Windy Lake Provincial Park

Windy Lake Provincial Park

Northern Ontario Provincial Parks

Windy-Lake-Provincial-Park

Windy Lake Provincial Park is located 45 minutes west of Sudbury off of Highway 144.

The campground sits on the beautiful sandy shores of Windy Lake in Northern Ontario.

Windy Lake Provincial Park – The Campground

There are a variety of options for camping at Windy Lake.

The campground itself has over 90 regular campsites with half of them featuring electricity. These sites are in loops separating the non-electrical from the electrical. All sites are large and provide plenty of room for trailers or multiple tents.

There are also unique “double sites” where two sites combine into one large lot. These sites are perfect to use as a smaller group camping site.

Another unique feature is the four Yurt sites and Rustic Cabin camping. Each can house multiple people and have beds built into them. The Rustic Cabin even has a fridge and a microwave while the yurts have an electrical outlet.

An unique feature is the walk-in camping sites that are accessible only by foot. There is a common parking area but vehicles aren’t permitted on the sites. It gives the site a backcountry feel but still easy to get to.

  • Windy-Lake-Welcome-Sign
    Welcome to Windy Lake entrance sign - adventure awaits!

What to do at Windy Lake Provincial Park?

The beach is one of the larger ones in the Sudbury area. Not only is it well frequented by campers, many visitors from nearby Sudbury will visit the beach on day passes.

There is a private reservable day-use area that is separate from the beach but can hold a group gathering. This is not a bad idea because the beach fills up fast.

The water get progressively deeper and is a bit cold, but the sand will burn your toes on hot days. It’s a good trade off.

There are two separate play equipment in the park. One is right down in the public day use area and is almost brand new. Complete with a see-saw, zip line and swing, the play area is great for children. The other play area is located just outside of the comfort station in the main park.

Although it is a bit older, it is much quieter then the beach play equipment and a great after supper event.

One of the downfalls of the park, is that the beach is a pretty good hike from the campground. Although, there is a walking path to cut down the distance, it is still a good walk.

Many boats travel the lake as well. You can see many people fishing at Windy Lake as you sit on the shores.

Going after a variety of fish, but known for it’s Lake Trout, the lake offers great catches both in the summer and winter. Ice fishing on Windy Lake is unique as you can rent ice shacks for the day.

Hiking at Windy Lake

There is one hiking trail in the park, right near the comfort station.

The three kilometre trail, takes you into the vast Northern Ontario wilderness.

Large trees showcase the vast array of birds and small animals.

The trail to the Beach is a hike in it’s own however. Featuring some great roots that make up nature’s staircase, the dip in the lake at the end is a great reward.

Windy Lake Provincial Park Review

If you are looking to camping near Sudbury, Windy Lake Provincial Park offers a great time. Similar to Fairbank Provincial Park, Windy offers a glimpse of the great beaches in the area.

Multiple playgrounds and a large variety of camping sites, there is something for everyone.

Esker Lakes Provincial Park – Camping near Kirkland Lake

Northern Ontario Provincial Parks

Esker Lakes Provincial Park is located in Northern Ontario; 32 kilometers north of Kirkland Lake.

Esker Lakes campground is located in the Timiskaming District off of Highway 672 and sits on the Eastern shores of Lake Panagapka.

Esker Lakes Provincial Park – The Campground

The campground has approximately 100 sites with nearly 60 of them having electricity.

Separated into two different areas, the electrical and non-electrical have campgrounds of their own.

The campgrounds are appropriately named Sunny Point campground and Lakeside and Hilltop campground.

Esker Lakes campground features three group campsites. They are all secluded, two on Lake Lallan and one at the entrance of the park. There is plenty of room on any of these group sites to get the family together and enjoy this great park.

What to do at Esker Lakes Provincial Park

Esker Lakes is a beautiful park that features countless crystal clear lakes created by glaciers thousands of years ago. Each Lake can be canoed to and there are only short portages between them.

Lake Panagapka features two sandy swimming beaches, one right near the campsites and the other in the day use area. Many of the lakes in the Provincial Park, because they were created by glaciers, are crystal-clear. The bottom of the lakes can be seen in some areas well over 8 feet down.

Similar to many campgrounds in the North, canoeing is a great activity at Esker Lakes.

With over 15 kilometers of routes available and a launch on Panagapka, everyone has the opportunity to enjoy a great day on the lakes.

There are two swimming beaches in Esker Lakes campground. They are both on Lake Panagapka.

One swimming area is right at the campground and other at the day use area.

Hiking in Esker Lakes Provincial Park

Esker Provincial Park is home to four different hiking trails

  1. Prospector’s Trail
  2. Rated easy, this Lake Panagapka hiking trail goes along the Southeast shore of the Lake. The trail is close to 1.4 kilometers long.

  3. Lonesome Bog Trail
  4. Also rated easy, the trail circles Sausage Lake. On the east end of the Lake, is a bog that can be traveled across using a bridge. The trail is close to 1.5 kilometers long.

  5. Recreation Trail
  6. Rated easy, this is a great trail for a quick walk or run through the campground. The trail is also close to 1.5 kilometers long.

  7. Trapper’s Trail
  8. Rated difficult, Trapper’s Trail has three different loops ranging between 9, 14, and 20 kilometers. Beginning on the northern end of Panagapka, the trail continues north to Thrasher Lake and is well marked. Along the trail is an older Trapper’s cabin that was inhabited by an Ojibway woman who was there until 1970.

A Final Esker Lakes Provincial Park review

This is a family friendly campground near Kirkland Lake.

The rich history of fur trading as well as Lake Panagapka make this a nature’s paradise.

With many interior lakes formed by glaciers, thousands of years ago, this park has animals crawling all over it.

Any day is great for camping here, but you especially do not want to miss the Blueberry festival in August.

Rainbow Falls Provincial Park

Rainbow Falls Provincial Park

Northern Ontario Provincial Parks

Rainbow Falls Provincial Park is located on the shores of Lake Superior in Northern Ontario.

The Park is located five minutes east of Rossport and 12 minutes west of Schreiber.

With some of the most beautiful shoreline along Lake Superior, Rainbow Falls is a must see for everyone.

rainbow-falls-fishing
(Photo credit to XAct Visual)

Rainbow Falls Provincial Park Campground

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(Photo Credit to XAct Visual)
The campground is broken into two different areas. With over 125 campsites combined, there is a camping area for everyone.

The Rossport campground, is located on the rocky shores of Lake Superior. With 36 sites total, 23 having electricity, this is a breathtaking area. Sites are very open in the Rossport campground but offer a memory that not many Northern Ontario Provincial Parks can match.

The Whitesand Lake campground is located on the north side of Highway 17. With nearly 100 sites while roughly of them feature electricity, this campground offers a great family atmosphere. The campground is broken up into four different loops; Selim, Maggie, Whitesand, and Lakeside.

Both Maggie and Selim offer electrical sites while Whitesand and Lakeside do not.

What to do at Rainbow Falls Provincial Park

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(Photo Credit to XAct Visual)
Hiking at Rainbow Falls offers some of the most difficult terrain of any Provincial Park. The rocky shores of Superior provide difficulties for even the most experienced hikers.

The Trans-Canada Trail runs through the Park. The Casque-Isles section is 52 kilometres long and runs through the towns of Terrace Bay, Schrieber, and Rossport.

While offering unbelievable views, this trail is not to be taken lightly.

Always let someone know when you are hiking the Trans-Canada trail.

Hiking Trails in Rainbow Falls Provincial Park
rainbow-falls-hiking-trails
(Photo Credit to XAct Visual)
  1. Back Forty Trail
    This five and a half kilometre trail travels to a vast outlook over Lake Superior. While rated difficult due to its continued climb, the view at the end is well worth it
  2. Lake Superior and Whitesand Lake
    Just under five kilometres, even though this trail is rated the easiest of the 4, it is anything but. Rated moderately difficult, just like the Back Forty Trail, this trail offers some stunning views of the Lake they call Gitche Gumee.
  3. Rainbow Falls Trail
    The shortest of the three trails around three kilometres long, this trail offers it all. From descending down the falls to a bridge overlooking the water, to ascending to a great lookout of Superior. This trail has one memorable view after another.

Swimming at Rainbow Falls

The tale of two parks.

Whitesand Lake offers two sandy beaches that are great for the family. Whether you are playing Frisbee or swimming in the buoyed area, this is a perfect little getaway.

Rossport offers the frigid waters of Lake Superior. As your body penetrates the surface, the lake surrounds you, removing all stress through Lake Superior Therapy.

Both swimming areas are a must try while you are camping at Rainbow Falls.

Lake Superior has breathtaking views all around but few Provincial Parks compare to Rainbow Falls. From the lookouts, to the waterfalls, to the sandy beaches, this campground has something for everyone.

Fairbank Provincial Park – Camping near Sudbury

Fairbank Provincial Park – Camping near Sudbury

Northern Ontario Provincial Parks

fairbank-provincial-park-northern-ontario

Fairbank Provincial Park is located 45 kilometers west of Sudbury and 75 kilometers east of Espanola in Northern Ontario. Fairbank Lake is one of the clearest, spring-fed lakes in Northern Ontario.

Right the edge of the Sudbury Basin, the provincial park owes much of its unique features to the history of the area. The Sudbury Basin was formed nearly 1.8 billion years ago by a meteor crash.

Fairbank Provincial Park – The Campground

20 kilometers off of Highway 17, Fairbank campground boasts over 150 campsites with over 40 campsites having electrical hookups.

The Park consists of one large campground but is broken up nicely throughout the trees. The tall maple trees provide plenty of shade and large campsites in a variety of settings.

fairbank-provincial-park-comfort-stationFairbank Park has a large comfort station with flush toilets. Just outside of the comfort station is a large field that is perfect to play Frisbee or run with a dog.

Many of the campsites are right on the water and each with their own little beach. These are perfect sites for families as the kids can enjoy the sand while the parents watch.

The group camping site is very large and can easily hold 7 or 8 trailers, perfect for a large family gathering at the campground.

What to do at Fairbank Provincial Park?

fairbank-provincial-park-ducks-beachNot only do many of the campsites at Fairbank have their own private beaches, the public beach is great as well. The public beach is the perfect size so that all may enjoy in the campground.

There is a large grassy area just up from the Fairbank beach for people to have picnics or catch some sun. The water gradually gets deeper and is buoyed off for safety. Fairbank is a great area for swimming near Sudbury.

The lake is home to a number of private camps and it is normal to see many boats travelling on the Lake. Various fishermen also take in the lake with the island near the swimming beach being a hotspot for fishing.

Fairbank Provincial Park has a boat launch on its premises that provides fishermen and boating enthusiasts an opportunity to go out on the Lake.

Bass are most often found in Fairbank Lake but a variety of other fish can be caught too.

The campground doesn’t offer a Natural Heritage Education staff but has other programs that everyone can take part in. Science North, the largest Science Centre in Northern Ontario, provides some activities for children at the campground.

The July 1st long weekend is a show in itself. The local private camps all decorate and board their pontoon boats for a parade of the lake while Canadian pride is on full display.

There is one hiking trail in the park. The Wa-Shai-Gai-Mog (Ojibway for “clear water”) provides 10 unique stops that showcase different aspects of the Park. From drill holes for diamonds to seeing Sudbury’s iconic superstack in the distance.

We suggest grabbing a pamphlet from the gatehouse; although the spots have markings without the info you may have a hard time knowing what you are looking at.

A Great Campground near Sudbury for the Family

fairbank-provincial-park-family-play-structureFairbank Provincial Park is a very family friendly campground. There is a great play structure down at the beach as well as a volleyball net to enjoy.

There are canoe rentals as well as a great family beach. The beaches on the individual campsites though will have the children wanting to come back often.

There own little beach paradise where they can build their own sand castles without fear of being knocked down. Except, maybe, by their siblings.

Fairbank campground is a great family campground that is set far away from the highway in a serene area of Northern Ontario.

Fairbank Lake is crystal clear and relatively quiet despite private camps on the Lake.

The growth of the forest provides unique tree growth and plenty of little animals around the campsite.

Northern Ontario is at its finest in this campground and is a great campground near Sudbury with a public Sudbury beach.

Sleeping Giant Provincial Park

Sleeping Giant Provincial Park

Northern Ontario Provincial Parks

Sleeping Giant Provincial Park is located in Northern Ontario on the Beautiful shores of Lake Superior.

The park is about an hours drive to Thunder Bay, travelling 30 minutes on both Highway 17 and Highway 587.

Looking out the peninsula from Highway 17, the hills actually look like a person laying down, hence the name Sleeping Giant. The furthest tip of the peninsula is the Giant’s feet.

sleeping-giant-provincial-park-northern-ontario
(Photo courtesy of XAct Visual)

Sleeping Giant Provincial Park – The Campground

With over 200 campsites, The Marie Louise Lake Campground, is the Provincial Park’s main campsite. Over half of the campground offers the convenience of electricity.

Ranging in terrain, some campsites are great for recreational vehicles, others for tents and some for those campers who want to get away from everyone.

Mr-McKay-Sleeping-Giant-Provincial-Park
(Photo Courtesy of XAct Visual)
he interior while others are right on the shores of Lake Superior.

Group camping at Sleeping Giant can be done on one of two sites. The smaller site features electricity and accommodations of up to 25 people. The larger sites also has electricity and can fit up to 50 people.

Similar to Blue Lake Provincial Park, the Marie Louise Lake Campground offers “trailer equipped” sites. With large, fully functions trailers available, campers can enjoy a camping retreat in the comfort of a trailer. There are 3sites total.

The campground also has five cottage equipped sites that can be moved right into.

With great Northern Ontario names such as Dragon’s Mouth, Rose Pogonia, Fairy Slipper, Pink Moccasin Flower, and Coral Root, the cabins offer a little something extra.

What to Do at Sleeping Giant Provincial Park?

ontario-sleeping-giant-provincial-park-thunder-bay-lookoutNestled on the shores of Lake Superior, the views and spectacles are endless.

Taking full advantage of it’s location, the Provincial Park has well over 100 km of hiking trails.

Ranging from the short, half kilometer, Plantain Lane Trail (with one of the best views in the park from the Sibley Creek bridge) to the forty kilometer Kabeyun Trail, there is a trail for every hiker.

The Natural Heritage Education staff retell stories of mining and the area and stories of the lake known as Gitchee Gumee. With programs ranging from wildlife to vegetation, campers have the opportunity to learn about this extremely unique park.

The winter months offer some of the best cross country skiing in the Thunder Bay district in Northern Ontario. With over 50 kilometres of groomed trail, all ski levels have the opportunity to partake in this great past time.

The Sleeping Giant Loppet, both a friendly and competitive cross country skiing competion takes place on the first Saturday every March.

With trails ranging from 8 kilometers to 50, the Loppet offers a challenge for all skill levels.

Swimming in Sleeping Giant Provincial Park

There is plenty of opportunities to swim all over the park as well as the main campground. Marie Louise Lake has a main swimming beach that is well marked with buoys.

Swimming in Lake Superior is also available on many parts of the Kabeyun trail. Many of the secluded bays along the hike offer the chance to have a great swim and experience some Lake Superior therapy.

Middlebrun Bay also has a great beach full of sand and is one of the more convenient beaches in the park.

Sleeping Giant is one of the most picturesque parks in Northern Ontario. A true Northern Ontario beauty from both Highway 17 as well as the views from within the park, this is one camping and hiking experience you can not miss.

Caliper Lake Provincial Park – Camping near Nestor Falls

Northern Ontario Provincial Parks

Caliper Lake Provincial Park is located in Northern Ontario; seven kilometres south of Nestor Falls. Caliper Lake campground is in the Kenora district, directly off the Trans Canada Highway and sits on the northern shores of the beautiful Caliper Lake.

Caliper Lake Provincial Park – The Campground

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(photo credit to Leanna Mongrain)
The campground features over 80 sites with about one third of them having electricity. The park is broken up into two separate areas, one for the electrical sites while the other having non-electrical.

Caliper Lake campground offers a spacious group campsite that can fit nearly 40 people. The site overlooks the lake and is one of the nicer camping sites in the park.

One of the unique features of Caliper Lake are the walk-in campsites. Eight of the sites have a short walking distance after parking your car away from the site. Ranging up to 50 metres, the sites make you feel like you are in the backcountry and are right on the water.

What to do at Caliper Lake Provincial Park?

caliper-lake-provincial-park-swimming
(photo credit to Leanna Mongrain)
Caliper Lake features a great swimming area with sandy beaches, located in the western part of the park. The beach is a great size for an inland lake in Northern Ontario. The lake is shallow which keeps the water warmer but still provides a refreshing swim.

The park also features a great hiking trail located near the entrance of the park.

The Beaver Pond Trail ranges in size depending on which loop you choose. Between 2 and 3 kilometres, this moderately difficult hiking trail takes you around a great reminder of the vast differences in Northern Ontario forests and ponds.

One of the best parts about the campground is the annual Moose N’ Fiddle Music Festival. Displaying a wide variety of upcoming and established musical talent; there is music that everyone can enjoy. Artisan shops, a variety of food trucks and music lessons provide a great interactive opportunity for all of the campers and visitors.

Fishing in Caliper Lake Provincial Park

caliper-lake-landing
(Photo Credit to Leanna Mongrain)
Caliper Lake is home to a wide variety of fish which includes Northern Pike, Crappie, Walleye and Smallmouth Bass. An unforgettable shore lunch is just waiting to be pulled out of the lake.

The boat launch is right in the middle of the two separate campgrounds. One of the best parts of camping in the park is fishing on Caliper Lake.

Caliper Lake Provincial Park is a great campground located in Northern Ontario near Nestor Falls. Located directly off Highway 17; this park features something for everyone.

Blue Lake Provincial Park – Camping near Vermillion Bay

Blue Lake Provincial Park – Camping near Vermillion Bay

Northern Ontario Provincial Parks
blue-lake-provincial-park-sunset
(Photo credit to Paul Darling)

Blue Lake Provincial Park is located in Northern Ontario; nine kilometres north of Vermillion Bay. Blue Lake campground is located in the Kenora District. Off of Highway 647, which is directly off the Trans Canada Highway, the park sits on the eastern shores of beautiful Blue Lake.

Blue Lake Provincial Park – The Campground

The campground features over 200 sites with half of them electrical. The park is well laid out and is well marked in order to find your campsite.

The park features two group campsites that can fit anywhere between 40 and 140 people. Both group campsites are in great locations at opposite ends of the park and are some of the closest sites to the shores of Blue Lake.

One of the more unique features of Blue Lake campground are the “trailer equipped” sites. Six sites in the park come ready to camp with trailers already on the site and the only thing you need to take care of is kitchen and personal items.

Blue Lake Provincial Park has a rich history in Northern Ontario. In the early 1900’s, there was a large forest fire that left it’s mark in the Park.

What to do at Blue Lake Provincial Park?

blue-lake-provincial-park-water
(Photo credit to Paul Darling)
Blue Lake features some of the most crystal clear waters in Northern Ontario. A long sandy beach runs the entire length of the park and features buoys to mark the safe swimming area. One of the group campsites has its own buoyed beach.

There is no shortage of available hiking in Blue Lake Provincial Park. The park features four quite unique hiking trails through a variety of areas.

The Boulder Ridge trail is a one kilometre trail that is relatively easy to traverse. A truly Northern Ontario mix of scenery, this trail features it all. Remnants of glaciers and forest fires through the areas and sand runs from rivers that have dried up.

The Goblin Lake trail, the longest in the park, is 11 kilometres long and a moderate to difficult hike. This all day hike wraps around Goblin Lake and provides scenery that would like the same as hundreds of years ago when the fur traders were in the area.

Rock Point trail is a four kilometre trail with a moderate level of difficulty. Beginning at an active beaver pond, the trail traverses through a wide array of Northern Ontario trees from cedars near the shore line to large jack pine and balsam.

The Spruce Fen Boardwalk trail is one kilometre long, boardwalk trail that takes you around a floating island. Similar to the bogs of Ivanhoe Lake Provincial Park, this unique feature is really something spectacular. Many animals and insects take advantage of this and can be seen from the walking path.

The park also features a Natural Heritage Education (NHE) staff which offers a variety of programs as well as treks back in time. Along with an old log cabin which houses the Park’s museum, it is really well representative of the great history of the area.

Fishing in Blue Lake Provincial Park

Blue Lake is another great fishing lake in Northern Ontario with a wide variety of fish. Lake Trout, Smallmouth Bass and Northern Pike are mainstays of the Lake and provide the usual catches. More experienced fisherman will try to pull Walleye or Musky out of Blue Lake, but they pose much more of a challenge.

Nearby Corner Lake which is located only three kilometres south on Highway 647 features an opportunity to catch Walleye. Although, no other lakes are fully contained in the park, there are many lakes in the area offering a wide variety of fish.

Blue Lake has a fish cleaning hut which is on the opposite side of where the boat launch is located. Somewhat inconvenient, it is well used with all the different fish coming out of Blue Lake.

The lake features a steady number of canoes and kayaks which can be rented directly from the Park.

Blue Lake Provincial Park is a great campground near Vermillion Bay in Northern Ontario. Located just off Highway 17, it is very convenient and will provide countless memories for everyone that attends.

Aaron Provincial Park – Camping near Dryden

Aaron Provincial Park – Camping near Dryden

Northern Ontario Provincial Parks

Aaron-Provincial-Park-Sunset
(Photo credit to Paul Darling)
Aaron Provincial Park is located in the Kenora district of Northern Ontario; 11 kilometres east of Dryden.

Located on the southern and eastern shores of beautiful Lake Thunder just off of the Trans Canada Highway, Aaron park is a camper’s dream.

Aaron Provincial Park – The Campground

  • Aaron-Provincial-Park-Entrance
    Aaron Provincial Park Entrance, directly off Highway 17 near Dryden (Photo credit to Paul Darling)
  • Aaron-Provincial-Park-River-Road
    Driving along the shores of Lake Thunder (Photo credit to Paul Darling)
  • Aaron-Provincial-Park-Hiking-Trails
    Hiking sign for Aspen Trail (Photo credit to Paul Darling)
  • Aaron-Provincial-Park-Hiking
    The Aspen Hiking Trail is two kilometres long (Photo credit to Paul Darling)
  • Aaron-Park-Point
    Point on Lake Thunder (Photo credit to Paul Darling)
  • Aaron-Provincial-Lake
    Overlooking Lake Thunder (Photo credit to Paul Darling)
  • Aaron-Provincial-Lake
    Overlooking Lake Thunder (Photo credit to Paul Darling)
  • Aaron-Provincial-Park-Directions
    Campsites at Aaron Provincial Park (Photo credit to Paul Darling)
  • Aaron-Provincial-Park-Mushroom
    Wild Mushrooms - Better safe than sorry (Photo credit to Paul Darling)
  • Aaron-Provincial-Devils-Paintbrushes
    Devil's Paintbrushes at Aaron Park (Photo credit to Paul Darling)
  • Aaron-Park-Crow-Tree
    Crow overlooking Aaron Provincial Park (Photo credit to Paul Darling)

Aaron Park features nearly 100 campsites with approximately 30 percent of them having electrical hookups.

The campground is made up of two separate sections, east and west. Thunder Creek flows right through the middle of the park which separates the two sections.

Aaron Provincial campground has one group campsite that can easily handle 15 to 20 people.

This park, like so many other Northern Ontario Provincial Parks, shows the effects of glaciers. The glaciers left scratches on rocks as memories of them moving through the area.

What to do at Aaron Provincial Park

Aaron-Provincial-Park-Campground
(Photo credit to Paul Darling)
The park features two beautiful, sandy swim beaches on Lake Thunder.

One beach is located on the east end of the campground and one at the west end. Both beaches feature picnic tables that can be used for a shore time lunch while taking a break from swimming.

One of the best features is hiking in Aaron Provincial Park. The park features two hiking trails that offer up different scenery.

The Aspen Trail is 2 kilometers long and is a moderate level of difficulty. Winding through tall balsam and jackpine, the Aspen Trial shows remnants of the glaciers going through the area. White-tailed Deer are frequent in the area and will leave their calling cards all around the Aspen trail.

The Eastern Cedar trail is just over a kilometer long and is an easy hike. Featuring some of the larger trees in Northern Ontario, this trail will make you feel like you have gone back in time. The trees are a reminder of the strength of the forestry industry in Northern Ontario.

The park store features a wide selection of Ontario Parks items including clothing and souvenirs. Firewood purchases can be made at the park store while grocery purchases can be done in the nearby town of Dryden.

Fishing on Lake Thunder in Aaron Provincial Park

Aaron-Provincial-Park-Boat-Launch
(Photo credit to Paul Darling)
Lake Thunder features some great fishing with multiple areas on the lake that are hot-spots. The lake features a wide array of fish but is most notable for the Walleye, Lake Trout and Northern Pike.

The Park features a boat launch that directly enters Lake Thunder. Near the boat launch is a fish cleaning station that has running water, a luxury when cleaning a great Northern Ontario catch.

Aaron Provincial Park is truly a gem of a Provincial Park in Northern Ontario. The park is nestled on the shores of historic Lake Thunder provides showcases the importance of forestry while offering great swimming on sandy beaches.

White Lake Provincial Park – Camping Near White River

White Lake Provincial Park – Camping Near White River

Northern Ontario Provincial Parks

white-lake-provincial-park

White Lake Provincial Park is located in Northern Ontario approximately 40 kilometres west of White River and 50 kilometres east of Marathon along Highway 17. White Lake campground is located, directly across the mouth of the White River from Pic Mobert First Nation. The Provincial Park is the first campground inside of the Thunder Bay District as you are heading west.

White Lake Provincial Park – The Campground

White Lake Park has a total a 187 campsites with approximately 60 having electrical hookups. The Park is broken down into three separate campgrounds, Woodlily, Moccasin Flower and Sundew. Moccasin Flower is centrally located and has the campground’s only comfort station with flush toilets and showers. White Lake Provincial Park has one large group camp site that can accommodate up to 60 people, the group site is on the way into the park after the Gatehouse.

White Lake has a long history in the timber industry. Logs would be run down the river in the early 1900’s. The town museum in nearby White River has many pictures and artifacts of the logging industry including old axes that were found on the bottom of the White Lake. Logging is a significant industry in the town of White River and the saw mill is still running today as White River Forest Products. White River Forest Products is a collaborative effort between the town of White River and Pic Mobert First Nation.

What to do at White Lake Provincial Park?

The Park features two buoyed beach areas for swimming as well as multiple campsites that are right on the water. White Lake is a beautiful lake for swimming with clean, clear water and gets progressively deeper at both beaches. The main swimming beach has a large field just up from it that is great for playing catch or Frisbee.

There are also many smaller lakes within the park which are very serene settings for canoeing. Deer Lake, located beside the amphitheatre, provides a quiet calm lake for canoeing. The wildlife, such as beavers and birds love this lake. Clearwater Lake, which is completely spring fed, provides many of the same opportunities as Deer Lake.

The Provincial Park has a great outdoor education program complete with Amphitheatre. It is a bit of a ride from the park but many of the programs feature reminders of the logging history in the area.

Fishing at White Lake Provincial Park

White Lake has some of the best Walleye fishing in Northern Ontario. There are multiple sites on the Lake as well as up the White River that are hotbeds for Walleye.

There aren’t really any areas on the lake where fish aren’t caught but one of the best holes is Clay Bay. Clay Bay is located on the other side of White Lake, which can get choppy, but the rewards far outweigh a rough ride. Many of the Walleye pulled out of the lake are of a good size as well.

The Provincial Park has a fish cleaning hut right at the boat launch. There is plenty of parking at the boat launch for trailers so that they don’t take up too much of your site.

White Lake Provincial Park is a park between White River and Marathon that shouldn’t be missed. You can feel the history in the air.

Pancake Bay Provincial Park

Pancake Bay Provincial Park

Northern Ontario Provincial Parks

Pancake-bay-provincial-parkPancake Bay Provincial Park is located approximately 75 kilometres north of Sault Ste Marie and 150 kilometres south of Wawa in Northern Ontario. Pancake Bay has one of the most beautiful and large sand beaches on all of Lake Superior.

Pancake Bay Provincial Park – The Campground

The Park is 5 minutes north of Batchewana Bay Provincial Park and Batchewana first nation. Pancake Bay boasts over 200 campsites, many with electrical hookups. The Park is spread out over five different individual campgrounds. The campgrounds names are East, East-Central, West-Central, West and Hilltop which is a radio-free campground. Nearly half of the campsites have views of the water but those sites book up fast. The park has three shower facilities, flushing toilets, a store, canoe rentals and five yurts. There are also five large group campsites located at the west end of the park with a more private beach area and very little traffic. The group sites provide families and groups together on one site for campfires and story telling.

pancake-bay-provincial-park-entrancePancake Bay Provincial Park has a very long, significant history. The park was one of the last stopping areas for the Voyageurs as they made their voyage across Lake Superior to Thunder Bay and Old Fort William. Historians called it Pancake Bay because all the Voyageurs had remaining on their voyage was flour to make Pancakes. Others claim because of the beach follows the roundness of the bay out to the two points, it makes the bay look like a Pancake. Either way, the stop was extremely important during the fur trade and many artifacts have been found in the area.

What to do at Pancake Bay Provincial Park

The beach is over three kilometres long of fine sand and Pancake Bay is protected by two points that go out into Lake Superior. There are plenty of areas on the beach where park visitors can enjoy Frisbee, football or swimming in the sand bottom lake. The Day Use Area is located right at the Gatehouse and has ample picnic tables and barbeques to enjoy.

During the Salmon run in the fall, it is normal to see fishermen up to their chest in hip waders casting out into Superior. With the Leaves changing colours in the distance, it is fishing at its finest. Although there is no boat launch at the park, the Pancake River and surrounding Lakes in the park are home to Lake Trout, Rainbow Trout and Salmon. It may take a little while to locate a good lake on the nearby logging roads, the fishing is well worth it.

The Natural Heritage Education staff at Pancake Bay Provincial Park always seem to have an event going on. From nighttime walks on the shores of Lake Superior to look at constellations to catching bugs in the little creeks that run into the Lake, there is something for every age group. The August long weekend always features a fish fry with the Batchewana Fire Department.

Pancake Bay Provincial Park is a Family Friendly Campground near Sault Ste Marie

Pancake Bay campground is very family friendly. From the superior sand beach to the playground area there are plenty of things for Children to do. The Natural Heritage Education staff usually have two events a weekend for kids. The park also features two hiking trails, one that has an Edmund Fitzgerald lookout. For those with young children, the Hilltop campground is radio free and can provide ample opportunity for napping children. At nighttime, the lights from the Wind Farm can be seen across Lake Superior in an interruption of nature but still a cool sight to behold.

A short one minute drive will bring you to Agawa Indian Crafts, a combination of stores that features handmade art and carvings. The proximity to Batchewana First Nation gives many of its inhabitants to use their hands and sale to thousands of tourists a day. One wing of one of the stores has a large moccasin collection and handmade leather goods. The ice cream stand and camper’s store give families the opportunity to have a break to enjoy a treat.

Pancake Bay Provincial Park consistently ranks on top 5 lists for Ontario Provincial Parks. A magnificent beach, plenty of well treed campsites and plenty of history make this a beautiful park that should not be missed. The only downfall is that some of the sites are located relatively close to the Trans Canada highway.