Saskatchewan sledders vouch for Hudson Bay

A consistent favourite in the Rider’s Choice Awards and SledTown ShowDown contest, Hudson Bay has many fans

by Danielle Cameron

two snowmobilers on a trail
Get together with your favourite sledding buddies and enjoy the Hudson Bay trails together. Photo courtesy Richard Dolezsar

With enticing hills and forest terrain, convenient warm-up shelters and immaculate grooming, Hudson Bay has thoroughly earned its reputation as one of Saskatchewan’s top sledding zones. You can spend days riding around this vast playground without getting bored, and it receives an average annual snowfall of 1.8 metres (6 feet) per winter. The best time to sled here is from late November to late March.

The local club, the Hudson Bay Trail Riders, has been in place since 1989. Its members work hard to keep the 680 kilometres of groomed snowmobile trails and 12 updated warm-up shelters in top shape.

To access some of the most popular trails in the vicinity, start your journey at the parking lot of the local Polaris dealership at the east end of town. The Great Trail runs north and south through town, and the Primary Trail runs east to west.

In addition to the groomed trails, there are a number of ungroomed routes and logging roads that you can access with the help of some local guides and a GPS unit.

The Porcupine Forest

Come to this area for a lengthy ride that takes you southeast through the Porcupine Hills almost to the Manitoba border (about 130 kilometres). There are shelters along the way, and the Moose Range Lodge at the end is a good place to stop and indulge yourself in homestyle comfort food.

The Pasquia Hills 

If you travel northwest from Hudson Bay, you can find a large area maintained by the Pasquia Snow Goers Club Inc. The Pasquia Hills and Pasquia Provincial Forest offer plenty of groomed trails and generous amounts of snow.

The Wildcat Hill Provincial Wilderness Park

This peaceful park has protected boreal forest, so ride respectfully. It has the elevation gains you need for the best possible snow accumulation, and experienced sledders from other provinces come here to try the terrain.

Where to buy a snowmobile trail pass in Hudson Bay

Saskatchewan snowmobilers have access to the trails as part of their annual provincial registration fee, which can be purchased at any Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) broker location. Riders coming from out of province need to have valid registration and insurance as per laws inside their home province or state.

A few words of caution

This part of Saskatchewan can see some variable weather conditions and the terrain isn’t always easily traversable. For beginners in particular, it’s important to stay on the designated trails. If you want to test your skills as a more advanced rider, you can venture off the main trails in places without being separated too far from your group.

If you’re going to the remote Wildcat Hill Provincial Wilderness Park, be aware of its rugged landscape and abundant wildlife. It should be attempted only by experienced backcountry snowmobilers, as there are no services or warm-up facilities available there.

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