The Resort Village of Cochin is nestled between Murray and Jackfish Lakes on Highway 4 North. Its location stimulates the senses through the restful beauty of trees, prairie, hills, song birds, pelicans, crying loons and paddling ducks. A quiet creek connects the two lakes making for a nature lover's paradise. Jackfish Lake was formed by a glacier that left behind "rock island" just off the coast of Martinson's Beach. It is here that you can find an area of the lake covered with birds in the summer and teeming with fish year round.
At one time the Aboriginal people, fur traders, adventurers and missionaries used the trail between the two lakes as a shortcut to the north. The historic Cochin-Green Lake Trail is located 4.5 kms south of Cochin and stretches 150 kms north to the Hudson Bay post at Green Lake. While serving as a travel route for the Fur Trade Industry, it also connected the Cochin Mission to Indian settlements at Birch Lake and Chitek Lake. The North West Mounted Police patrolled the trail extensively during the North-West Resistance and in 1885, the Trail was crossed by troops pursuing rebellious Indian Bands under Big Bear.
Immediately to the north of Cochin are Saulteaux and Moosomin First Nations. Cochin is also surrounded by many family farms and is only a five minute drive from the Battleford's Provincial Park.
The Village of Cochin is named after Father Louis Cochin, a Catholic missionary and founder of the Thunderchild Mission in 1884. Père Cochin established missions in the region to serve the Indian and Metis peope. For many years Father Cochin resided with the Cree Indians and wintered on the shores of Jackfish Lake. He died in the community that came to be named for him in 1927. He is best remembered as the priest who ministered to Poundmaker's Band during the North West Resistance of 1885 and is credited as the 'go-between' Major-General Middleton negotiated the surrender of Poundmaker.
French immigrants took up land around Jackfish Lake by 1907. Stores and other businesses began to be established shortly thereafter. The Cochin Post Office opened in 1915. During the 1920s, families from the surrounding area began leasing land around the lakes for their summer vacations. Soon cabins began to dot the area and Cochin began to steadily develop as a summer resort destination. Commercial fishing operations and market gardens were opened during this time.
In 1978, Cochin was established as an organized hamlet and, on January 1, 1988, the community was incorporated as a resort village. The summer population may easily surpass 2 500 when factoring in all of the neighbouring resort areas during the peak season. Cochin’s economy is largely based on tourism, but it also benefits from the surrounding agricultural industry. Camping fishing, boating, hiking, golf, and a lighthouse are key attractions.
The Resort Village also has two restaurants, two stores and service stations, a post office, a community hall, two churches, a fire hall, a library, playgrounds and lots of recreation opportunities.
Be sure to visit soon - the sound of the loons will lull you to sleep as prairie grasses blow in the breeze and the waves crash into the shore.