In addition to the recent and ongoing projects of the Westlake Integrated Watershed Management Plan, Alonsa Agrriculture Community Restorative Enterprise and Memorial Garden and the Garrioch Creek Fisheries Enhancement Project, Alonsa Conservation District also helps to contribute and maintain several historic sites and nature trails in the area.
The Portia Marsh Boardwalk, located 2 miles down Kewana road, a gravel road off of PR278, captures a healthy marshland. The natural vegetation here supports hundreds of bird species and over 25 species of mammals. While you look out over the marsh from the lookout tower at the start of the boardwalk, watch for families of Canada Geese and the different duck species, including Mallards, Blue-winged Teal, and Redhead ducks. The Marsh is also home to fishing birds like the Blue Heron, Pelicans, Loons, and Bitterns. Mink, muskrat and beavers are among the marsh mammals commonly observed at this site.
Walking further into the marsh you will learn about the many aspects of the wetland environment on the colorful interpretive signs painted by international award winning artist, Jim Carson. You are able to really take in your surroundings from an observation area located in the middle of the boardwalk. As you venture to the end of the boardwalk, you will find that Portia Marsh offers visitors the added enjoyment of a walking trail that extends along the marsh, as well as areas in which you may rest your legs and have a picnic.
Bacon Ridge and Dog Nature Trails
A traditional gathering place where Aboriginal people give offerings. The Medicine Rock is located about 10 km southeast of Ste. Amelie, within the Alonsa Wildlife Management Area, which is approximately 80 sq. km and contains several walking trails. The site itself is located along a 13 km trail, and includes interpretive signage to guide your visit and visitors are encouraged to leave a small gift of tobacco or cloth as a symbol of respect for the spirits there.
Following interpretive signs but up by the Alonsa Conservation District staff, You will learn the legend of the Thunderbird as you approach this nest located 4 miles West of the Lake Manitoba Narrows, off of Highway #68, this nest was thought to once be home to the legendary Thunderbird. the Thunderbird, often described as a super eagle capable of transforming into a man and able to cause lightning by the flashing of its eyes, was considered to be a guardian by natives of long ago. The Thunderbird nest was constructed to attract the Thunderbird as a guardian spirit. The builder would then be rewarded with special powers. Some say they feel the presence of something strange when they visit these mystical grounds.
Jack Pine Wayside Park is located along Hwy 50 about half way between McCreary and Alonsa, Manitoba. With a picnic area and children's playground, this park is a perfect pit stop if you are driving through the area. The park also includes a walking trail with several interpretive signs with information on local wildlife.
The Bacon Ridge Trails were formed in the summer of 1995. Located just South of Ebb & Flow Reserve along PR278, these trails extend for 5 kilometers into aspen and spruce woodland, with signs to guide you along the way. Walking or riding through and exploring this trail may lead you to see some wildlife.
Dog Trail is a grass trail located behind Alonsa Public School. This trail contains the location of a snake pit, an exciting scene for anyone willing to look! At the other end is also a nice pond.
Jack Pine Wayside Park
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Portia Marsh Boardwalk