How To Scatter Ashes

By: Alterna Cremation
Wednesday, February 17, 2021

After losing a loved one, it can be hard to accept that someone so close to us is now gone. Scattering ashes allows us to visualize their departure and take comfort in knowing that their remains will be in a place that was significant to them.

Choosing where to spread the cremated remains of your loved one is a personal and complicated decision. We’ve put together some information about the different ways you can scatter ashes, and what to know before doing so:


Where Can I Scatter Ashes?

In Manitoba, you can scatter the remains of a loved one in government-owned provincial parks or waterways without approval. If there is a park or other place in nature that your loved one enjoyed spending their time, you may choose to put their remains there.

You might also choose to scatter the ashes on private property, as long as you gain approval from the owner of the property.


Places to Scatter Ashes

  • In a waterway

First, a word of caution: be careful not to scatter the ashes near drinking water or in a public swimming area. 

You can purchase a biodegradable container for the ashes that will slowly dissolve in the water.

  • On a shoreline

Dig up a small section of the sand and place the ashes in it. Over time, the tide will wash away the area and disperse the remains throughout the water.

  • In a garden

Bury the ashes in a patch of soil, then plant a few flowers or plants overtop. Seeing the circle of life can provide comfort during the grieving process.


Consider the Following

Here are a few things to keep in mind before you scatter ashes:

  • The direction of the wind

Make sure you scatter ashes the same way the wind is blowing. Certain pieces of the ashes will be heavier than others, and they may drop to the ground instead of flying with the wind.

  • How to clean up afterward

Remember to bring a sanitary wipe to clean your hands from any leftover ashes.

  • What the ashes look like

As you handle the ashes, you may be surprised that they aren’t the finely-ground powder that you may have envisioned. The consistency is actually closer to coarse sand that contains pieces of bone fragments. 

  • Remembering the event

An occasion like this only happens once (or a few times, if you choose to scatter the ashes in multiple locations). When you think back on it, it may be therapeutic to keep a few mementos of the event. Record who else attended, what the weather was like, and why that location was significant to your loved one.

  • Scatter them all at once, or keep some?

Your next choice will be a deeply personal and very important one. Do you wish to scatter all the remains altogether, or do so in several locations? 

You might choose to scatter some ashes but keep the rest in your possession. Perhaps someone else would like to keep a portion of the ashes. You can place them in an urn or keepsake jewelry. 


We all grieve for lost loved ones in our own way. Scattering the ashes of a deceased friend or family member can stir up difficult emotions. Be sure to practice self-care following the event, and seek counselling if need be.

For direct cremation in Winnipeg, contact Alterna Cremation. Along with our cremation services, we provide grief support and pre-planning for final arrangements. 


Leave a comment
Please enter the numbers and letters you see in the image. Note that the case of the letters entered matters.


Please wait

Previous Posts

The Role Of Cremation In Eco-Friendly Funeral Planning

Many people prize the opportunity to be as eco-friendly as possible. Beyond just shopping at a local farmer's market, you might also want to look toward having a green funeral. An eco-friendly fune...

How To Properly Store An Urn In Your Home

When a loved one passes away, you want to do what you can to honour them and the life they lived. For many people, this means storing their loved one's ashes somewhere in their home. While keeping ...

Female-Owned Winnipeg Funeral Home Reflects On Five Years In Business As International Women’s Day Is Celebrated

WINNIPEG, MB:  Alterna Cremation, an alternative funeral home focused on dignified and direct cremation services, is in its fifth year of business.  And, with International Women’s Day be...

Burial & Cremation Cost Comparison: Understanding The Financial Implications

When a loved one passes away, several decisions must be made for the funeral. For many families, one of the most difficult decisions is whether to bury their beloved or have them cremated—and it of...

How To Talk To Kids About Death

Death is an inevitable part of life, but many parents face a unique challenge when a loved one passes on: Telling their kids and explaining what death means. Young children may have a hard time pro...

Music Suggestions For Funeral Services

Music expresses what words cannot and stirs human emotions in meaningful and powerful ways.  For this reason, life cycle events, like weddings and funerals, are often punctuated with poignant ...

Female-Owned Winnipeg Crematorium Continues To Serve The Community With Dignity & Innovation

WINNIPEG, Manitoba:  Alterna Cremation has nearly reached its one-hundredth five-star review on Google—no small feat for a female-owned business in what has traditionally been a male-dominated...

10 Meaningful Things To Do With Cremation Ashes

After a loved one is cremated, many people feel uncertain about what to do with the ashes.  What is the best way to memorialize the spirit of the person who has passed?     Of...

What Is The Difference Between A Funeral Director, Mortician, Undertaker, And Embalmer?

Technicalities such as the titles of people working in the funeral service industry may not be your foremost concern if a death has occurred in your immediate circle.  And certainly, the profe...

How To Make Room For Other People’s Grief

In today’s society, grief is often an avoided topic.  People aren’t sure what to say or how to help when someone they know is grieving the loss of a loved one.  And, to prevent saying the...