These Beautiful Old Grain Elevators Will Take You Back to the Prairies
Although they're an increasingly rare sight on the Prairie landscape, these soaring structures evoke the heartland's rich agricultural history.
“On a recent trip across the country from Ontario, we travelled through the Rockies and into the prairies just before harvest season began,” writes Elaine Howard. “It was a welcoming site to see the famous grain storage elevators, a signature on the prairies. Our vast land that stretched for miles and miles as far as the eye could see… We loved seeing the beautiful sights our country has to offer.” Here, in Moosomin, Saskatchewan, the elevator sits right on the tracks, where it would unload grain for transport by train.
A Prairie tour of grain elevators reveals some wonderfully quirky town names, as Julia Saurazas captured here in Elbow, Saskatchewan.
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Stony Beach, Saskatchewan
Although many grain elevators on the Prairies are showing their age, this specimen at Stony Beach is remarkably well preserved. If it wasn’t for the power lines in the distance, you might almost think Gloria Pawliuk’s gorgeous shot was from the archives.
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“I couldn’t get enough of the grain elevators and trains scenes on our June trip through Saskatchewan,” writes Listowel, Ontario’s Rhonda Beirnes. We can’t get enough of them either, Rhonda—thank you for sharing your vacation snaps!
Fill ‘er up, please! Frank Koenig captured this vintage-look gas pump and actual vintage truck while driving through Consul, Saskatchewan. The town’s massive grain elevator looms in the background, complete with parked rail cars.
Grain elevator fans take note: The town of Mossleigh, Alberta is home to no fewer than three. That’s not the only sight worth seeing, though, as photographer Frank Koenig discovered. “Behind the elevators, the land seems to go on forever,” he writes.
“A lone prairie grain elevator reaching for the big Alberta sky,” writes photographer Janice Storch. “This beautiful old sentinel stands proudly in the small southern Alberta hamlet of Brant.”
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“There’s not too many of these old grain elevators across the prairies anymore,” notes Dan Wever of Grande Prairie, Alberta.”They are being replaced by massive cement elevators which are much more efficient these days.” Sadly, they’re nowhere near as charming!
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Given the lush green fields surrounding Rowley’s impressive elevators, it’s hard to believe the badlands of Drumheller are just a half-hour drive away.
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As farming practices evolved over the years, these towering structures often fell into disuse—and disrepair. This dilapidated grain elevator is the signpost for Dorothy, Alberta—a little pioneer hamlet with a population that never exceeded 100, even at its peak.
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