Exploring Saskatchewan from the front seat of your RV will open opportunities for discovery that many may not have even considered. Uncover dinosaur digs, archaeological sites, heritage attractions, museums, unique communities and wide open spaces with lots of room to breathe.
Bordering Montana and North Dakota to the north is the prairie province of Saskatchewan (pronounced sask-at-che-wan), situated almost in the middle of Canada and sometimes overshadowed by its sister provinces to the west and east. However, once discovered, Saskatchewan becomes memorable.
Experiencing some type of outdoor adventure is almost impossible to avoid because of the thousands of beautiful lakes, open ranges, and rugged wilderness with prospects for fishing, hunting, golfing, canoeing and kayaking, cycling, wildlife viewing or just exploring.
Six thousand years ago, the Opimikaw Creek Valley was home to early First Nations people and archeological digs have found signs of bow and arrow technology, a bison jump and traps, and the construction of a medicine wheel.
Wanuskewin is the longest running archeological dig in Canada where treasures continue to be unearthed. The Wanuskewin Heritage Park Interpretive Centre should definitely be a planned stop so everyone can enjoy the Aboriginal artwork. It includes paintings and inspiring ceremonial pieces that tell a story about the tradition of the First Nations and Metis people. It’s only five minutes from the city of Saskatoon and easy to access.
Let’s go fresh water fishing!
With almost a third of the province covered in water, this is where everyone will want to come to catch some of the most common species of fish such as the northern pike, yellow perch, walleye or some rainbow or brook trout. This is a world-class fishing destination with many fishing lodges and parks to choose from so throw your rod into the RV.
Where you can fish, you can paddle and avid canoeist and kayakers will appreciate the boundless opportunities for paddling the variety of lakes and extensive rivers throughout the province. Both beginners and experienced paddlers will enjoy the documented canoe routes that allow paddlers to enjoy the wilderness and views of waterfalls, limestone cliffs and imposing canyons.
Scouting for birds?
Then you probably will want to visit the Last Mountain Lake National Wildlife Area, the oldest bird sanctuary in North America, where over 280 species migrate to each year. Want to see a whooping crane? Then this is the place to be.
Unfortunately, there’s limited wheelchair access but there are modern washrooms, a picnic area and tourist information available for planning a self-guided tour.
Saddle up for a cattle drive
If the Old West intrigues, then visit Grasslands National Park and sign up with a local rancher for an experience that resembles days from the past. Step out of your RV for a couple of nights and after a hearty meal cooked from the chuck wagon, sleep on a bedroll under a sky filled with stars above you.
Take a self-guided Ecotour scenic drive and discover the spectacular views of the coulees, buttes and Frenchman River Valley. Watch for the prairie dog colonies and the bison that roam free within the park while enjoying the flora that makes up the grasslands. The historical homesteads and ranching sites will take you back in time to an era that will never be forgotten.
A visit to Saskatchewan wouldn’t be compete without a visit to Fort Walsh, a Canadian National Historical Site, built to stop the whiskey trade and protect the border with the United States. Rebuilt in the 1940’s it’s now where the beautiful horses bred for the Royal Canadian Mountain Police Musical Ride. Take a tour of the buildings and the old town site, cemetery and the whiskey trading post.
If you haven’t heard of the “World Famous Horsehair Dance Floor,” then you have to visit Manitou Beach. The dance floor was built with coils of horse tail hair under a maple floor and sways when the dancers are on it.
This is where the magic happens. The waters of Little Lake Manitou offer therapeutic healing properties to the skin and body and because of its mineral content allows swimmers to float unhampered. Just lay back and float and enjoy the sensation.
The cities of Saskatchewan
One of the largest cities is Saskatoon, a place to stock up on supplies, enjoy a coffee at one of the sidewalk cafes, stroll through a local park, visit a museum, go shopping or enjoy a round of golf. There’s not much that isn’t available in Saskatoon.
It’s the capital so that makes it special itself but it’s also home to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Academy making it even more of an attraction. Regina has it all – shops, museums, art galleries, nightlife, and upscale dining.
The first impression of Saskatchewan is wide open prairies, and a big expansive sky and that’s probably a good image of the province but its more than that. There’s history, culture, beauty and adventure to be found in Canada’s Province of Saskatchewan so bring your RV for a rare road trip this summer.
- Fishing Regulations in Saskatchewan: www.environment.gov.sk.ca/licences
- Wanuskewin: wanuskewin.com/our-story/archaeological
- Last Mountain Lake National Wildlife Area: click here.
- Canoe Saskatchewan: canoesaskatchewan.rkc.ca
- Grasslands National Park: www.pc.gc.ca/eng/pn-np/sk/grasslands/visit.aspx
- Manitou: watrousmanitou.com