The History of the Métis Crossing
Jul. 11, 2018
Métis Crossing is one of Canada’s great historic sites with a rich history dating back thousands of years.
People travel from all over North America to enjoy the culture and amenities. The site is so historic that archaeologists have discovered a campsite that is roughly 6,000 years old.
Read on to learn why you should visit Métis Crossing. Explore this national historic site and find out about all of the fun family activities.
What Is the History of Métis Crossing?
The primary site lies on the banks of the North Saskatchewan River. It was a major meeting site for the Métis, Europeans, and other Indigenous Peoples.
To the north, the Métis used the crossing to access the fishing grounds. In the south, the crossing led to plains and grasslands that were home to buffalo.
The region really took off in the mid-1800s. This is when a Methodist missionary named George McDougall established a mission at the crossing.
The next step in the Crossing’s evolution was the arrival of a Hudson’s Bay Trading post. Thanks to a robust trading market, Métis emigrated to the Crossing from Saskatchewan and Manitoba.
Indigenous peoples started cultivating the land for farming and traded fur in high volume. This region never looked back and became a permanent river lot community.
What Makes It a Great Family Destination?
The region is now home to a 512-acre historic site. There are many amenities for travellers and families alike.
For nature lovers, the Crossing offers historic trails and wildlife viewing. There are campsites that accommodate RVs, campers, and tents.
Just as the Métis did for hundreds of years, your family can fish on the North Saskatchewan River. There are also 6 zip lines for adventure seekers.
In addition, there is a historic village that includes a culture centre and gift shop. Amphitheatre and canopy walks are also available to visitors. Travellers can enjoy the river on York boats.
What Is National Indigenous Peoples Day
Since 2006, the site holds an annual summer festival to celebrate the Métis and their culture. This event is jam-packed with entertainment, food, and crafts.
For starters, attendees can sing and dance to traditional Métis music. There are a number of bands and dancers that perform at the festival.
In addition, there are talent shows, tours, and races. Most importantly, visitors learn intimate details about the Métis culture. Tourists can cook bannock over open fires. Also, they can perform traditional Métis crafts like beadwork, weaving, and canoe crafting.
Staying true to its rich history, the site has a fur trading post, but there is a modern petting zoo to give the children something fun to do.
Wrapping It Up
Métis culture is so rich in many different ways. The province and dedicated individuals have brought new life and energy to this historic site.
While National Indigenous Peoples Day is a must-attend event that may have already passed, there are amenities available all year long. If you want to learn more about the Métis Crossing, please contact us for additional information.