Pinawa is a small town located close to the eastern edge of the Canadian Prairie province of Manitoba, near Whiteshell Provincial Park. It is a peaceful place surrounded by stunning natural beauty including thick evergreen and birch tree forests and lakes and rivers. Located only an hour and a half east of Winnipeg, this town is the perfect place to take a day trip. Pinawa is a slightly off-the-beaten-path hidden gem in Manitoba that is worth exploring to discover and appreciate the natural beauty!
The Old Pinawa Dam was originally constructed in 1906 to generate power for the city of Winnipeg to keep up with the residential and commercial demand, as the city was rapidly growing. It was Manitoba’s first hydro-electric generating station. It was shut down in 1951, as a new dam had been built in the nearby town of Seven Sisters. When the dam stopped generating power, it was abandoned. Now, people come to the area to explore the ruins of this old dam.
The Pinawa Suspension Bridge is a 54-metre long and 1-metre wide swinging bridge that was completed in 1998 and crosses the Pinawa Channel. Gorgeous vegetation and thick forests can be found on both sides of the bridge with a network of hiking trails as well.
Two weekends ago, I spent a couple of days in Pinawa for a retreat with some other young adults and friends from the church that I attend. It was an amazing weekend filled with lots of exploring and outdoor adventures!
Prior to that weekend, I had only visited Pinawa during the summer when all the vegetation was lush and thick. Visiting in the winter was a totally different experience and it was incredible to see how everything looked in the winter, covered in ice and snow.
Here is a collection of some of the photos that I took during my explorations of the old Pinawa Dam, the hiking trails in the town of Pinawa, and the Pinawa Suspension Bridge. I hope this post inspires your future trip to Pinawa to explore everything that it has to offer! Enjoy!
Town of Pinawa
Pinawa is a quiet and pretty town that sits along the river that connects Sylvia Lake with Natalie Lake. Throughout town, there are a few different hiking trails that meander along the water and cut through beautiful terrain and forests. I enjoyed hiking one of the trails called the Ironwood. The scenery was gorgeous!
The Old Pinawa Dam
Exploring the Old Pinawa Dam was amazing! A portion of the dam has a walkway with railings on top and the views of the entire area were incredible from up top. I then spent some time exploring the other side of the dam. There were large rocks which were snow-covered, some small waterfalls and rushing water. I loved climbing around on the ruins of the dam and photographing the natural beauty surrounding the area.
And here are some photos from the beautiful nature around the Pinawa Dam.
Pinawa Suspension Bridge
Before last summer, I had no idea that there was even a suspension bridge in Manitoba and I have lived here my whole life. It was really cool to walk across this bridge as it swung back and forth and bounced up and down, albeit a little bit scary also (the worst case scenario of it breaking was in the back of my mind)!
On both sides of the bridge, there are a loop of hiking trails through the forests, which I plan to check out next summer. The scenery around the bridge was beautiful and I loved photographing it.
Pinawa is the perfect place to explore for the nature lover and outdoor adventurer. There are numerous activities offered like hiking, cross-country skiing, canoeing, swimming, snowmobiling, and more. If you haven’t been to this area yet, I highly recommend checking it out – both during the summer and winter.
Location – Pinawa is located 1.5 hours east of Winnipeg. The Suspension Bridge is situated just off Dorchester Avenue north of the town (here is a map) and the Old Pinawa Dam is situated off Provincial Road 520, also north of the town (check out the map here).
Have you been to Pinawa, Manitoba?
Let me know in the comments below. I would also love to hear your thoughts about this post and the photos.
Thanks for reading!