Cindy Lazarenko and her daughters return to their tent flush with the excitement of new discovery. A camping experience at Métis Crossing will do that to just about anyone. There is a make-your-own adventure feel to camping here. Campers can delve into early frontier history and learn about the Métis people, learn archery, paddle like a voyageur, gather round a fire to hear Métis folk tales, or retire to their own space for some relaxing time outside in nature.
“We always knew it was here but we didn’t really know what was here,” says Cindy. When they found out, she says, “We instantly wanted to be part of it. There’s just so much potential and we love it out here. It’s beautiful.”
From the private deck of their trapper’s tent overlooking the North Saskatchewan River, prairie, sky and river stretch as far as the eye can see. Time eddies here. Staying in the trapper’s tents, on the former settlement site, you can almost imagine yourself stepping briefly into the life of the settlement.
At just 1.5 hours’ drive from Edmonton, there is a simplicity to staying here too—a ready-made camping experience, with shelter, bed frames and mattresses, and indoor heating for those cool nights. Bring some camping chairs, a Coleman and some sleeping bags (and any other camping essentials you might like), and you’re all set.
It’s enough to come here and just soak in the vibe of this place. After all, while Métis Crossing may be one of Canada’s newest Indigenous heritage sites, it sits on the site of the historic Victoria Settlement. But once you set foot on this land, with its deep human and natural history thrumming in every windswept blade of grass, it will beckon you to explore.