Environment Canada predicts warm temperatures for Ontario this fall. That’s good news for beach lovers. Beach crowds are gone and the lake views are something else. Distances between Ontario Parks in southwestern Ontario along lakes Huron and Erie are short. The beaches are great and both are a good bet for a fall circle tour. An Ontario Parks permit allows for a stay in one provincial park and day trips to others. The same goes for day permits – buy a day-use permit in one park and tour to different parks all day.
Alistair MacKenzie, a Natural Heritage Education Supervisor at the Pinery on Lake Huron says his park’s fall colours generally last into November. Oak, Cherry, Sassafras, and Tulip trees turn either orange, brown or golden yellow. Fragrant Sumac turns a vibrant red. Four other provincial parks on Lake Huron are within 178 kilometres of The Pinery and all have nice beaches. MacGregor and The Pinery have yurts too.
Nine provincial parks are on Lake Erie’s north shore. Total driving distance between Wheatley, the furthest southwest and Rock Point, the furthest east, is 299 kilometres. Port Burwell, Turkey Point and Long Point provincial parks are within forty-five minutes of each other. The beach at Long Point is one of Ontario’s best. Port Burwell and Turkey Point have beaches too. Turkey Point is home to an early cottage community and its beach which is part of the provincial park, is in the centre of town. The original settlement dates back to 1793. Some say it was named for an early settler with a pronounced Adam’s Apple. Others say Turkey Point got its name because of its wild turkey population. The population was virtually wiped out but twenty years ago, wild turkeys were re introduced to the region and today, they’re back in healthy numbers.
Ontario Parks’ fall colour report has the latest for parks along both lakes.