Rural exploration is extremely common on the prairies because of the spread out population. There are two types of exploration, rural and urban. Rural exploration is the exploration of areas that are not cities and towns. On the prairies it may include abandoned farmhouses, abandoned towns, rural and abandoned churches and other items like abandoned vehicles, barns, etc.
People always ask me how I find all the places I have visited, so here are 6 easy steps to get you started. To find interesting places you need to get off the pavement and drive the back roads. You can do all the research possible and you still won't know what's out there until you start driving. I have been surprised many times.
Also, know that you may find nothing, very little or lots on a trip. That's all part of the hobby.
1. Choose an area.
Depending on what you are looking for, it is best to do some research before hand. If you want farmhouses, you can pick anywhere in the province. If you want something more specific its best to research those areas before you head out. An example would be, certain areas are more predominate for Ukrainian churches or stone houses.
2. Map it out.
When I first started exploring, I used paper maps, historic books and other resources. Today there is a wide variety of resources including facebook pages, google maps, mapping apps, websites and historical sites. I always suggest picking an app or an online source and mark out all the points you want to visit. Stick with one application as its easier to keep track of what you visit.
3. Pack your bag.
Always bring your camera, clothing for all weather, good shoes/boots, flashlight and snacks. It's always important to have a first aid kit as well as some safety gear (masks, rope, gloves, etc.). Have enough extra stuff to be covered for a couple days in case something happens to your vehicle or the weather changes.
4. Hit the road!
If you want to find interesting things in this province its best to get off the pavement and hit the back roads. If you have a destination in mind, take the back roads to it rather then the highway. Pavement usually doesn't lead to interesting sites in rural areas.
5. Don't forget to read the signs.
While out on the grids, be sure to watch for signs (or lack of). This may include uncontrolled intersections and railway tracks, private property / no trespassing signs and unmarked dangers like wells. There are laws in place now for trespassing so its best to get permission.
6. Follow the rules
Take nothing but pictures.
Leave nothing but footprints.
Break nothing but silence.