How to get your kids to love cross-country skiing

Did you know 19 of our parks have cross-country trails, about half of them groomed?

Cross-country skiing is a great way for families to get outdoors and enjoy the winter together! It’s less expensive and safer than alpine skiing, it helps keep kids fit, and it’s a skill they’ll have their entire life.

Here are our top seven tips for getting kids hooked on cross-country skiing:

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Skiing Quetico’s frozen wilderness

Today’s post comes from Quetico Provincial Park‘s Superintendent, Trevor Gibb.

The smell of crisp clean pine and spruce trees. The sight of fresh moose, wolf, otter and hare tracks zigging and zagging across the path in front of you. The chirp of a chickadee. The crunch of the bright white snow and the gentle bite of the winter air on your cheeks.

This is cross-country skiing in a wilderness park. This is what winter is all about.

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Fat biking at Algonquin

Snow on the trails no longer means that bike season is over; it means that winter fatbiking season has begun!

Fatbikes are mountain bikes with over-sized tires which allow the bikes to travel over snow with ease. One of the best things about fatbiking in the winter is that it’s a great way to get outside and be active all winter long and have a blast doing it!

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A naturalist’s letter to Santa Claus

One of our naturalists left his letter to Santa out on his desk, and we wanted to share a copy, in case anyone out there wants to lend Mr. Claus a hand this year.

Dear Santa,

I don’t really need a lot this year as I have the privilege of working in one of our great provincial parks: Presqu’ile. Perhaps you’ve visited or seen it as you fly over?

It is pretty easy to pick out from the air, sticking into Lake Ontario like it does. We get lots of birds landing here on migration to rest, which many people like to come and see. You’d be welcome to have a break here too.

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Where to skate in Ontario Parks

The air is crisp and clean. The evergreens are covered with snow. If you’re lucky – and observant – you might spot a cardinal, a finch, a waxwing or a blue jay as you glide along the ice.

And when the sun goes down, you can huddle around a big bonfire with a cup of hot chocolate and warm up before relacing your skates and heading back out to skate under the stars.

It’s simply magical.

This winter, plan a skating trip to these four provincial parks:

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How to have a safe winter hike

During the snowy season, parks can feel like our own personal winter wonderlands. Meandering through snow-covered trails and frozen forests can make an awesome day in the outdoors.

Nature lovers can celebrate the New Year with a First Day Hike in our parks this January 1. Here are some ways to make sure you have a fun and safe time on your frosty foray!

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Winter adventure in Arrowhead Provincial Park

Skating through the forest under the stars has become a bucket-list item for Ontarians.

But the secret’s out. On busy weekends, Arrowhead Provincial Park often hits capacity and has to turn away eager visitors.

Get the latest capacity updates here:


We’ve assembled a list of frequently asked questions and top tips for planning your Arrowhead adventure:

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