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Compiled by the Street Journey Alberta group
Final up to date on July 26, 2022
Is it actually doable to discover a majestic lake in southern Alberta that has all of it? One that’s each open for quite a few water sports activities in addition to gives a phenomenal sandy seashore to chill out on?
Enter Lake Newell, positioned simply 14km south of the small metropolis of Brooks. Lake Newell is one among southern Alberta’s greatest and warmest man-made lakes, attracting guests from throughout to solar on the sandy seashore and play within the waters.
However simply past the #BestLakeLife discovered at Lake Newell, the Brooks Area as an entire has distinctive and enjoyable issues to do all through! You’ll be able to stroll the place dinosaurs roamed, marvel at wonderful feats of engineering, play in lovely Kinbrook Island Provincial Park, pattern unbelievable and regionally made foods and drinks, take within the quintessential Alberta panorama, and a lot extra. Watch the video under, after which learn on for all that there’s to do within the space.
We want to acknowledge that the locations talked about on this publish are positioned on the standard territories of the Blackfoot Nations, which embody the Siksika, the Piikani, and the Kainai. We additionally acknowledge the Tsuut’ina and Stoney Nakoda First Nations, the Métis Nation, and all individuals who walked this land for hundreds of years.
Attending to Lake Newell and the Brooks Area
Calgary to Brooks
At simply over 2 hours, the drive from Calgary to Brooks is kind of scenic. The quickest manner is by way of the Trans-Canada Hwy/AB-1 E heading out of the town in direction of Strathmore. Keep on Trans-Canada Hwy/AB-1 E for 173km till it’s time to merge onto AB-873 S and entry the town of Brooks.
Edmonton to Brooks
If you happen to’re coming from the capital metropolis of Alberta, Brooks is a couple of 4.5 hours drive however offers ample alternative to see extra off-the-beaten-path spots on the way in which. To start the trek, head southeast out of the town on AB-14 E for about 10 km. Then use the fitting lane to take the AB-21 ramp to Fort/Saskatchewan/Camrose. Proceed on AB-21 S for 128 km to AB-53 E till Bashaw the place you will want to show left onto AB-53 E (indicators for Forestburg) for 19 km. Then flip proper onto AB-56 S and proceed on that street via each Stettler and Drumheller which takes roughly 1.5 hours. Observe AB-56 S to Trans-Canada Hwy/AB-1 E in Cluny after which take the Trans-Canada Hwy/AB-1 E proper into the town of Brooks.
Brooks to Lake Newell
When utilizing Brooks as a degree to discover the world, one of the simplest ways to get to Lake Newell from the town takes solely quarter-hour, heading south. Head out of city on 7 St E/AB-873 S. After 13 km, flip proper onto Township Rd 173A for two km. Then flip left onto 145008 Park Rd 103 Rd to entry Lake Newell.
The place to Keep in Brooks
Ramada by Wyndham Brooks is a pet-friendly resort in an amazing location proper off freeway 1, making it the right spot to discover close by points of interest and websites like Lake Newell. Facilities embody a pool, free breakfast served within the mornings, kitchenettes in some rooms, and laundry services.
For these searching for a style of residence whereas visiting the area, Canalta Brooks is pet and family-friendly, offering leisure equivalent to a swimming pool with a waterslide and scorching tub, video games room, visitor laundry, and suites. After having fun with a complimentary scorching breakfast, benefit from the comfort of quick access to native eating places and retailers.
Heritage Inn Resort & Conference Centre
Not solely does the Heritage Inn Resort & Conference Centre boast a phenomenal tropical pond with koi fish within the atrium, nevertheless it additionally gives friends an on-site restaurant, lounge, and nightclub! Conveniently positioned simply off the Trans-Canada Freeway, the Heritage Inn Resort & Conference Centre gives trendy lodging and a number of full-service facilities to make sure a snug and enjoyable keep in your journey.
Heritage Inn & Suites
Heritage Inn & Suites is a boutique-style resort in Brooks that options modern décor and upscale facilities all inside a smoke-free surroundings. There’s an indoor pool and scorching tub, enterprise centre, and library for friends to get pleasure from with spacious suites out there for these needing some extra room to chill out after a busy day exploring.
Tenting at Lake Newell and within the Brooks Area
Moreover inside the provincial park (see extra under), there are additionally some incredible non-public campgrounds price a keep.
Rolling Hills Reservoir Campground
Owned and operated by the Jap Irrigation District (EID), the Rolling Hills Reservoir Campground is positioned 20 kms south of Brooks and sits alongside one among 13 water storage reservoirs that kind the irrigation infrastructure. There are 110 websites out there to e-book on your adventures. The established campground is well-treed and every website has energy out there. Close by the campground are two giant sandy seashore areas (one among them being pet pleasant) excellent for these scorching summer season days. And there’s the marina with a ship launch and boat slips permitting entry to the reservoir for water-related actions.
Emerson Bridge Campground
Emerson Bridge Park Campground boasts 49 energy stalls and eight non-power websites for these trying to arrange camp. You’ll be able to get pleasure from facilities equivalent to flush bathrooms and free showers and leisure for the entire household consists of seashore volleyball, horseshoe pits, camp kitchen, ball diamond, playground, canoe launch, and mountain climbing.
Crawling Valley Reservoir Campground
The Crawling Valley Campground began in 1983, providing a possibility to benefit from the water actions that the reservoir offers for. Sitting at 16 km lengthy and a pair of km throughout, with a most depth of 52 ft, boating, swimming, and fishing are large attracts; species of fish equivalent to trout, pike, and walleye make this a primary fishing spot for campers trying to eat what they catch.
The campground has a big sandy seashore space and swimming space. And facilities close by embody a phenomenal adjoining marina, playground, bathe services, and a store for any issues chances are you’ll want throughout a keep.
Issues to See and Do at Lake Newell and within the Brooks Area
Lake Newell is among the largest man-made lakes in Alberta. The lake can be one of many warmest within the province making it supreme for seashore days and water actions like swimming, paddling, crusing, fishing, and a lot extra.
There are a number of nice choices to entry the lake – by way of non-public entry and a stunning provincial park. Whether or not you’re tenting, searching for an amazing day-use space/seashore, or in want of a ship launch, there are a number of places excellent for enjoyable on the lake!
Kinbrook Island Provincial Park
This fashionable provincial park gives an amazing seashore and in depth day-use space with fireplace pits, BBQs, and picnic tables. There’s additionally an abundance of wetlands within the space which creates nice alternatives to see birds and wildlife. Yr-round tenting is on the market in Kinbrook Island Provincial Park (nearly 200 websites, and 29 in winter) in addition to a ship launch. With all of those facilities, it’s no marvel why locals and vacationers alike flock to the park to entry Lake Newell.
Fishing is a well-liked pastime within the space. Anglers can count on to catch northern pike and lake whitefish in many of the bigger our bodies of water, with walleye being stocked in plenty of the world reservoirs and making it one of the crucial fashionable species caught.
A few of the fashionable fishing spots past Lake Newell are Crawling Valley Reservoir, Rolling Hills Reservoir, and Tilley B Reservoir. The realm rivers additionally present fishing alternatives with the Bow River producing catches of northern pike, walleye, whitefish, and a few trout and sturgeon.
Don’t have your individual boat however nonetheless need to get out on the water to fish? E book at tour with the parents at Trebled Life Fishing and reel within the large one!
Canoeing / Paddle Boarding / Boating
Lake Newell Resort
Lake Newell Resort is a shoreside neighborhood, full of the entire facilities wanted to reap the benefits of this lovely lake. Make the most of the incredible alternative for waterskiing, canoeing, kayaking and SUP’ing.
Its extra notable characteristic alongside its public seashore and day use space is the general public marina which is nice for launching something from a pontoon to a canoe (convey your individual vessel). Additionally notice that that is the situation of the lake’s solely refueling station.
Rolling Hills Reservoir
Rolling Hills Reservoir is a separate physique of water from Lake Newell. It’s each a tenting and seashore vacation spot (and sure a bit quieter than the extra fashionable Lake Newell) and may be very fashionable with households in the summertime. That is one other nice seashore for paddle boarding, canoeing, kayaking, or simply having a lazy float! Your canines will likely be blissful you selected to spend at the present time right here too as a bit of their seashore is canine pleasant.
Hen watching, or birding, is quick turning into a very talked-about pastime within the Brooks Area. There are a couple of locations to take action together with the Tilley space, Lake Newell and Kitsum reservoirs, and Dinosaur Provincial Park. Every offers distinctive viewpoints of sure species interested in the habitats.
Many species of birds are drawn to those areas both as staging areas for shorebirds throughout migration equivalent to black-bellied plovers, western grebes, and waterfowl may be seen within the spring and fall. Even populations of endangered and weak species nonetheless frequent these areas with sightings of long-billed curlew and burrowing owl. When visiting, maintain your eyes open to hopefully catch a glimpse!
Marvel on the Brooks Aqueduct
What’s an aqueduct, you ask? Basically it’s an overland bridge to move water, whose fundamental construction truly dates again to historic Roman instances. The Brooks Aqueduct doesn’t return fairly that far, after all, however was inbuilt 1912. When you see this unbelievable, monumental construction you will notice why it was a feat of engineering whose use spanned hundreds of years. Not solely that, however it’s a lovely location for a picnic and scenic stroll and to study extra about this Nationwide and Provincial historic website.
The Brooks Aqueduct is only a quick drive south of Brooks. There isn’t a admission charge to this website and is all the time open to the general public for a self-guided expertise.
Go Beneath (sure, UNDER!) the Bassano Dam
Not solely is the dam a phenomenal viewpoint it’s a deeply essential construction for the entire farmers and communities within the space. The EID (Jap Irrigation District) gives a tour of the Bassano Dam that’s totally fascinating.
Find out about how water is distributed within the space, how know-how and innovation is altering, how the world makes use of water and you may even expertise the dam from beneath! The tour may be very distinctive and is free to e-book by contacting the EID. The dam has a profound impact on so many different issues we visited within the space together with the Aqueduct, lakes, and even the native distillery. (You’ll be an irrigation professional by the top of the tour!)
Areas of the dam are all the time open to the general public; you possibly can stroll or drive throughout anytime and there are picnic tables out there close to the point of view.
Expertise Dinosaur Provincial Park
Only a 30-minute drive northeast of Brooks, the world-famous Dinosaur Provincial Park is one among Alberta’s 6 UNESCO World Heritage websites. It attained the designation in 1979 as a result of it has such various plant and animal life but additionally as a result of “it comprises a few of the most essential fossil specimens found from the “Age of Dinosaurs” (from the UNESCO web site).
If the placing look of the Badlands in Alberta wasn’t already sufficient of a motive to go to, the park gives in depth mountain climbing trails, guided excursions, glamping, and a museum-quality customer heart.
Some highlights of the park embody an enormous public entry space the place you possibly can hike all around the hills and hoodoos. This space truly has a bone mattress the place you will have an opportunity to search out actual fossils* if you’re expert sufficient to determine them. There are additionally fossil enclosures that mean you can see dinosaurs the place and the way they had been truly discovered.
The guided excursions enable for much more memorable experiences. Partake within the “Fossil Finders” tour and discover ways to determine fossils and discover extra of the pure protect or the “Centrosaurus Bonebed Hike” the place you get to discover a former dig that comprises bones from lots of of dinosaurs.
* Please depart any fossils precisely the place they’re discovered. For extra data on how one can assist do your half to protect the park throughout your keep, cease on the customer heart.
Take pleasure in Craft Beer and Spirits
Piston Broke Brewing
Piston Broke Brewing is Brooks’ first craft brewery and has grown to be a pillar of the neighborhood. The brewery options a number of award-winning beers, good eats, and artistic beer cocktails. Try their occasions web page on their web site for comedy nights, stay music, and far more!
One other standout characteristic of the brewery is its wonderful patio that can be dog-friendly.
Pivot Spirits is the world’s first and solely “seed to sip” distillery. The grains used of their spirits are farmed within the areas surrounding the distillery and the entire botanicals and taste infusions are sourced regionally. Take a tour across the farm and distillery by hay trip and see the method from seed to the completed product.
Tastings and off-sales can be found Tuesday through Sunday or pair your spirit or cocktails with a home made pizza Friday through Sunday. Verify their occasions web page for stay music and different occasions.
Different Enjoyable for the Household
White Barn Enjoyable Farm
White Barn Enjoyable Farm is a family-run farm that has acres of cuteness and is stuffed with enjoyable for all ages!
The interactive farm lets you pet and feed an enormous number of animals like emus, alpacas, Tibetan yaks, and even a camel. Its assortment of critters is actually spectacular and even features a uncommon white buffalo. Rise up shut to those wonderful animals and study what makes them so distinctive. You’ll be able to go to the farm by appointment which may be booked via their web site.
Brooks Corn Maze
The Brooks Corn Maze is open from mid-August till late October and options so many extra actions than simply the corn maze. You might be certain to have a full day of enjoyable with the magnetic fish pond, The Human Hamster, Pasture Putt Golf, and The Corny Sandbox.
Not solely does the Brooks Corn Maze have a bunch of actions to get pleasure from, however in addition they have a u-pick raspberry area sometimes beginning in early July. Raspberries can be found till late August or till the primary frost. Munch on a 4-litre pail of your hard-picked earnings for $20 or $18 if you happen to convey your individual pail.
Brooks U-Choose is positioned 5 minutes from Brooks on Cassils Street, simply earlier than Hwy 36 on the south aspect. They’re open 8 am – 5 pm every day for guests to choose their hearts out from a number of contemporary natural greens together with a wide range of melons, tomatoes, potatoes, zucchini, squash, scorching peppers, eggplant, cucumber, corn, inexperienced beans, onions, carrots, and extra!
Duffy’s Enjoyable Centre
Duffy’s Enjoyable Centre gives nice indoor leisure! Take pleasure in an enormous number of arcade video games out of your basic carnival-style video games to spectacular interactive video game-style video games. You may as well discover enjoyable truthful treats right here like comfortable pretzels, deep-fried pickles, and delectable mini donuts.
The place to Eat in Brooks
Wasana is a Brooks establishment! The proprietor Kham serves wonderful Thai and Southeast Asian Delicacies. The meals is genuine and scrumptious so it’s no marvel this restaurant has been in operation for many years. The environment and repair are pleasant and are certain to have you ever feeling proper at residence.
Indian Pan Flame
Indian Pan Flame is regionally owned and gives a mix of up to date and conventional Indian flavors. The meals is bursting with colour, taste, and fantastically aromatic as you’ll come to count on from high-quality Indian delicacies. You’ll be able to even customise the warmth degree to your choice. This restaurant boasts a few of the finest Indian meals in Alberta, however there is just one method to know for sure – you’ll need to strive it for your self!
The Steaming Cup
Discovering a neighborhood espresso store is all the time a should when exploring a brand new space and in Brooks, deal with your self at The Steaming Cup. It has a comfortable environment and gives an enormous number of specialty coffees, teas, smoothies, and even bubble tea! The Steaming Cup can be proud to characteristic merchandise from native distributors and artists.
Dwelling Time BBQ is a Texas-style wood-fired BBQ. Take pleasure in conventional BBQ meat platters (like brisket or ribs), accompanied by basic sides like coleslaw or their house-baked bread. In case you are feeling adventurous strive a Canadian tackle Texas BBQ with the Brisket Poutine – belief us, you received’t be upset.
Connected to the restaurant is HomeTime Bakery. The entire care and time it takes to prepare dinner good BBQ additionally interprets to their baked items on show within the bakery – making one of many candy treats the right finale to your meal.
Don’t Miss Visiting Lake Newell and the Brooks Area in Alberta!
The Brooks Area in southeastern Alberta is an interesting mashup of historical past, dinosaurs, lovely water, and culinary delights. This usually missed space is a phenomenal place to attach with nature and household, and to get again to the roots of what issues most in life.