A Cozy Autumn Getaway to Riding Mountain National Park

Posted October 11, 2023 | Author Shel Zolkewich

Spectacular scenery, the sweetness of a warm fall day and ultra-cozy stays are just the beginning of your autumn visit to Riding Mountain National Park.


Open the door to understated chic at Lakehouse’s new Marigold Cottage. The three-bedroom, two-bathroom abode is the definition of rustic luxury and it’s conveniently tucked right into the centre Lakehouse’s property in Wasagaming. Grab a latte and a great book and find your favourite spot on the twin sofas in the living room. Whip up a snack for the crowd in the modern-edged kitchen and serve it on that massive wooden dining table. Upstairs, the bedrooms are tucked under the eaves, making for cozy spaces and a truly iconic cottage feel.

Down the way, there’s Arrowhead Family Resort with a room style to fit any group, including ones with four-legged members! Best of all, there’s a wood-fired sauna out front to chase away those evening chills.

Marigold Cottage

Marigold Cottage

Marigold Cottage


Turning leaves, quiet waters, misty mornings and that unmistakable smell of autumn outdoors makes a walk in the woods a must. Head to the marina to pick up the trailhead of Clear Lake South Shore Trail, with lots of options to make it as long or short as you want. On your way back, take a detour through Ominnik Marsh Trail and the boardwalk that puts hikers up close to cattails and migrating waterfowl.

Pop into the Friends of Riding Mountain National Park and rent a fat bike to tour the park’s diverse trails. E-bikes make those rolling hills of the park just a bit easier to navigate for the flatlanders among us. Rent one from the Clear Lake Marina stand, located between the Tempo Gas Station and the Whitehouse Bakery.

Spectacular sunsets await on your evening cruise aboard The Martese, Clear Lake’s beloved vessel. Wind along the shoreline while enjoying a cocktail and nibbling in the delicious spinach and artichoke dip.

Get in one last round at the picturesque Clear Lake Golf Course. The first nine holes of this 1930s beauty were designed by renowned architect Stanley Thompson, who gets high marks for his work on Alberta courses in Banff and Jasper.

Venture down the 30-kilometre gravel road that leads to the park’s most visited residents—a herd of captive bison at Lake Audy. Along the way, keep your eyes peeled for moose, bear and elk.


A big stone fireplace, warm wood walls and nostalgic images await diners inside cozy Lakehouse Restaurant. Start with the Manitoba charcuterie board, add a hand-crafted cocktail and dig into the ooey gooey goodness of truffle cream mac and jack cheese.



For more than three decades, T.R. McKoys has been dishing up Italian inspired fare in the space that was once home to The Park Luncheonette. Generations of visitors gather inside the log-clad room over irresistible calamari and steaming plates of penne with Italian sausage.

Splurge on an oh-so-cozy blanket at Lakehouse Café + Adventure Goods or show your Riding Mountain pride with a branded sweatshirt. It’s also the place to grab a coffee before your morning hike.

Restock those fancy foods with a stop at Camp Cantina, Clear Lake’s new multipurpose deli and groceteria that also become a wine bar later in the day. Pick up locally made chili crunch, curated cheeses, buttery caramels and a handy carry bag for all your treats.

Camp Cantina

About The Author

A journalist by trade and an adventurer at heart, my career has included stints as a reporter, magazine writer, editor, food stylist, television cook and digital marketer. I am always collecting stories about Manitoba, whether I’m on assignment or not.