Well, here we are, smack dab in winter. Maybe you're someone who loves the outdoors, no matter what time of year. Or maybe you're going through the motions of your routine, dealing with shorter, darker days, and just trying to finish off the year as best you can.
But have you considered how much nature can offer, right at your fingertips? Though it's always been there, it might not regularly be on your radar.
Nature brings out the best in us as it plays an essential role in our lives and well-being. It's important to remember not only how accessible it is but also how much joy it can bring. As you get older, getting outdoors can easily take a backseat in your day-to-day life. It's always a good idea to make time to reconnect with nature with loved ones.
If you're in or around Winnipeg, a fun way to rediscover the great outdoors this season is by checking out the Red River Mutual Skating Trail.
Each year, this over 10 km trail at The Forks is full of skaters enjoying the lengthy river while it's frozen. In fact, it holds the Guinness World Record for hosting the world's longest chain of ice skaters in 2018!
The trail sits on the Assiniboine and/or Red Rivers, but its exact location, length, and route change each year depending on weather conditions and the way the river freezes.
That being said, most people don't actually skate the entire length. It's absolutely recommended and most common to only do shorter bits and pieces of the trail at once.
So, before you head out, know how much you and your family can handle, and remember that you'll be making that same trip back once you turn around.
Be sure to take a hot chocolate break before doing so — you'll have earned it!
Don't worry if skating isn't your thing or if the trail happens to be closed. It's entirely dependent on the weather and ice conditions, but it's typically open from January through March.
Plus, you can also enjoy a variety of family-friendly outdoor activities like walking, curling, hockey, cycling, and broomball.
There are even special family events on weekends. For example, last year in the warming huts, visitors were treated to An Arts + Architecture Competition on Ice.
There were five new and unique huts that included a performance pavilion, where Royal Canoe entertained on a custom-made ice stage. How amazingly Canadian!
If you don't own skates, that's no problem at all since skate rentals are available in The Forks Market from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. You can grab an adult pair for $6, and skates for kids or seniors are $4.
Last but definitely not least, dogs are welcome just as long as you keep them on-leash and clean up after them.
Whether you're skating or participating in any outdoor activity, you and your entire family will likely work up a healthy appetite.
To fuel your outing on the trail, no matter how far you make it, Nature Valley granola bars are a wholesome and easy grab-and-go companion. Made with natural and tasty ingredients derived from nature, these convenient snacks are perfect for all of your outdoor adventures, on or off the skating trail.
Red River Mutual Skating Trail
Price: $4-$6 for skate rentals
When: TBD depending on weather and ice conditions, but typically from January to March
Address: River Walk, Winnipeg, MB (access from The Forks and a variety of other points along the river; check the website for which points are open)
Why You Need To Go: Immerse yourself in a lovely Winnipeg winter tradition.