Take a Chance on Adventure in Saskatchewan

The best part about living in Regina is seeing it fade away in your rear-view mirror— not that I’m against some of the city’s finer points. I like the greasy pub food, half-decent beer selection and gritty rock concerts, but there’s a reason to leave it behind now and then. Feel small and ‘get lost’ in the wild. Go see how huge Saskatchewan really is.

Limestone crevices and steep river canyons. Badlands and buttes. Snake orgies and feral trout streams. This is just the tip of what you can find if you know where to look. And all of the information is out there.

The ease of access between cities and unincorporated wilderness is one of Saskatchewan’s greatest advantages. You can wake up in a hammock next to a stream, miles away from any cell service, then find yourself chowing down on a deep-dish pizza by suppertime. But if you want to enjoy what the province has to offer, you’ve got to be willing to take a risk and fly by the seat of your pants sometimes.

Challenge yourself to explore a new corner of the province. If you’re the kind of person who would die of boredom from a long highway drive or a night without Facebook, then maybe it won’t work out. Some imagination is needed to see the forest for more than just the trees. But if you know how to work to have fun, see things differently and take the good with the bad, you’ll do just fine.

The key to getting out is simple: bring like-minded friends that share your desire for adventure. Find people who know how to dance out of boredom and laugh at any ‘World’s Biggest’ roadside attraction.

But now you have to convince your friends that the trip is worthwhile.

Whether going off-grid or into a new park outside of your usual go-to destination, here’s what you can find on your adventure: friendly people, quaint villages, new restaurants, time to think, peace and quiet… And that’s only before you’ve entered the forests.

Camping in remote back-country, no story or picture can do it justice until you experience it for yourself. The stars mirroring a perfect reflection of the night sky over a calm lake. The sound of an animal trudging its way through the forest only steps away from your tent. The tug on your fishing line as silver flashes light up the bottom of the riverbed… Aside from the mosquitoes, these are the things that make the world’s colour shine brighter and even the food taste better.

There is a reason the people who choose to stay and live in Saskatchewan do so with a sense of pride. Listen and they will speak of a mysterious connection to the land— something is alive in the prairies which you can’t find anywhere else. Those who desperately want to leave might see this person as brain-washed, and maybe rightly so. But I argue that the person who chooses to stay is freer than the other.

Take the time to read and learn about what this province has to offer. With an open mind and the right group of friends, there’s always adventure at your doorstep.

. Andy Goodson .


 

Andy Goodson is the author of the outdoor adventure blog, The Saskatchewan Border, featuring stories and photography of his friends’ trips into the back-country of Saskatchewan and western Manitoba. 

3 thoughts on “Take a Chance on Adventure in Saskatchewan

  1. Andy: I enjoy your Saskatchewan Border blog. Discovering it was nicely concurrent with my own expeditions this summer as part of re-fueling my art practice. Love your photos.

    While I appreciate the spirit and intent of this article, I have to take issue with your assessment of Regina, which seems to be viewed from a somewhat collegiate, lens. I encourage you to take the same approach to experiencing the city as you do with the parklands. Short of sleeping outdoors, that is. Don’t do that. I recommend the book “Regina’s Secret Spaces” (U of R Press, Beug, Campbell, Mah, ed.) as an alternate lens.

    Having worked for a legal land surveyor, I have had the privilege of experiencing pockets of our province that most people never see. This summer I revisited some of those locales with camera in tow. Your blog and the Saskatchewan Scenery Facebook page are drawing long-overdue attention to the beauty of our land. Well done. Avanti!

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    1. Hey Shawn, glad you’ve found The Saskatchewan Border and that you share in our appreciation for the outdoors. If we’re inspiring anyone to take a second look at what our province has to offer, then I think we’ve done our job.

      I see what you’re saying, and now that I look at it, I can see how it might give the impression I don’t find fulfillment in Regina. However, that’s not true. I think a little self-deprecation is healthy (and maybe even ingrained in the Saskatchewan-spirit), but make no mistake, there are great things to find no matter where you live. Regina is no exception. I mean, Wascana Park, in itself, is a geographic anomaly that only exists because we humans wanted a lake and a park — that amazes me.

      What I’m trying to get across in this article is that the vastness of Saskatchewan enhances the experience of its cities. Getting out and seeing the diverse geography while building an understanding of the land’s natural history fills in the information gaps. After that, one can see Wascana for more than a spring run-off creek. Each tree that was hand-planted makes for a beautiful tribute to our resilience – the idea that if we can’t find something, we make it. And if you need a wilderness experience, you sure as hell don’t have to drive to the mountains!

      Cheers,

      Andy

      Like

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