Algonquin Park has as much to offer the visitor in the winter as
during the summer. Highway 60 is ploughed and sanded all winter and
many trails are available for the winter visitor. The Algonquin
Visitor Centre is open on winter weekends and daily during the March break. A valid permit is required to use the park. Permits
can be purchased at the East or West Gates or at the self-service
station at the Mew Lake Campground.
Snowshoeing enthusiasts can go virtually anywhere within
the park except on cross-country ski trails. If you prefer a set
trail, you might try one of the short walking trails along the Highway
60 corridor or one of the two longer backpacking trails.
Cross-country Skiing - Algonquin has three trail networks
for cross-country skiing. They offer trails of varying lengths and
degrees of difficulty.
Fen Lake Ski Trail is located at the West Gate of the park.
Much of this trail travels through the hardwood bush typical of
Algonquin's west side. You will almost certainly see the tracks
of moose on you outing. It offers four loops of 1.25, 5.2, 11.4
and 13km and offers both easy and more challenging sections. All
trails are groomed and track set and a 6 km section also offers
a lane for skate skiing. A shelter and toilets are located at the
beginning of the trail and at Fen Lake.
Minnesing Trail is located on the north side of Highway 60,
23 km from the West Gate. The Minnesing Trail has four loops ranging in distance from 4.7
to 23.4 km. The trail is maintained for backcountry wilderness skiing
and is not groomed. Wide touring skis and large basket poles are
essential for soft snow conditions.
Leaf Lake Trail system provides some of the most beautiful
vistas and exhilarating skiing available anywhere. These trails
are found one km west of the East Gate. As well as a great variety
of country you may see the tracks of moose, otter, ruffed grouse,
marten and many other animals.
Leaf Lake Ski Trail offers a wide variety of trail selections ranging
in length from 5 to 51 km and ranging from easy to very difficult.
The system includes three loops that are groomed for skate skiing. All
trails are groomed and many are track set. Shelters and toilets
are available at several locations within the trail system.
Highway 60 Corridor
Mew Lake Campground offers camping from mid-October until
early May on a first-come first-serve basis. The main parking lot
and the roads adjacent to sites 1-76 are ploughed. Sites are ploughed
as time and weather permit. Sites 1 to 66 have electrical hook-ups.
Firewood can be purchased at the Mew Lake Campground woodlot. A
heated winterized comfort station provides drinking water, flush
toilets, showers and laundry.
Camping away from Highway 60 in the interior of the park is also
permitted during winter. You may wish to use one of the groomed
ski trails to enter the park interior but camping within sight or
sound of the trails or in trail shelters is not permitted. Winter
camping is also not permitted on designated summer campsites or
within 30 metres of a lakeshore, trail or portage. We recommend
that you camp in low sheltered areas where there is a good supply
of standing dead firewood for warmth and cooking.
Seven yurts, located in the Mew Lake Campground, are available for
rent during the winter. Accessible by vehicle, these tent-like structures
are equipped with basic furniture and electric heat. Reservations
are required for the yurts and can be made up to 5 months in advance
by called 1-888-ONT-PARK or by clicking on the reservation button
on this website.
Dogsledding opportunities, offered by commercial operators,
are available in two locations in the park - one along Highway
60 and one in the northwest section of the park accessible from
the village for South River on Highway 11.
Fishing during winter is not permitted in Algonquin Park.
Snowmobiling is not permitted within Algonquin Park with
the exception of the hydro line across Clyde Township.
We advise against ice travel. Ice conditions may vary due to weather, snow depth, pressure cracks, and many other variables. Hazards are difficult to detect. Ice may be safe in one location and unsafe nearby. Use alternate land routes to avoid ice travel.