If you haven't heard, 2020 marks the 150th anniversary of Manitoba's entrance into confederation. This year will be marked by celebrations and initiatives across the province, including the introduction of an epic contest that rewards you for visiting amazing places around Manitoba.
To get started, download the app to your phone. Inside, you'll find 150 locations for you to visit located all over the province. The harder it is to get to, the more entries you'll get. Those are marked in the green circle on each location. There are also challenges you can complete (click on the little trophy icon in the bottom right corner to see them) that will earn you badges. There are prizes too--monthly and grand prizes, including a trip to Churchill to see the polar bears.
Over the next twelve months, we'll be introducing you to some of the locations in the app. We thought we'd start with the challenge 'Achieve the Impossible'. These seven locations are all a little more remote, will require a little planning to get to and are also worth the most entries. So, we're giving you a little time to get started.
Pimachiowin Aki - 50 entries
Located on the eastern side of the province, this historic spot achieved UNESCO World Heritage status in 2019 and is the largest stretch of untouched boreal forest on Earth. While there, become one with nature hiking, fishing, boating and back country camping. Home to four Anishinaabe First Nation communities, the site not only offers up miles of untouched wilderness, but also more than 30 locations of ancient pictographs, many of which line the Bloodvein River.
Little Limestone Lake - 25 entries
As one of the most popular images on Instagram, the turquoise blue waters of Little Limestone Lake capture the awe of everyone who looks upon it. Known as one of the best examples of a marl lake in the world, minerals in the lake cause it to change colour from crystal blue to bright turquoise with changes in temperature. This is a non-operational park in that there are no amenities, but visitors are allowed to bring kayaks and canoes to the lake. Those wishing to camp near the area are asked to seek permission from Mosakahiken Cree Nation, as the lake is part of their territory.
Molson Lake Rock Paintings - 25 entries
Located north of Norway House, these mysterious pictographs were discovered painted on rock faces along Paimusk Creek. The site has over 100 drawings and near-perfect acoustics, suggesting this site may have been chosen for a reason. The drawing depict the lives on Indigenous people who lived and passed through this area, sometimes as long as thousands of years ago. A visit to nearby Molson Lake Lodge is the perfect way to get to this historic site.
Tramping Lake Pictographs - 35 entries
Situated at the base of the rocks near the water, it was believed that the Tramping Lake Pictographs were drawn while sitting in canoes. The scenes are painted using red ochre, a naturally tinted clay found in the soil. Historically, Tramping Lake may have welcomed many visitors as it become a common route during the fur trade era as people transported goods to York Factory. Check in at Wekusko Falls Lodge for a boat tour to visit these ancient markers of Indigenous history.
York Factory - 50 entries
Built on the peninsula of the Hayes and Nelson Rivers, this former HBC trading post was once the administration centre for HBC's fur trading network. Established in 1684, York Factory can be accessed via helicopter or on a boat tour with Nelson River Adventures. The fort welcomes only a handful of visitors a year, making it a truly off-the-beaten path experience.
MV Ithaca - 25 entries
When The Ithaca set sail from Churchill in the fall of 1960, it was met with the tumultuous temper of the sea. The captain ordered the anchor dropped but the chain broke, leaving the vessel to be tossed about in the waves. The Ithaca was towed back to shore once the storm passed and the crew walked safely off the boat. Today, it sits on the shore of Hudson Bay and is visible from the Coast Road. It is only accessible at low tide. Its rusted frame back-dropped by the sun setting on the sea makes it one of the province's most hauntingly beautiful scenes.
Robertson Esker - 50 entries
Considered an ecological phenomenon, an esker is a ridge of of sediment left behind by travelling glaciers. In northern Manitoba, the Robertson Esker clocks in at 300-metres long and 324-metres tall, making it the largest of its kind in the world. In addition to an abundance of plants and wildlife, including caribou, moose and arctic fox, the Robertson Esker is also a living museum with tools, arrowheads and other artifacts left behind as people have passed through over the centuries. Book an adventure with Ganglers Sub-Arctic to visit this spot only accessible by plane.