Hecla Island, MB, Canada
Hecla Island is a paradise for those who enjoy the outdoors, wildlife and bird watching. The Island also includes an historic Icelandic Village, walking trails through the Grassy Narrows Marsh, rugged limestone cliffs, beaches, a harbour, one of Canada’s best golf courses, and first class fishing.
With an area of 1,084 km2, Hecla/Grindstone Provincial Park is characterized by a peninsula of land, a series of islands and adjacent waters in Lake Winnipeg. Landscapes are varied, and include areas of coniferous and mixed forests, limestone cliffs and silica sand beaches, as well as marshes, bogs, fens and wet meadows.
Classified as a Natural Park, its purpose is to preserve areas that are representative of the Mid Boreal Lowland portion of the Manitoba Lowlands Natural Region; and accommodate a diversity of recreational opportunities and resource uses.
The park will:
· Provide nature-orientated recreational opportunities such as hiking, wildlife viewing and cross-country skiing in a largely undisturbed environment;
· Provide opportunities for a wide range of high-quality intensive recreational activities and permit associated developments such as campgrounds, commercial resorts, harbours and cottaging;
Picturesque Hecla Village has been a lived-in Icelandic settlement since 1876. You can go on a 1km self-guided tour of the old lakefront buildings, most still in use, and check out the pelicans haunting the fishermen on the lakeshore. Ask at Hecla School about the Hecla Island Heritage Home Museum – a re-created 1920s Icelandic home.
There is a driving permit charge for entering Hecla Island.
· Protect and maintain Aboriginal cultural sites on Black Island and the Icelandic fishing settlement on Hecla Island;
· Promote public appreciation and understanding of the park’s natural features; and
Accommodate commercial resource uses such as hay and peat leases, where such activities do not compromise other park purposes.
The northern end of Hecla Island is about 175 km from downtown Winnipeg-an easy 2 1/4-hour drive.