For 40 years, Assiniboine Forest has officially been a municipal nature park, and with summer finally upon us it’s the perfect time to explore this area that was once slatted for residential development.
Back in 1920, the area that is now known to us as Assiniboine Forest was meant to become a developed area with roads, houses, and everything comes with setting up a community.
At the time it was located in the Town of Tuxedo and the appropriate demolition was underway, including necessary clearing for road construction.
Unfortunately with the stock market crash of 1929, and the depression that followed, construction came to a complete stop. Years passed and local residents began using the space for recreational activities, with small areas being used as landfill sites.
In the 1960s, city councillor Bernie Wolfe went against the Town of Tuxedo residents in an effort to protect the forest and wildlife within the area.
In 1971, the Town of Tuxedo officially joined the City of Winnipeg and although there was still competition to renew construction plans, area residents and the Assiniboine Park Centennial Committee ensured Assiniboine Forest became a preserved Municipal Nature Park in1973.
Whether you choose to walk, hike, or bike through the forest, there is lots to see and many paths to choose from. Keep an open eye for white-tailed deer, rabbits, raccoons and several species of birds, as you never know what might be walking right along side you.
The forest has about 10 different paths made up of either limestone, woodchip or paved cement and, depending on what routes you decide to explore, you can fill an entire afternoon. The highlight for many is the Eve Werier Memorial Pond, located close to the heart of the forest. The beautiful atmosphere will encourage anyone who comes by to enjoy an extra moment or two soaking up the scenery of wildlife and nature.
If you would like to know more about the Assiniboine Forest, its wildlife, plants and history, the City of Winnipeg hosts interpretive hikes for small or large groups. For complete details and booking information, call 311.
Travis Mitchell is a community correspondent for Charleswood. Comments and story ideas can be sent to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.