Riverlot 56 Natural Area provides a natural refuge adjacent to the City of St. Albert in Sturgeon County, and is a well-loved destination for local residents. It allows for nature-based recreation in the form of hiking and bird- and plant-watching in all seasons, and cross-country skiing in the winter.
Map of the Area
Any maps and map views are for general information only. Do not rely on them for navigation or to determine legal boundaries.
HISTORY [1, 4, adapted]: Riverlot 56 is one of the original parcels of land subdivided during settlement of the region in the 1900s. It went unsold from the 1800s until purchased by the Dominion government to build a residential school on.
In 1965, the unused portion of the lot was transferred to the provincial government. At that time, the intention was to build Alberta’s third university. A change in government saw the university moved up Highway 2 to Athabasca and the lot remained vacant.
Since 1973, local groups have maintained the area for outdoor education and nature-based recreation.
ENVIRONMENT : The site lies in the Central Parkland Subregion and contains upland aspen forests, streambed and ravine communities and open meadows, which provide habitat for wildlife including White-tailed Deer, Moose, Coyote, Snowshoe Hare, Muskrat and Beaver. Under a municipal bylaw, hunting is prohibited in this natural area.
RECREATION [3, adapted]: Recreational ctivities include:
- Cross-Country Skiing: There are approximately 8 km of groomed cross-country ski trails in the Riverlot 56 Natural Area.
- Snowshoeing: (Be careful to avoid the set-tracks in the above ski trails.)
- Hiking: There’s a self-guided interpretive walking trail.
- Wildlife Viewing: Species include White-tailed Deer, Moose, Coyote, Snowshoe Hare, Muskrat and Beaver.
- Geocaching Site
|Site Name||Riverlot 56|
|Site Type||Natural Area|
|Natural Region(s)||Central Parkland|
|O.C. No. (Land Ref. Manual)||221/87|
|PASite ID (Map Ref #)||453|
|Site # (Parks Website)||416|
|Total Area||109.27 ha. (270.01 ac.)|
|Recreation Activities||Hiking – front country, Wildlife viewing|
|Operated By||Parks Division|
|Notes and Comments|
References, Further Reading and Links
The following links are provided as a courtesy but are not verified or endorsed by SAPAA. Clicking on the link will cause you to leave the SAPAA website.
- Government of Alberta – Riverlot 56 Natural Area (accessed 2022-01-08).
- Alberta Parks website, 2012.
- Riverlot 56, City of St. Albert (accessed 2022-01-08).
Further Reading [OPTIONAL]
- Riverlot 56 Then & Now, T8N Magazine (accessed 2022-01-08, Download-Article).
- Riverlot 56 Celebrates 30 Years!, SAPAA-NEWSLETTER NO. 29, SEPTEMBER 2013.