A couple sit in their camp chairs fishing off at dock at Michell Pond in lower Heritage Ranch
May 31

International Trails Day – (Part 2)

Did you know list about the trail system in Central Alberta


  • The largest and best-known trail system in central Alberta, at a total of 133 km (excluding mountain bike and equestrian trails) is in the City of Red Deer, much of which is part of Waskasoo Park.
  • There are 85 km paved and the remainder 45 km is natural (mulch or shale). This does not include the trails along arterial or collector roads.
  • The Great Trail (TransCanada Trail) Pavilion in Red Deer was erected and dedicated in 2005 at Bower Ponds near the Cronquist House.
  • An 8 km trail part of the Great Trail connects Lacombe and Blackfalds and winds through the quiet rural countryside. It also passes a 115-year-old research station built in 1907, one of Canada's oldest.
  • The Abbey Centre in Blackfalds has the only indoor section of The Great Trail, giving people a much-deserved place to rest and get some shelter from the elements.
  • Gaetz Lakes Sanctuary located behind Kerry Wood Nature Centre is Alberta’s first Federal Migratory Bird Sanctuary. It is important to note that dogs, bikers, and joggers are not allowed in the area.
  • If you are seeking a place to have a weenie-roast, Red Deer has several parks located along the trails that have fire-pits and picnic shelters for public use.
  • Heritage Ranch has trails not only for pedestrian use but for horses as well.
  • Red Deer has two off-leash parks, one of them is located at Three Mile Bend, when travelling along the trails please be aware of dogs off-leash.
  • There are presently 3 stocked fishing ponds throughout the trails system that offer both summer and winter fishing opportunities (Bower Ponds, Mitchell Pond and Three Mile Bend Pond).
  • All of Red Deer’s boat launches to access the Red Deer River are located along the trails, except for the one at Fort Normandeau.
  • Red Deer College is home to a 500-metre barrier-free paved trail, as well as offers more informal trails throughout their natural areas.
  • Medicine River Wildlife Centre in Red Deer County, has beautiful nature trails that lead to a 75-acre wetland, teeming with waterfowl and birds, remember to bring your binoculars!
  • Sylvan Lake’s waterfront promenade offers 1.6 km of well-lit trail, passes along beach areas, landscaped gardens, flowers and trees, Centennial Park, shops and attractions.
  • Innisfail’s trail system offers 20 km of paved and natural trails throughout the entire town. Centennial Park's Napoleon Lake loop offers bird watching platforms on either side of the lake.
  • Varying topography can be found on trails in and around the Town of Stettler. Get an up-close and personal look at the Canadian Badlands along the Red Deer River, on a hike along close by Willow Canyon or in Big Knife Provincial Park.

Do you have any fun or interesting facts about the trails in your area to share? @TourismRedDeer would love to hear about them. Keep enjoying and exploring Red Deer’s Backyard and join us as we #getoutofthegrey and start to #experiencethecolours of central Alberta.

READ International Trails Day – June 5 (Part 1) HERE

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