The Assiniboine River Route #5 / Tressbank to Stockton Ferry



Launch : Drive east to Shilo and south to the new Treesbank Bridge on Road #340.

Landing : Find Stockton, north of Highway #2, between Wawanesa and Glenboro. Follow signs north of town to find the Ferry Site.

Distance : 30 km

Time : 5 - 8 Hours

See Google Earth View



Souris Mouth

This stretch takes you a little farther from signs of civilization. For long stretches you won't hear a motor vehicle. Sheltered within high banks, you see the river much as it was a hundred years ago. The river here offers variety, and some fast water, but it's a relaxing trip. This trip also can be done in two stretches. If you just want a short trip (a few kilometres), stop at the old Treesbank Ferry site. A bit farther downstream you will pass the mouth of the Souris River. There are plenty of spots for riverbank camping or picnics.

The Souris enters the Assiniboine east of Treesbank. There is a landing / camping spot in the Wildlife Management Area on the north side, just past the mouth of the Souris.





Historical Notes

The Treesbank Ferry was operational until the 1980's when the bridge was constructed over Highway #340. A cairn marks the site.

The Treesbank area was home to the Criddle family. Percy Criddle settled three miles north of the ferry site in 1882. He brought with him his wife and their four children, as well his former mistress, Elise Vane, and her / their four children. Today their graves rest in a small family plot hidden among the evergreens on the abandoned farm site. (Now Criddle / Vane Provincial Park) 

Percy was a well educated English gentleman whose entire family carried on his interest in the sciences, specifically the local flora and fauna. While trying (and at times failing) to provide for his family as a farmer, he spent his spare time in his pastimes which included, writing, composing music, playing the organ, astronomy, cricket, tennis, medicine, local government, and occasionally, keeping an eye on the neigborhood's pretty young ladies.

The Criddle and Vane families.

He strongly advocated that a bridge be built over the Assiniboine, but it took 80 years for the Highways Department to concur. A book by his granddaughter entitled "Criddle-De-Diddle-ensis" is a frank look at the man an his remarkable family. A more recent volume, "For Elise" by Elise Vane's great-grandaughter tells the story from that family's perspective.

The area near the mouth of the Souris river was an important junction. Peter Fidler, who at one time managed Brandon House, reported in 1822 that there was an "abundance of sturgeon" in the Souris River at it's mouth. (p.79 Clarke)

Near the end of the 19th century a post office was located the south west corner of the junction of the Souris and the Assiniboine called Souris Mouth.  The Two Rivers School and Sidney Upper's store were on the north side of the Assinibline.

The Stockton Ferry is the last operational ferry in southern Manitoba. Village of Old Stockton was moved to it's present location in 1891 because no rail line had been built to it's original location. It is about a mile south of the river and the Brandon Sun reported that "the stream at this point has considerable fall: the banks are also favourable for building a water power plant. It is one of the best locations for a grist mill in Manitoba..." Such predictions were typical of the optimism of the times.



Google Earth View