South of the St. Barbe Baker Forest in the Rural Municipality of Corman Park lies Chappell Marsh, part of the West Swale that runs from the North Saskatchewan River near Langham to the South Saskatchewan River at Saskatoon’s south border near Yorath Island.
Open since 2011, this Duck Unlimited Canada 60 hectare (148-acre) conservation area offers five groomed trails for visitors to learn and enjoy prairie wetland habitat. The site welcomes school students and the general public.
The West Swale was originally called the Yorath Island Glacial Spillway. This Pleistocene Era spillway was once a river connecting the glacial North Saskatchewan River valley and glacial Rice Lake with South Saskatchewan Glacial Lake. Today, this span of land is still conducting water through above-ground wetlands, and underground water springs and channels between the North Saskatchewan River and the South Saskatchewan River.
Chappell Marsh is home to a wealth of ducks, bugs, birds, amphibians, reptiles and mammals. It encompasses prairie, parkland and marsh. Chappell Marsh Conservation Area offers a chance to embrace nature after a short drive out of town on Valley Road. Follow the Cedar Villa sign just past the Civic Operations Centre.