Claire Miller of Wildernook led groups of walkers to various locations of interest in Little Red River park on Oct. 24. Photo Susan McNeil/Daily Herald

A move by the City of Prince Albert, Sask Outdoors and Wildernook to get people outside in a time of year they might choose to stay inside managed to draw groups of people to Little Red River Park over the weekend.

With funding provided by SaskLotteries, four groups of people ranging from six per group to as much as 12, learned a little more about the wilderness at their back door.

“The idea we had with Sask Outdoors and the City was to invite people out to engage and experience in nature in the times of year when they might need that extra push or motivation to come out,” said Claire Miller, Director of Wildernook Fresh Air Learning.

All ages came out from toddlers to grandparents and they got off the beaten path with Miller’s guidance.

“This one is unique. It’s a pandemic so that calls for a bit of a modified response,” said Miller. “We’re travelling on an older road, it has a bit more space and we’re calling it a hybrid experience.”

After taking about 40 minutes to make stop at various locations, groups learned things like the fact the Nisbet forest is what’s called a forest island; it is surrounded by development such as agriculture land.

Claire Miller of Wildernook shows a group how the Prince Albert area has ‘forest islands’ that are surrounded by development. Photo Susan McNeil/Daily Herald

One idea is to have wildlife corridors stretching between different forest islands that allows wildlife to travel and feel safe.

Walkers got the chance to dress warmly for the wet, cool weather, be outside and learn about the forest ecology.

Following the guided portion of the event, walkers could do a self-guided tour and also look for QR codes to scan on trees that lead to more information on the trees.

The attendees enjoyed the walks, said Miller with responses ranging from ‘this is lots of fun’ to ‘I didn’t know that about this place’ or ‘I’ve never been here before’.

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