Landowner Rights & Trail User Responsibilities

The Waskahegan Trail is a unique resource that exists only because of the generosity of landowners. Before you set foot on the trail, know the landowner rights and the trail user responsibilities.

Ice and Snow: Whitemud Park to Hawrelak Park

Eight people came out to hike along the North Saskatchewan River into Hawrelak Park. We started from the parking lot at Whitemud Park in softly falling snow. Crossing the Quesnel bridge into Laurier Park, we continued on past joggers, dogs, and fat-bike riders.

We reached Hawrelak Park, where the Silver Skate Festival has been on for the past week.

The ice castle looked well preserved in spite of the swings in weather.

The snow sculptures where amazing as always, like this shaggy rabbit.

A new attraction this year was the helicopter. For $80 per person, you and up to two friends could have a lot of fun flying over the city and getting some spectacular views.

On the walk back to Whitemud, we followed the south bank. The sun broke through the clouds, warming up the day.

There’s a new development on these trails—the city has installed some wide lookouts on the trail. In this photo, the house you see in the clearing across the river is Yorath House, the historical residence situated next to the Edmonton Rowing Club.

One of the expansive new lookouts on the bank of the North Saskatchewan

Thanks to Lee for leading this hike. You can find more photos on Flickr.

Forecast the weather with this new tool

Would you like to be better at forecasting the weather for your hiking, picnics, and other outdoor pursuits? So would we!

That’s why we added a new web page called “Forecasting the Weather”. It’s based on Waskahegan member Terry Elrod’s useful and easy-to-use article of the key weather data sites and how to use them. And by weather, we’re talking temperatures, precipitation, air quality—and for the Edmonton region—mosquitos.

Terry’s article has been available on the website for a year, but now the information has a permanent web page. The page includes links to weather data sites that detail current conditions and trends in the vicinity of the Waskahegan Trail. There are also links and commentary on long-range forecasts, five-day forecasts, and real time weather information.

Even Alberta’s weather phone numbers are clickable. That means you can download the web page to your smartphone and call the weather number for Camrose with a single tap—even when you have no internet!

There are two places where can you find the link to this web page from the Home page. Look in the right sidebar under “Resources” or on the navigation submenu under “Hiking”. Or you can always go the search box at the top and type “forecasting the weather”.

Devon Trail Hike Starts the New Year

Devon’s ravine trails was our first hike of 2020. Fifteen people came out for this established winter favourite. Starting at the parking lot at the river’s edge outside the Lion’s Campground, we walked east along the North Saskatchewan and turned into the ravine. The long walk has steep but manageable climbs. Normally we never see other hikers when we come out here, but this time we met up with two large groups plus a few individuals. Was it New Year’s resolutions to be more active in 2020? Or a desire to work off some of that eating and sitting around over the Christmas break? Probably both.

The trail through the ravine ends at the top on the Pileated Woodpecker Trail. It’s been a few years since we’ve seen a woodpecker here, but the stands of old trees obviously make a perfect home.

Exiting the trail, we walked through the town’s park system until we got to the Dale Fisher Arena, our usual lunch spot. With the hockey tournament going on, it was too crowded to stay inside. Fortunately, it was warming up considerably, and we discovered the bleachers overlooking the skating rink on the west side of the building. It was ideal for our large group.

We resumed our hike on the Trans Canada Trail through the woods above the river. It was a little challenging only because the trail had been groomed for cross country skiing, and we were trying to avoid stepping on the tracks. The hike finished at the river’s edge, where the parking lot was now very crowded.

Thanks to Lee for scouting the hike, and the town of Devon for maintaining such an inviting trail system.

You can find more photos on Flickr.