Wilderness tucked into Winnipeg
Paddling the Seine river, you know you are inside the city yet it feels wild and intimate. From your boat, it seems you can reach out your blade and touch the riverbank on either side. Perhaps not without tipping the canoe! Watch for the whip-like tail of a muskrat slipping through the water or the prehistoric armour of a snapping turtle.
Wear a good pair of shoes or boots in case you need to occasionally step out for a quick portage around a fallen tree or other obstacle. Best paddled in spring and early summer when water levels peak, the Seine can turn a bit wild in high water.
Note the occasional riffle structures along the river that create little rapids. These represent part of the restoration work completed on the Seine and play an important role in improving the river’s habitat and health.
Pay attention if you hear ‘Fore!’ as the Seine passes through the middle of both the Windsor Park and St. Boniface golf courses. The odd tunnel is another fun feature of this urban river, with low tucks in the boat depending on water levels.
Practice your French pronunciation as you pass through St. Germaine Forest, Vermette Park, Bois des Esprits, Riel Mill Site, Gabrielle Roy Park, Dumoulin Park, Gaboury Lagimodere Heritage Park, and finally Whittier Park. Here, the journey ends, as the tiny Seine becomes one with the Red River.
Pick up a copy of the Seine River Greenway map for juicy details on the flora, fauna, history and more on this hidden gem of a river.
Take a Tour
Have a few Hours?
Launch at Gaboury Lagimodiere Heritage Park and paddle upstream as far as comfortable before returning to your put-in spot. For fun, allow time to paddle to the Seine’s mouth at the Red and return. Afterwards, stretch your legs along the pathways through the park. Feed your hunger and ‘ride’ the train car with lunch at nearby Resto Gare. Watch for high water levels when the tiny Seine gathers strength.
Skill Level: Family/ Novices
Want more of a challenge?
Start at Ducharme Park and paddle through to Gaboury Lagimodiere Heritage Park. Arrange a shuttle with Northern Soul or hop on a city bus to get back to your put-in. Use Navigo, Winnipeg Transit’s online planner, to find options. Plug in the major cross streets as your start (Provencher and Des Meurons) and finish (Morrow and St. Anne’s Rd) points. At the end of the day, treat yourself to a fabulous meal on the tiny patio at Step’n Out Sur le Boulevard.