In Search of Whoopers
The whisper of the prairie breeze is suddenly disturbed by a loud, bugle-like trumpeting as a family group of three Whooping Cranes, their wings beating slowly and deliberately, fly just above the horizon to reach the edge of the lake northwest of Saskatoon. The area around Saskatoon is one of the most reliable areas on the continent to see the tallest bird in North America, the endangered Whooping Crane. This is also the perfect time to observe one of the world’s best birding spectaculars: the fall waterfowl and shorebird migration. We’ll see snow-white Tundra Swans with 2-metre wingspans and flocks of up to half-a-million White-fronted, Snow, Canada and Ross’ Geese on their way south from arctic nesting grounds. The sonorous calls of the huge flocks of Sandhill Cranes will always attract our attention as they fly overhead to their nearby feeding grounds. Saskatchewan’s backcountry is the perfect place for our prairie waterfowl and wader spectacular.
- Hearing the bugle call of the Whooping Crane for the first time
Observing the two-metre wing span of the Tundra Swan
Hiking the trails of Last Mountain Lake
Day 1: Arrive in Saskatoon, drive to Quill Lake
Day 2: Explore the shores of Last Mountain Lake, the oldest federal bird sanctuary in North America, and Manitou Springs, an alkaline lake known for its healing properties
Day 3: Travel to Diefenbaker Lake, 225km long with enormous inland sand dunes, native prairie, and lush aspen forests
Day 4: Watch the waterfowl flocks darken the sky in the morning on Diefenbaker Lake
Day 5: Visit Gardiner Dam in the Saskatchewan River that holds back Diefenbaker Lake and provides irrigation system water for the farms in the area
Day 6: Look for Whooping cranes on the fields by Rice Lake
Day 7: Visit Wanuskewin Heritage Park, where 19 archaeological sites have been discovered Day 8: Visit the Prairie Sloughs and departure Request a Detailed Itinerary
A “Renaissance Man” with training as an actor, singer, visual artist and teacher, Ian Shanahan spends his summers as a Seasonal Park Naturalist at Algonquin Provincial Park. His love for natural history - “anything that flies”- has taken him to many countries where he enjoys watching, photographing and sketching wildlife.
This tour can be a private departure just for your group.
Please call us at 1-800-387-1483
to find out how you can enjoy
this tour with your family, friends, nature club or organization.
Canada | 8 days
|Leader: ||Ian Shanahan|
|Dates: ||Sep 27 - Oct 04, 2014|
|Cost: ||Approx C$2495|
|Group Size: ||8 participants|
|Includes: ||Accommodation, all meals, all gratuities, all activities and entrance fees, all ground transportation, expert local guides, arrival and departure transfers at destination, accompanied by Quest Nature Tours naturalist-leader.|
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Worldwide Quest, the parent company of Quest Nature Tours, offers an exceptional portfolio of cultural expeditions around the world. Worldwide Quest has been providing travellers experiential travel for over 40 years. We create carefully curated itineraries that offer a depth of authentic cultural experiences to the world’s most interesting destinations. You will appreciate our philosophy of expert-led small group travel with leaders that are knowledgeable, congenial and offer unique perspectives on the countries we tour. Visit our website for our current programs.