Looking beyond the scenery

Easy access trailheads take riders to three very different experiences

by Gail Jansen

Hudson Bay lies in the centre of 400,000 acres of Provincial forest in a valley between the Porcupine and Pasquia Hills.  A very atypical Saskatchewan landscape that rises up 2,800 feet and features snowmobile trailheads that head out in all four directions from the centre of town.

In addition to the Province’s top groomed trail system comprised of 660 kilometres of trails, Hudson Bay also offers countless old logging roads and off trail opportunities to entertain all levels of rider.  With 11 warm-up shelters that offer comfort and warmth on those long cold rides, an abundance of scenery and countless wildlife viewing opportunities, you’ll soon see for yourself, why Hudson Bay is one of Saskatchewan’s top snowmobiling destinations.

Beyond the scenery

With an abundance of scenery in every direction, members of the Hudson Bay Trail Riders snowmobile club find it’s the unique details of each trail that makes each one special.

Heading north on the 150-kilometre North Trail loop, which includes the Bankside Lake in the Wildcat Hill Wilderness Park and the Fir River Canyon, riders have the chance to gain access to pristine territory that is rarely visited except by other riders. One of the most adventurous trails in terms of getting into the backcountry and getting away from civilization, it’s an isolated area, even in the summer months, which makes it the perfect place to view wildlife including:  moose, elk, deer, Woodland Caribou, wolves, coyotes, foxes and more. Be sure to take a tour around the shoreline of the lake where there is typically four feet of powder snow in mid winter, greater even than the normal snowfall in town.  It’s a bit of a climb to reach the Wildcat Hill Wilderness Park, but it’s one that’s well worth the effort.

Serving up shelter

The 130-kilometre ride southeast through the Porcupine Hills to the Moose Range Lodge near the Manitoba border, offers up several beautiful warm-up shelters, open meadows and old logging areas to play in, as well as the chance to fuel up and get a hot meal at the Moose Range Lodge.

Thanks to the efforts of the Hudson Bay Trail Riders and the Saskatchewan Trail Fund, many of the shelters on this ride are newly built. At a size of 12 by 20 feet, fully insulated with large windows, metal cladding and a small deck, they offer a safe and sturdy place to take shelter should the weather turn severe.

Do it yourself

Heading out west of Hudson Bay, scenery is just as abundant along this stretch of trail, which turns to head south for 75 kilometres. Offering a variety of options from open fields to bush lines, where this trail differs from many is the experience that awaits you at near the end at the Weekes Hotel.

Here riders can not only order a sirloin steak with all the fixings that go with it, they also have the opportunity to head to the steak pit and grill it for themselves, ensuring its perfection every time.

Super snow conditions, groomed trails and a perfectly grilled steak, offers rider the perfect combination for a perfect day.

Premier destination

In 2008, Premier Brad Wall joined riders at the Provincial Snowmobile Festival in Hudson Bay—the only one he’s taken part in—and organizers are hoping he’ll join them again in 2012.

Saskatchewan’s Premier Snowmobiling Festival, which brings in over 360 riders for a weekend of fun and frolic in the snow, is a rally that offers both its regular followers and first-timers the chance to win a bevy of prizes offered up from snowmobile manufacturers and other great sponsors.

While the trail of choice has yet to be finalized, (as organizers are working to ensure that routes don’t conflict with any potential logging in the area), registration forms are now available from the Town of Hudson Bay or through the Saskatchewan Snowmobiling Association website  where more information on the event can be found.

Related Articles

Everything a snowmobiler needs to know about snowmobiling Hudson Bay, Saskatchewan, including trail maps, local listings and more.
Hudson Bay, SK Trip planner: What you need to know before snowmobiling in Hudson Bay, SK

Trial maps, top snowmobile trails, club contacts and other useful information you can use before planning a snowmobile trip to Hudson Bay, SK

A few snowmobilers stop for a break in Hudson Bay, Saskatchewan.
Hudson Bay, SK Sledders across Saskatchewan say Hudson Bay is the best place to play

Rick Dolezsar, director of the Hudson Bay Trail Riders, highlights why they’re the reigning SnoRiders SledTown ShowDown provincial champions

Two tractors in front of a warm-up shelter.
Hudson Bay, SK Club Profile: Hudson Bay Trail Riders

The Hudson Bay Trail Riders are the reigning 2020 SnoRiders SledTown ShowDown Provincial Champions for Saskatchewan

by Kyle Born
View all Hudson Bay articles