When I was researching my trip to Narrow Hills, I found a bit of information about trails and camping offered in the area, but nothing too extensive talking about activities or camping in the area. The majority of the information I found was about fishing and mention of the Gem Lakes Trail. I wasn’t too sure of what to expect when we pulled into the park.
We were planning for an un-serviced campsite, and we decided to stay at our first stop, Ispuchaw Lake. We found a beautiful little spot overlooking the lake. The site offers only five spots. Three of the spots are closer together, and the other two are more secluded. This site would be perfect for the kayaking or canoeing enthusiast. The lake offers ample fishing and boating.
We had a later start on our first day in the park, so we decided to check out the other campsites surrounding our site. There are some great un-serviced campsites at Beardy Lake as well! This site is great for trailers, and has a great boat launch.
The town office is located a short drive away from Ispuchaw Lake, at Lower Fishing Lake. There are a few surrounding
communities around the park, just in case there is any forgotten gear. As well, for those staying in the park Lower Fishing Lake main campsite does offer great shower facilities (we all know its important!) They also offer boat rentals near the main campsite, in case those beautiful lakes inspire the desire to be out on the water, which they probably will.
We decided to tackle Gem Lakes on our second day in the park. This beautiful 6km trail travels around 7 lakes. This stunning hike offers several back country campsites as well. Each of the lakes has signage explaining the different plants and animals surrounding the area to watch out for. The signs also explain the backstory of each of the lakes. This trail has a lot of shaded and sunny areas. I recommend dressing in layers for the temperature changes. This is an absolutely must-do while in the park. It’s an absolutely stunning trail, with beautiful views of the seven lakes.
The next day we decided to take a drive down The Narrow Hills Scenic Road. While we were at the town office, we were told there were several older, un-serviced trails along this road, as well as ski trails, and we planned to stop along the drive to check them out. The drive was beautiful (Another must), the winding gravel road goes for about 10km. While on our drive we would explore the different lakes and look outs along the way. My favourite stops were Mackie Lake, or Lily Pad Lake. Mackie Lake offers a beautiful short sandy walk to the river bed, this would be a great place to stop a take a lunch. Lily Pad Lake offers and phenomenal overview of the lake with a great view of the green lily pads surrounding the shore line.
At the end of Narrow Hills Road, the road is no longer serviced and unsuitable for cars, we decided the jump out of the vehicle and explore the snowmobile trails down this road. This is a beautiful easy hike, and a road that isn’t frequently travelled. We walked for approximately 5km down the road before turning around to see what else we could find on out travels.
As we drove back down the road we came across Old PA Trail, this trial is no
longer serviced and it makes for a more difficult hike as you will have to cross fallen trees and make your way through the under bush. Off of this trail you can hike, Beaver Lake Trail, Heiberg Lake Trail, Island Lake Trail, or take the cross country ski path. This trail was so much fun, we spent our afternoon exploring this area. This trail truly give you the feeling of being out in the boreal forest. The trail was filled with wild flowers, and we listened to birds sing while we walked. We often heard loon’s when we were approaching another lake. This trail although not often travelled does have trail markers, and signage to update you on your location. I would certainly call this trail a hidden gem. Its not advertised through the town office, but its one of the most beautiful trails I have ever travelled.
I highly recommend a trip to Narrow Hills Provincial Park, bring your hiking gear, bring your kayak or canoe, and get ready to experience the beauty that is northern Saskatchewan. On this trip we saw an abundance of wildlife, we saw several bears, moose, deer, pelicans, loons, wild turkeys, and more bush bunnies than I could count!