Quetico’s wilderness voices

Today’s post comes from Jill Legault, an information specialist at Quetico Provincial Park.

Quetico’s oral histories have been locked away on archival cassettes at the John B. Ridley Research Library — until now.

Courtesy of history enthusiasts from the University of Wisconsin Whitewater, they have come out of the vault and into our ears.

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Why you should go north to camp this summer

If you’ve been looking on our reservation system lately, you’ll have realized this already – our southern provincial parks are SUPER busy this year!

This summer, the solution to finding your serene camping trip might be to head north.

There, you’ll find not only more space to camp in peace, but also opportunities to explore landscapes unlike anything in southern Ontario.

Continue reading Why you should go north to camp this summer

Birding in the boreal

Lev Frid, birder par excellence, recently explored some of our northern parks, and wrote us the following post. If you love songbirds, this is a must-read!

For many Ontario birdwatchers, it’s all about the spring. Great Lakes havens such as Rondeau, MacGregor Point and Presqu’ile Provincial Parks host birding festivals and draw lots of visitors itching to see newly-arrived spring migrants.

What you might not know is that there are many opportunities to view these same birds on their breeding grounds in the boreal forest in some of our northern parks.

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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

Working at Pancake Bay Provincial Park

Today’s post comes from Kathleen Boston, a Discovery Leader at Pancake Bay Provincial Park. 

Three years ago, I applied to spend my summer working at Pancake Bay Provincial Park. It was one of the best decisions I ever made!

Thankfully I was chosen to work as a gate attendant for my first year. In my second year I moved to the maintenance department, and now, in my third year, I am part of the Discovery Program team.

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Under the Volcano Trail at Neys Provincial Park

Today’s post comes from Grace McGarry and Meghan Drake, Discovery Program staff at Neys and Mark Puumala, Resident Geologist at the Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines.

Neys Provincial Park is a special place. It has so many qualities that stand out when compared to other parks.

One of these qualities is the park’s Under the Volcano Trail. This stunning trail is entirely along the coast of Lake Superior.

This trail has some interesting features waiting to be discovered. Let’s take a look at what makes this trail special.

To start, the name says it all. This trail takes you along the route of what was once an active volcano where the coast of Lake Superior is now!

Continue reading Under the Volcano Trail at Neys Provincial Park

The best parts of a northern summer, according to a southern naturalist

Today’s post comes from Connor Ferguson, an Assistant Discovery Leader at Samuel de Champlain Provincial Park.

Every summer, you’ll find me in the parks of northern Ontario, sharing my love of nature with visitors from around the world as an Ontario Parks naturalist.

When the operating season is done, and the visitors have returned home, I go back to where I’m from: the far south of the province. I like to think that moving between these regions gives me a special appreciation for my time in the north.

Here are some of the reasons why I love spending my summers in Ontario’s north.

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Behind the scenes: from curious camper to Discovery staff at Lake Superior Provincial Park

In our “Behind the Scenes” series, Discovery Program staff across the province share a “backstage” glimpse of their favourite programs and projects. Today’s post comes from Jordan Welch and Kelly Taylor, Discovery Program staff at Lake Superior Provincial Park

We have all been asked the question “what do you want to be when you grow up?”

We tend to make the decision based on the experiences we have. For some, it’s school; for others, it’s travel. Perhaps even friends and family help in deciding a career path. We went outside.

Continue reading Behind the scenes: from curious camper to Discovery staff at Lake Superior Provincial Park

The life of a resource steward

Today’s post comes from Rebecca Rogge, a travelling resource steward for the Northeast Zone.

I first started working for the Northeast Zone Resource Steward Program back in 2011. It seems like a lifetime ago.

At the time, it was a relatively new job in Ontario Parks. The program had only been around for a few years, and few of us existed.

Several parks were created in 1999, the majority of which were “non-operating” provincial parks. They generally do not have facilities or dedicated staff. Many protect recreational waterways and nature reserves protect rare flora, fauna and geological landscapes.

This is where we, the resource stewards, spend most of our time. In these wonderfully beautiful and diverse places.

Continue reading The life of a resource steward