The Salt Plains

The Salt Plains

The Salt Plains near Fort Smith, Northwest Territories, extend over 200 square kilometres, and are an extremely rare natural feature, and one of the reasons Wood Buffalo National Park was declared a World Heritage Site. Salt bubbles up in springs across the plains, in some places forming mounds up to two metres high. In spring the salt is dispersed across the landscape forming white patterns on the land. The salt is pure table salt, deposited many millions of years ago. The area has a range of unique salt tolerant plant life, and park staff lead tours of the site. In the past, the Roman Catholic Mission and the Hudson's Bay Company harvested the salt for local distribution. Thebacha Trails, by Libby Gunn, provides an introduction to the natural world of Wood Buffalo.