Saturday 30 April 2022


Anyone who's driven through Medicine Hat, Alberta will recognize the Saamis Teepee.

It was originally built for the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary...three years later it found a permanent home in Medicine Hat.  The teepee is about 215 feet tall with a diameter of 160 feet.  Definitely the city's most prominent landmark.

- Michael Truman

Friday 29 April 2022

Vanishing sentinels

Elevator at Conquest, Saskatchewan

Monday 25 April 2022

Monday has come around again

Last week at the beginning of the week I got an unexpected message from a friend on mine that I had not seen for about five years or more. To be honest I cannot remember the last time we met in person. We went to high school together, he attended university and got a degree, then moved overseas. He comes to the USA and Canada from time to time. He mentioned he was going to be in Calgary and if we could meet up. I said I would make the trip.

Last Wednesday brakes were done on my vehicle. Drove to the shop during lunch last Friday to get the wheels retorqued. In the parking lot of the shop my vehicle decided to leak power steering fluid all over the pavement. I asked them when they could take a look at it and I was told next Tuesday, they were short staffed currently busy. I left them the key, said I would make do in the meantime, and caught a ride to my workplace.

Later that afternoon close to 4:00pm I got a call. It was fixed. They took a quick look at it and found it was something simple.  Power steering fluid was topped up and I was good to go. I picked it up and off to Calgary after work. Travel time is at least two and a half hours.

I stayed at my sister's place that night, visited my friend the next day. He is doing well. In the interim there was a phone call from mom, I usually visit her on weekends. Drove over three hours from Calgary to visit home and got to her place after seven on Saturday night.

Stayed overnight at mom's. Got the usual mom-related errands completed. Mom is doing fine. Arrived home late afternoon, travel time a little over an hour. Today I am tired. There may not be posts for a few days.

Sunday 24 April 2022

Conquest, Saskatchewan fire truck

I took a bit of a detour through Conquest, an interesting name for a town. More there than I thought. There is C.F.D. on the side which I would guess stands for Conquest Fire Department. It looks like it is still being used for something.

Saturday 23 April 2022

East of Wilkie, Saskatchewan

I have posted it before and I will post it again whenever I drive past it. It is a abandoned catalogue house sitting in a field. I like stopping by and seeing it when I am in the area.

Friday 22 April 2022

51.368429, -107.782823

Glamis, Saskatchewan is a ghost town. A little southeast of Glamis is this grain elevator in the middle of a field. Literally in the middle of large field with nothing around it. I tried to find some information on it on the internet but was unsuccessful.

There is a trail leading off the gravel road across the field that goes by it. I did not try the trail, that will have to wait for warmer days and drier roads. The close up shot was near the extreme range of my telephoto lens. 

Thursday 21 April 2022

Swanson School 1916 - 1971

Ran across this by chance. This is in Swanson, Saskatchewan which is basically a ghost town. I have never seen an old school of this design. It has a brick exterior, a bell tower, and a large classroom on each floor. 

Wednesday 20 April 2022

McKay School 1888 - 1951

A bit northeast of Whitewood, Saskatchewan. I did not get any closer because trudging over snowbanks wears thin quickly.

Tuesday 19 April 2022

They changed the potatoes

Last weekend on Saturday I drove to Saskatoon for ribs. My other weekend plans were not working out so I thought I might as well get ribs.

When you order that from the menu you get ribs, green beans, mashed potatoes, and cornbread. The ribs were worth the trip, I should have ordered more. They changed the mashed potatoes. I do not know what they did to them but they are not the same. No cornbread either. It was replaced by some dark muffin type of thing. They need to bring the cornbread back. I do not know what they pan fry the green beans in but they were the same and just as good as I remember.

Personally I like my potatoes baked, fried, or boiled. I do not mind mashed but they are not my first choice. Scalloped potatoes are a crime against potatoes. Their potatoes were good mashed potatoes, not good enough this trip. If I go back and they are still doing this to the potatoes I might have to drop them.

Happy barn

I made a detour to Duperow, Saskatchewan on my way home on a recent trip to Saskatoon. I had never been down that particular road. I quickly found there was nothing of interest for me except a ways off the road in a farmyard was this barn which appealed to me.

By the way, there is not much at Duperow.

Monday 18 April 2022

Monday church photo

St. John's Lutheran Church north of Regina, Saskatchewan.

Sunday 17 April 2022

It is salmon, do not call it pink.

I stopped at a gas station in Oyen, Alberta today for coffee and gas. I noticed this car in the parking lot as it was not there a few minutes earlier. Two older men just came inside and I asked them if this was their car. They said it was and the first thing they did was set me straight on the colour. It is a Nash Metropolitan. I forgot to ask the year. They offered to take me for a rid in it. I was on my way home and declined but I am kicking myself for not taking them up on it.

They have been restoring it. Upon closer inspection there are a few minor wrinkles in the body and it does need to be repainted. I think they should change the colour.

Sometimes my planning is not the best . . .

Took a few days off from doing much this weekend and discovered I forgot to set up some posts for the weekend.

I will have to schedule some content. 

Friday 15 April 2022

Napinka, Manitoba

Very small town Manitoba. The few streets had lots of soft snow and some mud when I was there a few weeks ago. I did manage to get the grain elevators which is why I was here.

Wednesday 13 April 2022

Cameron Consolidated School


This lovely old school is located on highway 10 about 5 km northwest of Minnedosa. This school was closed in 1966. More information is available here.

Steve Boyko

Tuesday 12 April 2022


These bales couldn't be in a nicer setting. Spotted this past fall near Slawa, Alberta.

- Michael Truman

Monday 11 April 2022

St. George’s Anglican Church at Westbourne

We were en route to Riding Mountain National Park when we stopped briefly in the small town of Westbourne, Manitoba. This lovely old church is the St. George's Anglican Church, built in 1929.

Sunday 10 April 2022

In search of . . .

Lately my usual routine is to visit mom on Friday nights and stay overnight. When I get outside town limits I stop and phone and ask if there is anything in particular she wants for dinner. Wendy's won out and I picked up a couple of items at the grocery store that I knew she needed. Mom had a stroke in 2019 and she gave up her car and license so I run her most of her errands for her. She has some home care and a housekeeper that drops in once a week.

The next day mom mentioned that the stopper for her kitchen sink was no longer stopping water from draining. I went out to get breakfast, mom likes the fast food breakfast on an English muffin so that has become our thing. On the way to get it I stopped at the hardware store to get the following:

My mistake was thinking these things were fairly universal so I did not take it with me. When I dropped into the hardware so I found out they were not universal. After breakfast I took the stopper from mom's and went back to look for a match. They did not have one there but I bought one I thought was close enough. I was wrong. When I got back it was just slightly less in diameter. You would think this would be a easy problem to fix.

Back to the hardware store and returned it. This was starting to irritate me. There was only one other store that carried stuff like this where mom lives. They had two different ones. I bought both because I could not see well enough through the plastic wrap to see if either were exactly what I needed. Got back to mom's and the the first one was not a fit. The second one did. I have had an easier time looking after her taxes and bill payments.

Saturday 9 April 2022

Bede School

In southwestern Manitoba. If you look up Bede, Manitoba there is a cemetery and a former school. The school looks like there is some kind of business run out of it during the summer.

Friday 8 April 2022

Tilson, Manitoba elevators

Not much happening in Tilson and not a lot of people either. They do have a couple of grain elevators.

Wednesday 6 April 2022

No longer the oldest elevator in Canada

On March 19, 2022 I visited Elva, Manitoba to see the oldest grain elevator in Canada and posted it. On Facebook Troy Angus, who bought it, posted its demise. It is posted in several places so I thought I would share it. This is what he wrote:

"Canada's oldest wooden grain elevator burnt to the ground yesterday (April 5, 2022), fortunately, no loss of life or equipment resulted from this freak accident. Unfortunately, the fire claimed The Lake of the Woods elevator dating back to September 1897. The neighboring United Grain Growers elevator (1916) was untouched by the fire.
For those of you that may not be aware, The Den Authentic Barnwood (my business) purchased both elevators located in Elva, MB in December of 2021 with the purpose of intercepting a certain reality of traditional demolition. We undertook this project on our own initiative with the purpose of responsibly managing what would otherwise be considered rural wood waste.
Our goal was, and still is, to reclaim the valuable antique wood, hardware, and historic value of these elevators to share with as many people across Canada as possible, piece by piece. Prior to the destructive fire, we were able to reclaim 90% of the antique tin that skirted the iconic elevator including all hardware, posters, leg wood/cups, the complete drive shed, and parts of the original office. Most of this antique material has been shipped across North America as a way to share the story of our Prairie heritage.
If you would like to learn more about our project the link below will take you to the video collection of our experience step by step.

How did the fire start? Let me explain . . .

The fire started along the roofline of the elevator, approximately 40 feet from ground level and our crew was present from the onset. Although we are reclaiming as much wood as possible the balance (approximately 20%) of rotten wood was being disposed of by a deliberately controlled burn in the low-lying water logged slough on the property.
During the last hour of our workday, the light wind which blew all day out of the south switched directions from the East. A small ember floated upwards towards the elevator and was sucked into a hole the size of a football, igniting the 125-year-old wood virtually on contact.
Keep in mind that this event unfolded in under 10 minutes, and in 1 hour the complete structure was gone. We acted fast and according to the time-stamped photos we were able to knock the elevator to the ground within 7 minutes saving the potential damage to nearby hydro lines and railway tracks. This quick action combined with teamwork was instrumental in controlling the situation before it potentially got out of control.
The long and the short is that our project will move forward as planned with our focus now on saving as much wood and hardware from the UGG elevator. We will continue to build our project video collection and invite you to share our experience.
I would like to thank the EMS services for their quick response to the fire which includes the Melita Fire Department, ambulance, and RCMP. Although we had the fire under control by the time they arrived, it was reassuring to have them on the scene just in case. The major factor that reduced the potential for a major grass fire was the wet spring ground/grass and rain/sleet weather during the day.
Thank you for taking the time to read this post."

Saskatchewan has more interesting stuff

I like to take road trips into Saskatchewan because they have more interesting things to see in terms of old buildings than what you find in Alberta. This is an old school near Edgeley, Saskatchewan. Not a lot of buildings of this type in Alberta.

No clue what school it is. It is long abandoned and there is a farm not far from it. The roof is fairly new so someone is trying to preserve it. I got a few quick shots from a damp gravel road.

Tuesday 5 April 2022

Encounters of the moose kind

Last Saturday I was on my way home from visiting mom. I thought I would take a detour and drop by the cemetery where a friend of mine resides. I spotted a moose about here: 53.211670, -114.632891

The moose was not very big and it was damn hard to get a photo because it was in the trees most of the time. After spending some time staring at me it decided to wander off. This was the best shot out of several attempts and I got it at the extreme range of my telephoto lens. 

Incidentally I spotted a moose Friday, this one Saturday, and another on Sunday. I was only able to get a photo of this one.

Monday 4 April 2022

Spotted near James River Bridge, Alberta

I wish I spotted this before last Christmas.

Monday church post

Stone church southeast of Regina, Saskatchewan.

Sunday 3 April 2022

Out standing in its field

Former Manitoba Grain Pool Elevator at what once was Dalny, Manitoba. The rail line was abandoned and removed years ago. It is privately owned.

Saturday 2 April 2022

Stained Glass Farm Sign

Not something you see everyday.  

Spotted near Aquadell, Saskatchewan.

- Michael Truman

Friday 1 April 2022

Soon to be the formerly oldest grain elevator in Canada

I had wanted to go to Elva, Manitoba for a couple of years to see the oldest grain elevator in Canada. It was built by the Lake of The Woods Milling Company in 1897 and long abandoned. Elva, Manitoba these days is a small place. There are two elevators there.

According to various online stories Troy Angus bought the elevators in Elva, Manitoba. His company plans to dismantle the elevator and reclaim the lumber and other assorted elevator parts. The elevator cannot be saved, there has been too much neglect over too much time. Actually neither can be saved. A friend of mine visited the elevator a little over a month earlier and has a few pieces of it for his home. Another person I know who set up a non-profit that bought an elevator in Wrentham, Alberta is using some pieces to restore their elevator. There are some YouTube videos showing the work they are doing. Once Troy has demolished the oldest elevator he is moving on to the other elevator in Elva.

When I got there on March 19, 2022 practically all of the siding was removed from the elevator, the structure is still standing. There was a crew of three working it. They were nice enough to step out of the way to allow me to get a few photos. Apparently they get a fair amount of attention from people like me that drove long distances to see it.

The oldest elevator in Canada. It did have Lake of the Woods Milling Co on the side.