Shoal Lake is a small community located in southwestern Manitoba, on the Yellowhead Route (not to be confused with Shoal Lake on the Ontario-Manitoba border)
The Shoal Lake area has been inhabited by Indigenous peoples for thousands of years and the Anishinaabe (Ojibwe) people who live in the region today have a long history in the area.
The community was established in 1884, and moved to its current location at the lake’s north side in 1885 to during the construction of the Manitoba & Northwestern Railroad (now CPR) through the area, leading to the establishment of several communities, including Shoal Lake. The community was named after the lake it is situated on.
The first Europen settlers (mostly of f British and Irish descent) arrived in Shoal Lake around 1881, attracted by the promise of cheap land and the opportunity to farm. In 1883, the first post office was established in Shoal Lake, and by the early 1900s, the community had several businesses, including a general store, a blacksmith shop, and a hotel. The community also had a school, several churches, and a local newspaper, the Shoal Lake Star.
During World War II, Shoal Lake was home to an air force training base, known as No. 2 Air Observer School, which operated from 1940 to 1944 and trained thousands of air observers for the bomber and fighter squadrons in the European front.
Today, Shoal Lake is a small community with a population of around 500 people. Agriculture and forestry are the main industries in the area, and the community also serves as a popular destination for outdoor recreation.
Shoal Lake Attractions
9 km SW of the town of Shoal Lake, via Highway 21 and MB-944
docks and a beach for community recreation.