Manitobans will be able to start making reservations for campgrounds, yurts, cabins and group areas in provincial parks starting Monday, and the province has made some changes to this year’s reservation system.

Earlier in the week, Environment, Climate and Parks Minister Jeff Wharton announced that this year’s system includes staggered launch dates and technical improvements.

“Our government understands that in previous years individuals have had issues with the reservation system,” he said.

“We recognize that having easy and accessible operations at the parks reservation service is an important part of the overall experience.”

The province is working to implement a new system by 2023, but has made some technical improvements to the existing system to ensure users have a better experience this year.

Improvements this year include adding computing resources to increase system performance, increasing queue stability and reducing the risk of people losing their place in the queue, and the provision of immediate confirmations at the time of booking via web page messaging and confirmation email.

Manitoba has also scheduled additional launch days to spread out the number of people using the system at a time. This year, instead of three launch days, initial bookings will be spread over five days.

These five phases are:

  • April 4 at 7 a.m., opening of reservations for cabins, yurts and group areas;
  • April 6 at 7 a.m., camping reservations open for Birds Hill, Falcon Beach, Falcon Lakeshore and West Hawk Lake;
  • April 8 at 7:00 a.m. opening of camping reservations for parks in the western and northern regions, including Asessippi, Bakers Narrows, Clearwater Lake, Duck Mountain, Manipogo, Paint Lake, Rainbow Beach, Rivers, Spruce Woods, Turtle Mountain, William Lake and Wekusko Falls;
  • On April 11 at 7 a.m., camping reservations open for Grand Beach, Nopiming, and all remaining White Shell campgrounds, including Caddy Lake, Big Whiteshell, Brereton Lake, Nutimik Lake, Opapiskaw, Otter Falls, Betula Lake, and White Lake; and
  • On April 13 at 7 a.m., reservations open for the remaining locations such as Birch Point, Camp Morton, Hecla, Hnausa Beach, Lundar Beach, Moose Lake, St. Malo, Stephenfield, Watchorn and Winnipeg Beach.

Manitoba has reduced the maximum length of stay in a cabin or yurt to seven nights. Cabins, yurts and group use areas are limited to two reservations per session on opening day, while campsites are still limited to three reservations per session on opening days.

The province is advising people that despite this year’s changes, people may still experience waits and delays.

To accommodate high demand on April 4, Manitoba is opening online and call center services at 7 a.m. passwords beforehand.

The province notes that online and call center reservations are preferred, but Manitobans can make walk-in reservations and payment arrangements in person at 200 Saulteaux Cres. in Winnipeg Monday to Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. starting April 4.