Red Deer’s myriad trails offer something for everyone.
They’re perfect for some exercise away from the hustle and bustle or to try forest bathing, a stressreducing experience based on connecting with nature and surrounding yourself with natural energy.
Be sure to make a trail walk part of your staycation experience.
Waskasoo Park Trail System
The Waskasoo Park Trail System is a real Red Deer treasure that includes a number of smaller trail systems within its boundaries. Bordering the Red Deer River and running throughout the city, the park has about 100 kilometres of easily accessible paved and unpaved walking, biking, hiking and equestrian trails, which connects users to breath-taking green areas and park attractions. The Waskasoo trail system encompasses Heritage Ranch, McKenzie Trails, Bower Ponds, Kerry Wood Nature Center and Gaetz Wildlife Sanctuary.
McKenzie Trails Recreation Area
A natural oasis in north east Red Deer, McKenzie Trails was once the site of a gravel pit, a dump and a sawmill. This riverside park is a reclamation success and now features some of the oldest trees in Waskasoo Park and paved paths along a lake where Canada Geese nest. The site offers picnic shelters, a playground and a canoe launch on the Red Deer River.
Gaetz Lake Sanctuary
The Gaetz Lakes Sanctuary, originally protected in 1924, is Alberta’s first and oldest federal migratory bird sanctuary, one of only four in Alberta. The sanctuary encompasses 300 acres and includes five kilometers of walking trails. This wildlife refuge in the middle of the city includes forests, grasslands and wetlands and is home to dozens of birds and wildlife species.
Heritage Ranch is the focal point of a trail system that provides both summer and winter recreational opportunities. Paved and gravel trails weave through 217 acres of wild parkland, for walking and biking in the summer months and cross-country skiing in the winter. Heritage Ranch also offers the opportunity for trail and carriage rides and a picnic shelter.
Located in the west end of the city, Maskepetoon Park Trail has more than three kilometres of interpretive trails nestled along the Red Deer River. The site was originally an undisturbed river valley and is now a dedicated pollinator park. Enjoy strolling along the paths and trails that wind through the forest and marshland.
Bower Ponds a beautiful park full of attractions and a variety of recreational opportunities. The park includes a playground overlooking the Red Deer River, a serenity garden and a natural amphitheatre with a covered stage. Two fountains keep the central pond healthy and refreshed during the summer months and offer a fun element for boaters to row under. The more than 10 kilometres of trails also connect to Heritage Ranch, Mckenzie Trails and Three Mile Bend trail systems.