Wabasca: A Hidden Gem in Alberta
Nestled in the boreal forest of northern Alberta, Wabasca is a small community that offers visitors a unique experience of natural beauty and cultural richness. From pristine lakes and rivers to traditional Indigenous festivals, Wabasca has something for everyone. In this article, we will explore the attractions, history, and culture of Wabasca.
Calling Lake Provincial Park
Located just 20 km north of Wabasca, Calling Lake Provincial Park is a popular destination for camping, fishing, and boating. The park features a sandy beach, hiking trails, and a playground for children. Visitors can also rent canoes, kayaks, and paddleboards to explore the lake.
Wabasca-Desmarais Heritage Centre
The Wabasca-Desmarais Heritage Centre showcases the history and culture of the local Indigenous communities. The centre features exhibits on traditional hunting and fishing practices, as well as displays of art and crafts. Visitors can also attend workshops on beading, drum-making, and other traditional skills.
Wabasca Sandhills Wildland Provincial Park
The Wabasca Sandhills Wildland Provincial Park is a unique ecosystem of sand dunes and jack pine forests. The park is home to a variety of wildlife, including black bears, moose, and wolves. Visitors can hike or bike on the trails, or go birdwatching in the wetlands.
Wabasca Lake is a large, clear lake that offers excellent fishing and boating opportunities. The lake is home to a variety of fish species, including walleye, northern pike, and lake trout. Visitors can also swim or relax on the sandy beaches.
The Wabasca Rodeo is an annual event that celebrates the western heritage of the community. The rodeo features bull riding, barrel racing, and other events, as well as live music and food vendors. The event takes place in August and attracts visitors from all over the region.
Wabasca was established in the early 1900s as a trading post for the fur trade. The community grew as a hub for the forestry and oil industries in the region. In 1983, Wabasca was officially incorporated as a village. The community has a strong Indigenous presence, with members of the Bigstone Cree Nation and the Driftpile First Nation living in the area.
Wabasca may be a small community, but it offers a wealth of natural and cultural attractions for visitors. From the sandy beaches of Calling Lake to the unique sand dunes of the Wabasca Sandhills, there is something for everyone to enjoy. The community's rich Indigenous history and traditions are also on display at the Wabasca-Desmarais Heritage Centre. Whether you are looking for outdoor adventure or cultural immersion, Wabasca is a hidden gem in Alberta.
- Alberta Parks. (n.d.). Calling Lake Provincial Park. https://www.albertaparks.ca/parks/northwest/calling-lake-pp/
- Explore Wabasca. (n.d.). Wabasca-Desmarais Heritage Centre. https://www.explorewabasca.com/heritage-centre
- Government of Alberta. (n.d.). Wabasca Sandhills Wildland Provincial Park. https://www.albertaparks.ca/parks/northwest/wabasca-sandhills-wpp/
- Wabasca-Desmarais. (n.d.). Wabasca Lake. https://www.wabascadesmarais.com/wabasca-lake
- Wabasca-Desmarais. (n.d.). Wabasca Rodeo. https://www.wabascadesmarais.com/wabasca-rodeo
- Wabasca-Desmarais. (n.d.). History. https://www.wabascadesmarais.com/history