Located on the escarpment in south-central Manitoba, Riding Mountain National Park has been recognized by UNESCO as a biosphere reserve, a 3000km green lung of parkland and boreal forest surrounded by prairie farmland. People come for the trails, they come for the wildlife (Riding Mountain is one of the best parks to encounter the great animals of the north), and they come for the cinnamon buns, which have no equal in the nation.
Length of Trip : 2-4 days
Like all National Parks, there is a nominal fee to enter the park. You are also required to get a fishing and backcountry permit. You can see the latest park fees, including camping and yurt prices in Wasagaming here.
Best time to go : Beautiful prairie flowers bloom over June/July, but summer and fall are both lovely.
Wheelchair friendly : Riding offers excellent wildlife opportunities from the vehicle. The yurt is also accessible.
Family friendly : Yes
Where to eat :
Don’t think of leaving Clear Lake without trying the cinnamon buns at the Whitehouse Bakery. They come in maple, cream cheese and regular varieties. Italian-themed T.R McKoys is the most popular restaurant in town, and for good reason. Click here for a full list of restaurants in Clear Lake.
Official Site :
Where to Stay :
The Wasagaming Campground offers a yurt that sleeps up to 4 adults. Forgoing lighting and electricity, it’s a rustic, fun alternative to camping. Alternatively, you can also stay in Riding’s new A-Frame oTENTik, a spacious blend of a tent and a cabin. Wasagaming, also known as Clear Lake, has resorts, cabins, hotels and inns.
Getting There :
Riding Mountain National Park is accessible by car from urban centres to the north and south. Highway #10 connects Brandon, to the south, with Wasagaming (the park’s Visitor Services Centre) and continues to Dauphin, 13 km beyond the northern border of the park. Highway #19 enters the park from the east through the scenic escarpment region. Dauphin and Brandon are the nearest commercial airports.
Note from Robin :
Get up close and personal with a bison by taking a dawn or dusk drive to Lake Audy. Bison are known to come right up to vehicles and use them as a salt lick! Keep your eyes open for deer, moose, coyotes and black bear, which are prolific in the region.
View from the Escarpment
Sunny day in Clear Lake
Clear Lake aka Wasagaming