Soak in the summer nightlife

August nightlife at Ontario Parks promises to be exciting!

Take in the Perseid Meteor Shower, which produces 50-100 meteors an hour at its peak. Meet “spirited” characters from Ontario’s past on a ghost walk. Solve a park mystery and maybe even hear wolves howl.

We’ve collected a few favourite evening events; which one speaks to you?

Continue reading Soak in the summer nightlife

Campsite vacancy highlights: July 29-August 1

Long weekends are never long enough, but any extra day that can be spent camping is a reason to celebrate in our books!

Why not use that extra day to head to one of our pristine and iconic northern parks? There are still many available sites up north, including vacancies for RV and electrical sites.

You can scout out your ideal campsite on our Campsite Browsing/Reservation tool (including pictures of most campsites!), or check out these featured campsites (available as of noon, July 28):

Continue reading Campsite vacancy highlights: July 29-August 1

5 questions with a backcountry ranger

Welcome to our “5 Questions” series! We chat with park staff around the province to give you an inside look at what it’s like to work at Ontario Parks.

Jason Lorbetskie has worked as a backcountry ranger in Algonquin Provincial Park for over 17 years. He is currently a Group Leader for Operations South, where his job duties include supervising other rangers, maintaining trails and campsites, and assisting with all facets of the backcountry program.

Continue reading 5 questions with a backcountry ranger

Join us for Algonquin’s “Meet the Researcher Day”

Today’s post comes from wildlife biologist Patrick Moldowan.

Within Algonquin Provincial Park, wildlife researchers work within an outdoor laboratory of a massive scale!

You might find them tucked away amid the dense forest, waist-deep in a wetland, or investigating a wolf den.

Welcome to the Algonquin Wildlife Research Station (WRS)!

Continue reading Join us for Algonquin’s “Meet the Researcher Day”

Downed trees become habitat for eastern red-backed salamanders

Today’s post comes from Laura Sagermann, a Natural Heritage Education leader from Bon Echo Provincial Park.

Across Ontario, our provincial parks protect a wide range of diverse ecosystems and habitats from human impact, urban development and other environmental threats.

However, this protected land is not immune to invasive species. These are non-native species that have been introduced (either purposely or accidentally) and have negative effects on a region.

At Bon Echo, the latest invasive species to be found is the insect-fungus combination responsible for beech bark disease.  Continue reading Downed trees become habitat for eastern red-backed salamanders

How to catch panfish

Today’s post comes from professional angler Italo Labignan and the Learn to Fish team!

When it comes to enjoying sportfishing in Ontario, some of the easiest and most plentiful fish to catch — whether from a boat or from shore — are panfish.

The most popular panfish in Ontario are the sunfish family (pumpkinseed, bluegill, rock bass & crappie) and perch.

Here’s what you need to know to catch them:

Continue reading How to catch panfish

Campsite vacancy highlights: July 22-24

The dog days of summer are now in full swing. If you’re looking for a change of scenery, Ontario Parks can be a great starting place. This weekend is a perfect opportunity to get out and explore some of our parks while enjoying some swimming, hiking, paddling and boating.

You can scout out your ideal campsite on our Campsite Browsing/Reservation tool (including pictures of most campsites!), or check out these featured campsites (available as of noon, July 21):

Continue reading Campsite vacancy highlights: July 22-24

Hunting dragons, discovering damsels

During the summer of 2015, several research projects were conducted at Murphys Point Provincial Park, but one in particular attracted the attention of staff and public alike.

With long-handled nets in hand, park staff — led by expert volunteer Bev Edwards — could be seen thigh-deep in the vernal ponds, streams and lakes located within the park.

What were they doing?

Surveying for odonates (that’s dragonflies and damselflies to most of us).

Continue reading Hunting dragons, discovering damsels