Writing-On-Stone Provincial Park/Áísínai’pi National Historic Site
As you venture east from Milk River the prairie seems to widen, urging you ever forward with the promise of something breathtaking. Mother Nature does not disappoint, because in the middle of the expanding landscape is a place that’s otherworldly in both appearance and experience.
Writing-on-Stone Provincial Park is an extraordinary natural treasure. Comprised of 27 square kilometers (6,645 acres) of panoramic prairie and coulee habitat, Writing-On-Stone is a living testament to millions of years of evolution and the spirit of the thousands of people that have lived, hunted, prayed and played here over many centuries.
It’s impossible to describe the magnificence of the park with words alone. You have to see Writing-on-Stone to appreciate it, and once you have seen it you’re never quite the same. The sky changes colour quickly and dramatically, transforming from the brightest shade of blue to fairytale pink, butter yellow, and the darkest azure at the end of the day. A mesmerizing expanse of grassland sweeps and bows like a flock of birds in flight, thousands of blades moving in unison under the slightest breath of wind. A milky river winds and bends, carving the same lazy path it’s been carving for centuries. Thousands of glittering stars decorate the night sky, more than you ever imaged the heavens could possibly hold.
There is great camping, a beautiful sandy beach, and the Milk River is a playground for kayakers and tubers. But it is the ancient hoodoos that draw the most fascination here. The park’s ethereal rock formations are covered in ancient pictographs – stories carved in stone by First Nations people, some thousands of years ago. You are free to wander through the maze of mysterious hoodoos on your own, but tours are offered as well, led by guides that explain the meaning and significance of the etchings as told by Blackfoot elders and scientific study.