Health benefits of backcountry camping

Today’s post comes from Sarah McMichael, Ontario Parks’ Healthy Parks Healthy People Coordinator.

Backcountry camping is known for being a way to experience beautiful, serene landscapes. But a backcountry trip also provides an opportunity to challenge yourself physically and mentally.

The combination of paddling, portaging, and hiking through the backcountry is a great all-over workout. Plus, you will experience a ton of health benefits simply by being outdoors.

Hit the backcountry for a killer total-body workout this summer. Let’s do this!

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Spring paddling safety

Itching for ice out? We certainly are.

But spring weather can be fickle. Hitting the lake too early, failing to respect weather conditions or paddling beyond your skill level isn’t just risky — it’s downright dangerous.

We chatted with Paul Smith, Superintendent of Kawartha Highlands Signature Site, to get some top do’s and don’ts for spring paddling safety:

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Tips for safe and fun backcountry camping with young children

This post comes from Laurel Finney, a Learning and Education Specialist with Ontario Parks.

They say everything changes when you have a baby.

Although that is mostly true, there are some things which do not. For me, one of these is my passion for canoeing and wild places.

My partner and I are avid backcountry campers, and when our babe came along, it was only natural for us to adapt our trips to accommodate our growing family.

The following is a list of tips and tricks meant for experienced campers interested in exploring the backcountry with their little ones.

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Low-impact backcountry camping

Today’s post was written by Brooke Michell, a Park Biologist at Kawartha Highlands Signature Site Park.

“The love of wilderness is more than a hunger for what is always beyond reach; it is also an expression of loyalty to the earth, the earth which bore us and sustains us, the only paradise we shall ever know, the only paradise we ever need.” – Edward Abbey

Some of our most treasured moments occur off the beaten path. In the backcountry of Ontario Parks, the avid hiker, canoe tripper, angler, and outdoors person seeks solitude. Although anyone who has backcountry camped knows it’s not always a walk in the park.

Physical limits are often pushed while portaging through rugged terrain, and paddling across windswept water bodies. At this expense, why is backcountry camping one of our most beloved past times?

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5 backcountry gems of Southeastern Ontario

Ontario’s wilderness is a lot closer than you think.

Did you know you can leave downtown Toronto and be paddling out to your campsite in less than 3 hours?

These five southeastern parks are perfect for finding backcountry solitude close to home:

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March’s digital download

How do you get through the winter months?

We spend our days dreaming of pristine lakes and paddling adventures.  Throughout 2018, we’re sharing a free downloadable graphic. This month features a dreamy shot of backcountry paddling at Obabika River Provincial Park.

We’ve specially sized these images for your computers, tablets, smartphones and Facebook covers.

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Are you ready for the Northwest Wilderness Quest?

Do you dream of paddling the vast wilderness of Northwestern Ontario, gliding past moose, caribou and wolves? Can you hear the gentle sound of your paddle smoothly caressing endless lakes and rivers, drops of water slowly tumbling off the tip of your blade? Does the scent of pine and spruce forests invite fond memories of past backcountry canoe trips and inspire dreams of future adventures?

Just picture it. This is the Northwest Wilderness Quest.

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Maintaining the Missinaibi

The Missinaibi River is one of the longest and most famous canoe routes in the Hudson Bay watershed – 500 km of whitewater river, from the Arctic watershed divide down to James Bay.

This summer, our Northeastern Resource Stewardship Crew traveled 185 km of that river working to maintain Missinaibi Provincial Park‘s backcountry.

Check out this video of their travels:

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Temagami: an ancient canoe country

Today’s post comes from Natural Heritage Education and Marketing Specialist Dave Sproule.

It’s a rugged, time-worn landscape. A fractured piece of the Canadian Shield, with fault lines criss-crossing the roots of ancient mountains for hundreds of kilometres. More than 2,500 lakes fill those fault lines, and at over 600,000 hectares, it’s almost as large as Algonquin Provincial Park.

Is it any wonder so many paddlers lose their hearts to Temagami?

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