Students: join our Discovery team this summer

Discovery rangers are the storytellers of Ontario Parks.

Roughly 300 Discovery staff work in over 60 parks across the province engaging visitors with stories of Ontario’s natural and cultural heritage.

Discovery rangers help our visitors experience the best of what Ontario Parks has to offer by facilitating experiences through educational and interpretive programming.

Piqued your interest? Learn more about how you can join our Discovery team. Continue reading Students: join our Discovery team this summer

International Day of Women and Girls in Science 2022

Happy International Day of Women and Girls in Science!

Our scientists are absolutely integral to Ontario Parks, working as researchers, biologists, ecologists, and more!

Take a look at a few of our awesome women scientists:

Continue reading International Day of Women and Girls in Science 2022

The incredible legacy of Maw at Sleeping Giant

Today’s post comes from Rachelle Law, Discovery Leader at Sleeping Giant Provincial Park.

Sleeping Giant is known for several things, one of them being our awe-inspiring views of the Sleeping Giant.

Another is our park cleaner nicknamed “Maw”, who retired from the park last year.

Working at the park for 39 years, Maw has become part of the true fabric of the park. She has left an extraordinary impact on the park, visitors and staff.

Continue reading The incredible legacy of Maw at Sleeping Giant

The ultimate Pinery challenge

In today’s post, Sarah Fencott, a naturalist at Pinery Provincial Park is sharing her journey to completing the ultimate Pinery challenge. The goal? To complete all ten trails at Pinery, including lookouts and extensions. 

Last year, my goal was to hike every trail before the end of the summer. I completed my goal with three days left in my contract.

This year, my goal was to hike all of the trails in one week. This worked out well, as we needed to do an infrastructure survey of the park trails anyway! By hiking three trails per day I had completed my goal within my first week back at work.

With my initial goal so easily achieved, I set my sights on a new challenge that would be harder than anything I had done in the park before: the Tour de Pinery.

Continue reading The ultimate Pinery challenge

The man behind the boardwalks: Ray Sheppard retires after 30 seasons at Pinery

Today’s post comes from Megan Loucks, Discovery Leader at Pinery Provincial Park

Have you ever been to Pinery Provincial Park?

Take a moment to think of your favourite spot. Is it the viewing platform along Riverside Trail? What about the boardwalk leading to the beach? Have you been to the top of the Nipissing Trail lookout?

Often we admire the beauty of the park’s natural wonders from boardwalks and lookouts, but have you ever wondered who built them?

Today’s blog is all about the man behind the boardwalks: Raymond Sheppard.

Continue reading The man behind the boardwalks: Ray Sheppard retires after 30 seasons at Pinery

Love at first snap: caring for Spike at Emily 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 Rosemary Minns from Emily Provincial Park.

Emily Provincial Park is a lovely place. Plenty of docks to fish, beaches to swim, and large campsites. I was extremely excited to work as a Discovery student at Emily. There was one catch to this job…

…I had to learn to take care of a Snapping Turtle. 

Continue reading Love at first snap: caring for Spike at Emily Provincial Park

What goes into closing a park for the winter?

While 31 provincial parks remain open for the winter, the rest hibernate until spring.

But closing a park isn’t as simple as just locking the gates. Our staff put a lot of elbow grease into prepping each park for the winter.

Here are just a few of the tasks we do each fall:

Continue reading What goes into closing a park for the winter?

Turtles: the ultimate survivors

In today’s post, Discovery Leader Olivia Bennett discusses turtles’ impact on Grundy Lake Provincial Park — and vice versa!

When I first started working at Grundy Lake, I was talking turtles with our park superintendent when someone asked, “Why do you care so much about turtles here?”

The answer is simple: while the park boasts a healthy turtle population and quality habitat, other areas are not so lucky.

This is only the beginning of why we should all care about turtles.

Continue reading Turtles: the ultimate survivors

Uncovering the “birdiest” trail at Pinery

Today’s post comes from Habitat Stewardship Technician Justin Johnson from Pinery Provincial Park. Justin has a M.Sc. in biology with a focus on bird acoustics. 

Birders are an interesting breed of people. Sometimes everything they do seems to subvert the norms of society.

Sleeping in? Rather not. Too much coffee? No such thing. $4500 binoculars? Yeah, I’ve seen it.

Birders’ bread and butter is local natural spaces and their trails. They can be very particular about which trails they walk. Seasoned birders often only use trails they perceive as “birdy,” neglecting those off their sacred path.

But how do we really know which trails are the “birdiest?”

Continue reading Uncovering the “birdiest” trail at Pinery