7,800 to 2,000 years ago: Middle Plains Period
In the first half of the Middle Plains Period, drought-like conditions resulted in a temporary expansion of the grasslands.
The atlatl (a system that enabled hunters to shoot spears and darts with greater force and thrust) was invented, greatly improving hunting efficiency.
People roamed the prairies in small family bands and bison evolved to their present state. Evidence of human occupation in the Qu’Appelle Valley during this time can be found at the Katepwa Beach site, which dates to about 4,780 years ago.