Westlock Travel Guide

Browse 2 travel reviews, travel blogs and 10 travel photos from real travelers to Westlock.

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Kelsey Kelsey

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Westlock Overview

Having just driven from the nearby virtual ghost town of Clyde, Westlock seemed positively metropolitan with it's shops, banks, hospital, RCMP station and all the other usual appurtenances of town living. It even has it's own airport and a tractor museum of all things.

Standing on the junction of Highways 18 and 44 about one hours drive North of the Provincial capital of Edmonton it boasts a population in the region of 5,000 which makes it a big place in a region where we were used to driving through places some of which didn't even have a basic shop in them. It is the administrative centre of the eponymous County surrounding and houses the governmental building for it.

Indigenous people had been in the area for centuries if not millenia and were of the Cree group which seems to predominate in this region. There had been European fur trappers and adventurers here since the mid 18th century but the first European settlement didn't occur until 1902

Tent dwelling as the first settlers did must have been brutally harsh when the mean annual average temperature here at about 2,000 feet is 1.9C. In January the mean is -11.4C which means it must get an awful lot colder than that at times. When we were there in early August it was none too warm, damp and overcast and anything but T-shirt weather for me. Exactly two weeks later the town ended up completely flooded by the worst rains for over 40 years. It is really not my kind of weather so dress / pack accordingly.

The town was originally called Edison and the new name was chosen for no better reason that the two men who owned the land for the proposed settlement were called William Westgate and William Lockhart!

The first grain silo arrived in 1916, the forerunner of the monstrous thing you that dominates the town skyline today and the year Westlock ws incorporeated. It was finally incorporated as a town in 1947 (pop. 854).

There does not appear to be a huge amount to see in Westlock, it seems to be a fairly functional town. Apart from the afore-mentioned Tractor Museum there is a Pioneer Museum which was regrettably shut by the time we got there but it is a pleasant enough place to spend a bit of time and look round.