Snowmobile 1,000 Miles of Snow in Northeast Saskatchewan



Northeast Saskatchewan is home to one of the most unique trail systems in Canada – a 1,000-mile snowmobile route connecting the 12 communities of St. Brieux, Melfort, Tisdale, Kelvington, Zenon Park, Aylsham, Nipawin, Carrot River, Arborfield, Porcupine Plain, Weekes and Hudson Bay.


Snowmobilers are not only a common sight in this region, but they are warmly welcomed. In each town, sleds are recognized as legal transportation and there are miniature traffic signs posted in ditches and at intersections. Hotels, cabins, and bed and breakfasts are set up to accommodate multi-day snowmobilers. Some provide heated shops for sleds, while others offer snowmobile parking and space for trucks and trailers. Several accommodations, including Shell’s Fitness and Soul Center in Carrot River and Fir River Ranch in Hudson Bay, have saunas or hot tubs that are perfect for guests to warm up and enjoy some post-ride relaxation.



There are a number of restaurants along the way that offer an unexpected culinary experience worthy of a stop. Not-to-miss locations include The Dam Smokehouse and Mabel Hill Farm Kitchen & Marketplace in Nipawin, The Railway Ave. Pub in Hudson Bay, and Golden Grain Bakery in Melfort.

Weekend trips are convenient to explore each part of the region. But the entire 1,000 miles (more than 1,600 km) of snow is an incredible feat to accomplish for those looking for an extended adventure taking seven to 10 days to travel the entire loop.


Traversing across picturesque parkland with its iconic grain bins and wooden barns, you’ll spot one of Saskatchewan’s last prairie sentinels – a wooden grain elevator – just outside of the community of Weekes. From open fields to the snow-laden jack pine and spruce trees that make up part of the boreal forest, the trails are a prime location for some of Saskatchewan’s best powder and trail riding. It’s not unusual to have up to six feet of snow accumulate throughout the season. This is why it’s one of Saskatchewan’s most popular destinations for snowmobiling.

While Greenwater Lake Provincial Park, north of Kelvington, and Tobin Lake, north of Nipawin, are popular locations for day riders, certain areas are only accessible in wintertime – like Wildcat Hill Provincial Park, east of Arborfield. Muskeg conditions and lack of roads make it nearly impenetrable in the summertime. But in winter, the carefully routed and groomed trail winds its way up to Bankside Lake through dwarf forests and along several steep canyons. The warm-up shelter on the edge of the lake is the only sign of civilization in the otherwise rugged and wild park.

A wonderful part of snowmobiling these trails is discovering the unique shelters built and maintained by the local snowmobile clubs. The 1,000 Miles of Snow trail system wouldn’t be the success it is without the countless hours of work contributed by each community, snowmobile club and their local volunteers.

There are more than 40 shelters on the 1,000 Miles of Snow route, including one of the newest located between Zenon Park and Arborfield. The shelter is modelled after a red railway station, complete with its own rail crossing sign out front.

Shelters are equipped with indoor stoves, outdoor firepits, racks to hang and dry gear, first aid kits, maps, chopped wood, an axe and an outhouse. But best of all, they are the perfect spot to stop and prepare a meal, while warming up and sharing in good conversation with friends.

How to Plan Your Trip

If you’re planning to ride the 1,000 Miles of Snow route, here are a few recommendations to help you prepare for your trip.

1. Pick Your Route

Decide whether you want to travel out from a single location or carry an overnight bag and stop in a different community each night. Tisdale and Porcupine Plain are great central locations, while St. Brieux is the perfect starting point to head east and loop the trail system.

Share a detailed trip itinerary with family or friends and carry a route map with you. The Saskatchewan Snowmobile Association has an interactive online trail map. There is also an app (Sask Snowmobile Trails) for both Apple and Android phones that works offline if the trail maps have been downloaded in advance.

2. Layer Up

Temperatures in Saskatchewan can drop below -30 C. Merino wool and fleece are ideal layers to wear underneath a snowmobile suit. Avoid cotton clothing as it absorbs moisture and makes you feel cold and damp. Wearing thickly insulated gear designed for snowmobiling is best for staying warm. Hand and feet warmers are easy to stash in a pocket and can add an extra bit of warmth on long rides or particularly cold days.

3. Pack a Trail Lunch

There are more than 40 warm-up shelters spread out along the trail system. Pack in snacks and a thermos or plan a hot dog roast over an open fire for the perfect trail lunch. Make sure to clean up any garbage and take it with you when you leave.

4. Carry Extra Fuel and Parts

Saskatchewan is big and fuel-up locations are limited in each town. Carry a jerry can of gas and a few extra sled parts and tools in the event of a breakdown on the trail. Cell service isn’t guaranteed in all areas, so you’ll want to be prepared if you’re on the trail longer than expected.

5. Leave No Trace

These trails are a wonderful system to access thanks to the dedication and effort of each of the local snowmobile clubs that groom the trails, maintain the shelters, and implement signage along all 1,000 miles. Leave no trace policies, including staying on groomed trails, packing out garbage, and respecting private property and wildlife, ensure the trails remain a safe and welcoming place for everyone.


Author & Photographer: Ashlyn George

Ashlyn George (B.A, B.Ed) is an award-winning travel writer, photographer and content creator behind The Lost Girl’s Guide to Finding the World. She is a go-to travel expert in Saskatchewan but is no stranger to trips abroad. Having travelled solo through more than 60 countries on all 7 continents, she’s a passionate storyteller in pursuit of adventure, learning, and discovery. Find her online @thelostgirlsguide.