Backcountry for beginners: the best destinations

When executed safely, your first backcountry trip forges lifelong memories, opening an immersive getaway into nature.

But the leap from car camping to backcountry requires preparation and learning. New paddlers and hikers can find themselves in serious trouble if they overestimate their skills or choose a too-challenging route.

Here are some recommended trips for backcountry beginners:

Continue reading Backcountry for beginners: the best destinations

5 life-changing paddling routes of Northeastern Ontario

Whether you’re planning a scenic day trip or a rugged backcountry adventure, Northeastern Ontario is a paddler’s playground.

Last year, Northeastern Ontario Tourism asked their readers to vote for their top paddling destinations…

…and the votes are in!

Join us in counting down the top 5 paddling destinations of Northeastern Ontario:

Continue reading 5 life-changing paddling routes of Northeastern Ontario

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!

Continue reading Health benefits of backcountry camping

Kettle Lakes: a land shaped by icebergs

The deep green boreal forest of Kettle Lakes Provincial Park contains 22 beautiful little lakes. Of these lakes, 20 are called actually “kettle lakes” by geographers.

So what is a “kettle lake?”

To answer that question, we first must look at how kettles are formed.

Continue reading Kettle Lakes: a land shaped by icebergs

Backcountry routes without portages

This blog comes from David Legros, a Natural Heritage Education Specialist at Algonquin Provincial Park, and lover of backcountry camping. 

There you are, standing on the rocky shore of a lake. A windswept pine sits behind you, and a wild landscape before you. Welcome to backcountry camping!

Continue reading Backcountry routes without portages

Top 6 parks for canoe fishing in northern Ontario

Paddling into the wilderness, fishing from a canoe and then going back to camp to enjoy a backcountry fish fry is a special experience.

If you’re up for a trip like this, check out our recommendations for the best backcountry fishing destinations in our northern parks.  Continue reading Top 6 parks for canoe fishing in northern Ontario

Destination Temagami

Surrounded by shining waters and cloaked in towering pines, Finlayson Point Provincial Park lies just south of the Village of Temagami.

Sharing a shoreline with the Lake Temagami Skyline Preserve, a protected ring of pine forest that surrounds the lake, Finlayson Point provides visitors with access to Temagami — a treasured part of Ontario that many travellers see only a glimpse of as they head north or south along the highway.

Continue reading Destination Temagami

Fall paddling safety

Fall is the perfect time to paddle.

As the temperatures cool there are no bugs and the lakes become less crowded. Plus you can catch some of our beautiful fall colours!

But fall weather can be fickle. Hitting the lake too late, 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 fall paddling safety:

Continue reading Fall paddling safety

The Lake Superior Water Trail: the greatest of trails

Today’s post comes from Joanie McGuffin (paddler, author, and executive director of the Lake Superior Watershed Conservancy (LSWC)), and Holly Drew (LSWC Marketing and Communications Coordinator).

For thousands of years, people paddled birchbark canoes along the shores of Lake Superior to get from place to place. Travelling and trading, hunting and fishing; these were the activities of the historic Lake Superior Water Trail, now being celebrated as part of The Great Trail by Trans Canada Trail.

Continue reading The Lake Superior Water Trail: the greatest of trails

The Maukinak Trail: paddling from Dryden to Quetico

Today’s post comes from Lise Sorensen, Quetico’s Atikokan Entry Station Gate Attendant and off-season Trails Officer with the Path of the Paddle. If you’re planning to paddle the Maukinak Trail, this info will be indispensable.

Follow the path. It will lead you through boreal rivers and crystal-clear lakes, and past silent, watchful cliffs. Your guides will be eagles and your destination endless.

An integral segment of The Great Trail (Trans Canada Trail), the Path of the Paddle is a ribbon of water that stretches from Thunder Bay to the Manitoba border.

The Maukinak segment of the Path of the Paddle transects vast tracts of uninhabited crown land and connects the small communities of Atikokan and Dryden.

Continue reading The Maukinak Trail: paddling from Dryden to Quetico