Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park is located in southwestern Saskatchewan and southeastern Alberta close to the United States border.
[1- Cypress Hills, Bald Butte]
The Cypress Hills are the highest point of land between Labrador and the Canadian Rockies (160 miles to the west), rising 600 metres (1,950 feet) above the surrounding ranch land. A unique aspect of this area is 10,000 years ago when the land was covered by a sheet of continental glacial ice this plateau was untouched. They have a rich history from Canada’s “wild west” with whiskey traders, outlaws and Indians.
[2-click for larger view]
The park is divided into two sections: the Centre Block where the amenities and most of the campgrounds are located and the West Block, an undeveloped wilderness area adjacent to the Fort Walsh Historic Site which reaches into the province of Alberta.
The Centre Block contains 15 campgrounds with full service hookups including hot showers and modern facilities; while the West Block wilderness area has two rustic campgrounds and an equestrian campground.
[4- Ressor Lake]
There are four distinct habitats and a climate more moderate than the surrounding prairies. Eighteen species of orchids are among the 700 varieties of plant life found in the park.
The majestic lodgepole pines crowning the hills and the lower-lying aspen stands are home to elk, pronghorn antelope, white-tailed deer, fox, coyote and bobcat.
[7-Battle Creek - lower right corner shows trout]
For fishing enthusiasts the Cypress Hills offers some of the best trout fishing in Saskatchewan. The Battle Creek in the West Block wilderness area has Rainbow, Brown and the occasional Brook Trout. This creek is perfect for fly fishers and ultra light spin fishers. Another area is Boiler Creek, in the Centre Block, that has a series of beaver ponds containing Brookies.
[8- Loch Leven]
Loch Leven, in the Centre Block, is surrounded by lodgepole pines and offers angling for Brook and Cutthroat Trout. An effective method for fishing is fly fishing.
[9-another view of Loch Leven]
There are over 17km of groomed trails in Cypress Hills Park for cross-country skiing in the winter.
Photo Credits: -jenjie CC=nc-nd-flickr, -Travis King CC=nc-flickr, -pansapien CC=nc-sa-flickr, -Dave.Kuehn CC=nc-flickr, -Space Ritual CC=nd-flickr, -dinwelch CC=nc-flickr, -jaysspace.com CC=flickr, -calupso_orchid CC=nc-nd-flickr.