• The holster must be designed to completely cover the trigger.
• A holster and a holster retention device must be used during the POP.
• Shoulder and cross-draw holsters are not permitted.
• The applicant must shoot in both standing and kneeling positions for each distance (5, 10 and 15
• For each firing position at each distance, the applicant must discharge six (6) rounds, unsupported,
within 20 seconds, in one continuous motion.
• The administrator must indicate the total number of hits for each shooting position and distance.
A hit is awarded when a round lands on the designated scoring area of the target. The designated
scoring area is defined as being a circle with a radius of 9 inches or 23 cm.
• The applicant must achieve 15 hits for every 18 rounds fired for each shooting position.
• If an applicant fails to achieve the minimum pass mark, the applicant must be retested for the
failed shooting position at all three distances.
• An applicant can only attempt a maximum of two retests for each shooting distance.
• If an applicant fails to achieve the minimum pass mark after three attempts for any distance, the
applicant can not attempt to do the POP assessment until after a minimum of 30 days have passed.
• The administrator must submit all POP assessment results – pass or fail – to the Chief Firearms
Officer of their jurisdiction.