When the colours of autumn begin to peek through, there’s no better place to be than in Manitoba’s most accessible national park. Take a fall trip to Riding Mountain National Park and marvel as the landscape transforms from lush greens to golden yellows, deep reds, and toasty orange hues. Fall is truly one of the best times of the year to get lost in this Manitoba natural wonder. Here are 5 ways to have an incredible autumn adventure in Riding Mountain National Park.
Whether you’re an experienced hiker or a newbie trekker, Riding Mountain National Park has a trail suitable for all skill levels. The Onanole Trail provides a scenic route with very little incline, while the Ominik Marsh trail is an easygoing walk that ignites the senses as you listen to the sounds of the marsh and keep your eyes peeled for beavers. Once you’ve mastered these trails, it’s time to take your hike to the next level and head to Gorge Creek Trail. This moderate/difficult hike provides incredible views of the Canadian Shield and Boreal Forest, showing off the brilliant colours of the fall foliage of the park.
While roughing it may appeal to some, Riding Mountain National Park offers an easier way to experience the great outdoors. Parks Canada oTENTiks offer the best of both worlds: tent camping (without actually needing to pitch a tent) with creature comforts of home. These structures provide 3 bunk beds (with mattresses), electric heat, USB chargers, and wood burning stoves. There are also heated bathrooms and showers nearby!
Wander the town
In between traversing the boardwalks and hiking the trails, take some time in the town of Wasagaming and wander the adorable little shops that are just starting to pack away their wares for the winter months. The charming town has a myriad of restaurants, lake-front views, and a log cabin Visitor Centre with historical interpretation of the region.
You’ll also want to wander (ie, drive) to the edge of the Park’s East entrance to see the historic East Gate. Constructed in the 1930’s, the gate’s design is typical of rustic Canadiana style and makes for some great photo ops.
One of the most undeniable draws to Riding Mountain National Park is of course the wildlife viewing opportunities. A morning drive to the Lake Audy Bison Enclosure will often include sightings of moose, elk (especially during the fall rutting season), and black bears along the way. Once you arrive at the enclosure, drive along the road and see bison on every side of your car. Continue to drive through the park and keep your eyes peeled for eagles, lynx, white-tailed deer, and more!