Paddle Prairie Metis Settlement is the largest and most northerly Métis settlement, located in northwest Alberta along Highway 35, 72 km south of the Town of High Level.
The settlement of approximately 700 people has 429,671 acres of land and is situated between the Peace River and 6th meridian along the 27th baseline. It is adjacent to both Mackenzie County and the County of Northern Lights. Paddle Prairie Metis Settlement has a vast amount of natural resources for local timber harvesting, natural gas production and farming and is populated by a variety of wildlife and different species of boreal vegetation.
The community also utilizes solar power generating units to power several community buildings including a 240-panel install at the water treatment plant and an 80-panel install at the Paddle Prairie Communiplex, which help to offset the community’s energy needs. Other services and facilities available in Paddle Prairie Metis Settlement include the Administrative Office, Library, Seniors Centre, Parent Link, Brighter Futures, Health Clinic and Youth Centre. Paddle Prairie School has approximately 120 students from Carcajou, Keg River and Paddle Prairie. The school is for students ECS to Grade 12 and offers both academic and CTS courses.
Traditional practices such as hunting fishing, trapping, and gathering continue to be practiced by community members on the vast lands of Paddle Prairie Metis Settlement, with hunting being a primary source of food for many families. Recreation activities in the Paddle Prairie Metis Settlement include hockey, baseball and rodeo. Many members have become known for their unique talents and skills, including hunting and fishing, farming, carpentry, sewing, crafts, athletics and musical abilities.
In 2019, the Settlement lost nearly 1/3 of its land area and 15 homes as a result of the devastation incurred from the Chuckegg Creek Wildfire, which it is currently in the process of recovering from. Some members were evacuated for up to 33 days.