Newcomers’ guide to winter
Is this your first winter in Saskatchewan? Read ahead to learn a few things to help you make the best of winter!
Winter officially starts on December 21, but in Saskatchewan, we see winter weather conditions as early as the beginning of November. From temperatures dropping well below zero degrees to lots and lots of snow.
Knowing how to dress for Saskatchewan winters can help you stay warm and safe outdoors. Choosing the right fabrics and knowing how to layer is key to staying warm and dry. If you are going to spend time outside, it is important to have a
Base layer: to keep your skin as dry as possible
Middle layer: to hang onto as much body heat as possible
Outer layer: to protect you from rain, snow and wind
It is also very important to protect your head, neck, hands and feet from the cold. In cold temperatures, skin that isn’t properly covered or protected can freeze quickly. When skin freezes, it’s called frostbite. The most common body parts to get frostbite are the cheeks, ears, nose, fingers, and toes. So make sure to have a toque/hat, scarves, gloves/mittens and a good pair of winter boots.
Driving in the winter
It is important to drive slowly and always maintain plenty of distance between vehicles to keep yourself and others safe. It is also great to have winter tires – traction is the key to good movement, turning and stopping on wet, slushy or icy surfaces.
If you plan to go on the highway in the winter, always check the highway hotline to know the road conditions before you leave.
It is also important to keep a roadside emergency kit for emergencies. Your kit should have a:
- a shovel
- snow brush
- ice scraper
- booster cables
- first-aid kit
If you’re stuck on the highway, please stay in your car. Do not try to walk on the road to find help.
There are many other important things to be aware of for winter driving. Our friends at SGI have put together a winter driving guide to keep you safe when driving in winter. Click here to read it.
Snow Routes are declared:
- When snowfall has reached a minimum of 5 cm of snow
- At 3 p.m. the day before parking bans are in effect
- Any day of the week
Snow routes keep traffic moving and expedite snow plowing after heavy snowfall by declaring a 24-hour parking ban along a designated route.
When a snow route is declared, it means there is no parking for 24 hours. Vehicles that remain on the snow route during the temporary parking ban will be ticketed for $120. Check out the City of Regina’s Snow route information here.
Once you know how to dress appropriately for the weather, winter is not so bad! There are plenty of indoor and outdoor activities that you can find to enjoy the winter.
Visit the Wascana Centre
There are so many things to do in this park. Open year-round, in the winter, you can spend some time skating, walking, cross-country skiing, or even biking around the park!
Pack your toboggan and head to one of the many hills around the city where you can slide down the hill for hours of fun outdoor time.
Visit White Butte Trails Recreation Site
White Butte Trails Recreation Site is a great place to go for a winter walk, snowshoe or cross-country ski. This beautifully maintained park is just outside Regina and is a great place to get some fresh air and explore the prairies!
Explore A.E. Wilson Park
So many things to do here! This is a great space to spend time with family, go for a walk or enjoy their outdoor skating rink.
Go to winter festivals and activities.
Stay tuned for activities like Iceville, Saskatchewan’s largest public outdoor skating surface, and Frost festival, an exciting winter festival happening February 3-12, 2023. During the holiday season, the city hosts Regina Downtown’Annual Tree Lighting. This year it is happening on November 16th! The full event takes place from 5:00 to 9:00 pm on the Pat Fiacco Plaza.
Join the Regina Multisports Club
If you want to find people who enjoy the same sport as you or want to find new activities, you should check out the Regina Multisports Club! Some of their winter activities include fat biking, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing across the city.
Explore Mission Ridge Winter Park
Mission Ridge Winter Park is Southern Saskatchewan’s premier Skiing, Snowboarding and Snow-Tubing resort. They also offer a variety of lesson options to increase your skills. if you want to try downhill skiing and snowboarding without taking a long trip to the mountains, this is a great place to explore!
Visit the many parks around the city
Regina has many parks throughout the city that you can visit for walks, tobogganing and spending time outdoors. Check out this website to find a park near you! https://www.regina.ca/parks-recreation-culture/parks/parks-playgrounds-picnic-sites/
There are plenty of indoor activities for you, your friends and your family!
Here are just a few of them
- Royal Saskatchewan Museum
- MacKenzie Art Gallery
- Art Gallery of Regina
- Saskatchewan Science Centre
- RCMP Heritage Centre
- Regina Public Library
Winters in Saskatchewan are long, but if you know how to keep warm and get around safely, you will find many ways to help you and your family make the best of winter!
If you have any questions or would like to add to the list of activities here, we’d love to hear from you! You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org