The park is open all year with fantastic summer and
- Explore with than 50 kilometres of trails for hiking and mountain biking.
Approximately 15 kilometres of trails in two separate trail systems
are groomed and track set for
- Enjoy three lakes and lots of water activities in warm
weather! In winter,
ice fishing is popular.
- Go sightseeing or wildlife viewing year-round. Take your
- As a dark-sky preserve, the Cypress
Hills are also a remarkable place to view the natural beauty of the
The Cypress Hills are significantly higher than the surrounding
plains so summers are often cooler and winters often warmer.
- Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park is a dark-sky preserve - a
sanctuary from artificial light. A dark-sky preserve is an
area that maintains the nocturnal environment in as pristine a
manner as possible. This makes a better environment for
nocturnal wildlife and it's great for stargazing.
- The Cypress Hills Dark-Sky Preserve is one of the darkest,
largest and most easily accessible dark-sky preserves.
- On September 28, 2004, Cypress Hills Interprovincial
Park was designated as a Dark-Sky Preserve by the governments of
Alberta, Saskatchewan and Canada, in partnership with the Royal
Astronomical Society of Canada. It is the first park in
Saskatchewan and Alberta to become fully recognized as a dark-sky preserve in North America.
- The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada-Saskatoon
Centre organizes the Summer Star Party each August in Cypress
Hills Interprovincial Park-Saskatchewan. The event is one
of the largest gatherings of stargazers in Canada.
- At the 2001 Summer Star Party, amateur astronomer Vance Petriew
discovered a comet - officially designated as Comet Petriew
- There is a new dome observatory in Cypress Hills
Interprovincial Park-Saskatchewan which provides great astonomy
viewing for beginner to advanced stargazers.
Two outstanding features of Cypress Hills Interprovincial
Park-Alberta are Horseshoe Canyon Viewpoint and Reesor
Viewpoint. Look north on a clear day to see rolling hills,
coulees and flat prairie landscape for more than 100
Refer to our driving routes map for
sightseeing by vehicle.
The Cypress Hills are one of Alberta's prime wildlife viewing
areas. Please remember that wildlife are wild.
- Spring and fall are the best seasons for wildlife viewing in
the Cypress Hills. In spring, catch a glimpse of a newborn mule
deer or moose. In fall, listen to the bugle of the elk.
- The varied plant communities here provide homes for many
animals including elk, moose, wild turkeys, deer, pine martens and
cougars. There are no bears in the Cypress Hills (the last one was
shot in 1890).
- Download our Mammals Checklist.
This is one of the best birdwatching locations in Canada. The
Cypress Hills are an island of forest in a sea of grassland.
More than 220 bird species have been recorded here. The area's
unique environment provides habitat for typical prairie birds, plus
many species normally found in the foothills and forests far to the
west and north.
- Northern saw-whet owls, red-breasted nuthatches and ruffed
grouse live in coniferous forests.
- Dusky flycatchers, ruby-crowned kinglets, yellow-rumped
warblers and many other birds are common in the Cypress Hills but
far from their usual ranges.
- Dark-eyed juncos and yellow-rumped warblers breed primarily in
the Rocky Mountains and the forests of northern Canada but there
are isolated populations of these species in the park.
- Ferruginous hawks, northern shrikes and Baird's sparrows, all
threatened species, are occasionally seen.
- Some birds seen very rarely in western Canada have also been
recorded in the park. One example is the common
- The wild turkey, another unusual bird, was introduced to the
Cypress Hills in the 1960s.
- Download our Bird Checklist.
- The Cypress Hills are an orchid-lover's paradise.
Fourteen orchid species are found here including the calypso
orchid and the yellow lady's slipper. Many of these fragile and
stunning flowers are found on hiking trails in spring and early
- There are wildflowers here that are not found anywhere else on
the prairies. This is a result of the park's position high on
- Download our Orchids Checklist.