Crossing Canada: To Do

While researching for the past two days, I managed to find a few spectacular things that we plan to do while making our trek across the country. Surely we will be taken off course somewhere along the way (we like to be easily distracted), and will visit additional sites.

Admittedly, I was disappointed to find that the majority of historical Ukrainian and Doukhobor sites are far from the Trans-Canada, usually way north.

I did make a tour of Ukrainian history in northern Alberta which included visiting some amazing, tiny, isolated churches – and the giant sausage I mentioned in my previous post.

I will do a ‘Ukrainian History’ write up when I (finally) go through my photo files.

Here is our partial cross-Canada tour list:


Camp X

Camp X

Aerial of Camp X. Photo source;

A WWII secret training site. Ian Fleming, the agent that created James Bond, was trained here.

Camp 30

POW Camp 30

Camp 30, former Nazi P.O.W camp. Image source picsnapper@Flickr

A WWII P.O.W camp that once housed Nazi criminals. It was the only one in the world in 1941.

Serpent Mounds

Aerial Serpent Mounds

Aerial of Serpent Mounds. Photo: Wiki commons.

The only known effigy mound in Canada. A sacred place estimated to have been built up between 50 BCE and 300 CE.


Riel House

Riel House

Riel House. Photo courtesy of:

The Riel family, along with Louis, lived here for a few years. After his execution, visitation was held here. Due to some heavy cuts to the Parks Canada budget, the Riel House has faced closure. It will be interesting to see what is there when we arrive.

Fort Garry

English: Upper Fort Garry, north gate.

Fort Garry. Photo: Wiki Commons.

Established in 1822 by the Hudson Bay Company, Fort Garry served as a WWI internment site for Austro-Hungarians (primarily of Ukrainian decent). Nearby are Fort Rouge (1738) and Fort Gibraltar (1807).

Camp Hughes

Grenade Pit Camp Hughes

Grenade pit at Camp Hughes. Photo source;

Used for training in both world wars, Camp Hughes features one of the only WWI era trench systems remaining in the world.

Fort La Reine

Paul House Fort La Riene

The Paul House at Fort La Reine. Image courtesy of

Located in Portage La Prairie, Fort La Reine (1738) was an important centre for Canadian exploration. Many expeditions that would later lead to the development and formation of what is now known as Canada, started here.


Ghost Town Trail

Ghost Town Trail Saskatchewan

The ghost town trail in Saskatchewan. Photo from Wikipedia.

Also known as the ‘Red Coat Trail‘, along this forgotten southern Saskatchewan highway sit 32 different decaying, abandoned ghost towns.

Great Sandhills

Great Sandhills

The Great Sandhills. Photo: Tourism Saskatchewan/Douglas E. Walker

One of two desert like regions in Saskatchewan, the Great Sandhills are the largest set of active sand dunes in Canada.

Gray Burial Site

Archaeological studies have shown that this place was used as a traditional burial ground by a small band of bison hunters who inhabited the region between 3500 and 1000 BC.


Lougheed House

Lougheed House

Lougheed house, Calgary. Photo courtesy of

A sandstone prairie mansion build by one of Calgary’s most influential families, the Lougheeds, in 1891. Many Royals were entertained behind the mansion gates.

Castle Mountain

Castle Mountain

Memorial at Castle Mountain. Photo: Wiki commons.

Castle Mountain Internment Camp was known to be the harshest of its time. Ukrainian interns of WWI were placed here in 1914, by the hundreds, and put to work building what is now known as Banff National Park.

These are just ideas of course – we are likely to be taken way off track at some point!

You can follow along on our tour via Twitter, either from the links to the right, or by joining me @habitualrunaway. I plan to make the occasional post or two when the opportunity arises, but I like to get caught up in the moment, as you know, so who knows what will happen!

Canada, here we come!

6 responses to “Crossing Canada: To Do

  1. Sounds like a great trip! Can;t wait to see pics and read the posts! I’m in the planning / packing stage for my annual trip, too. I leave in 8 days!!


  2. Pingback: Abandoned Churches | Black and White·

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