Wanham Provincial Grazing Reserve

Established: 1960
Area: 18,735 acres
Terrain: Rolling landscape is dotted with small sloughs and patches of muskeg
Vegetation: Aspen, willow, tame pasture
Region: Dry mixedwood natural subregion
Nearby municipalities: 40 km northeast of Rycroft
Irrigation sources: Nil
Livestock management: Wanham Grazing Association
Maintains the fences, dugouts, corrals and the buildings located at the headquarters
Grazing season: Mid-May to mid-October
Cattle: Cow-calf and heifers
Capacity: 13,000 AUMs
Wildlife and game: Elk, moose, deer, black bears, coyotes and song birds
Recreational activities: Hunting
Trail riding
Industrial activities: Oil and gas activity and developments

Veterans of the Second World War originally homesteaded most of the area northeast of Rycroft from 1948 to 1951. However, a combination of low rainfall and poor access caused most of them to abandon their homesteads. By 1960, the Alberta Government bought out the few remaining farmers and established the Wanham Provincial Grazing Reserve. Because large areas of homesteads were already cultivated and seeded to forage, it was possible to take cattle to the reserve immediately.

Provincial Grazing Reserves are popular recreational sites for the general public. Following is a list of conditions that need to be adhered to when recreating on the Wanham Provincial Grazing Reserve.

Regulatory Conditions of Recreational Access

Under Sections 9(3) and 9(4) of the Recreational Access Regulation, recreational users must:

  • Not litter;
  • Have direct control of any animal brought onto the agricultural disposition land;
  • Not park vehicles so that they block an approach to land;
  • Not enter or use any building or improvement on the disposition;
  • Not cause any damage to the agricultural disposition land or the property of the disposition holder;
  • Leave gates and other property as they were found;
  • Comply with an applicable recreational management plan, if any; and
  • Comply with the restrictions, prohibitions, terms and conditions, if any, imposed by the Local Settlement Officer, or Director.

Specific Access Conditions for this Disposition

  • No access is allowed into pastures where livestock are present, but foot access is permitted in pastures without cattle.
  • Motorized vehicles are restricted to developed roads and designated access trails.
  • Do not access trails or non-gravelled roads when wet and/or when rutting can occur.
  • Camping is allowed only with the written permission of the Grazing Reserve office.
  • Organized recreational groups must obtain a Letter of Authority from the Grazing Reserve office prior to undertaking their activity.
  • No fires are permitted without written permission of the Grazing Reserve office.
  • Dogs are to be on a leash when entering the Grazing Reserve area between May 1 and November 15.

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Updated: Sep 17, 2015