Ontario Provincial Parks

Discussion in 'Ontario' started by ccptbo, Aug 26, 2013.

  1. JamesRL

    JamesRL New Member

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    Once upon a time, my grandfather managed Ferris, but that was before they had camping, it was day use only then. I spent much time with him there in the 70s.
     
  2. ccptbo

    ccptbo Well-Known Member

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    An Eastern Ontario rally would be loads of fun!
    Right now, DH and I are starting to plan to trips around the province next year. We are definitely going to hit Arrowhead PP in August for a 6-day trip. Anyone have some good electrical or non-elect sites in mind?

    We really enjoyed Ferris PP despite the rain in September. Many folks packed it in early but we hiked in the rain!

    Silent Lake is back on our list. Thoroughly enjoyed that PP.

    Any others have some campgrounds in mind for the upcoming season, all the while withering away the time dreaming of good camp memories....

    Melissa and crew
     
  3. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

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    The last couple of years we have camped mostly in the States, due to not only a decent exchange rate, but also lower camping fee's, cheaper gas and cheaper food costs. We have still done the long weekend trips to either Provincial parks or Conservation areas .. One of our favorites is Grundy Lake, bit of a drive even for us on a long weekend... we have also done Craigleith PP the last couple years on Victoria Day weekend, it's an ok park, small, does sit on the highway, but we have enjoyed it...
     
  4. ccptbo

    ccptbo Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Craig! Good to keep in mind. There are a whole whack on PP's that we have yet to visit. We are definately going to hit some up this coming season! If anyone has any great things (or bad) to say about the following pp's, could you please let us know!! Would make picking them for this year a lot easier! Although we do know that sometimes it's a personal preference (like Sibbald Point...) but any tidbits of info help!

    Sauble Falls
    Craigleith (Thanks Craig!)
    Awenda
    Bass Lake
    Mara
    Earl Rowe
    Six Mile Lake
    Oastler Lake
    Silver Lake
    Sharbot Lake
    Murphy's Point

    Melissa and crew!
     
  5. Storm Trooper

    Storm Trooper Home is where you park it!

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    We stayed at Awenda PP over ten years ago.
    It was the nicest park in our two week trip through Ontario.
    My daughters especially loved it. The chipmunks were so tame, they took peanuts from their hands.
    We went through kilos of peanuts while we were there.
    It is an absolutely spectacular area.
     
  6. ccptbo

    ccptbo Well-Known Member

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    Awenda PP looks beautiful!

    Thanks Storm.
     
  7. Storm Trooper

    Storm Trooper Home is where you park it!

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    You're welcome.
    We happened to make the trip from Port Colborne up to Awenda on Canada Day unwittingly (beginning of a three day weekend).
    It Was a long trip up the 400, bumper to bumper after we past Toronto.
    All in all, it was well worth it.
    We camped on three of the Great Lakes in those two weeks.
     
  8. elsiemon

    elsiemon New Member

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    Hi ccptbo...Concerning Arrowhead have stayed there the last two years. Have stayed at the hydro sites in the East Campground and most of the sites have driveways opening to a circular site. Most are very private. There's a comfort station plus vault toilets, some flushable with a sink and some just the pit. Both of these types were clean and I believe the comfort station is being rebuilt this winter as it was quite old. Just for some info there are at least one flushable vault with sinks on the following roads,1,2,6,7. This is from the 2013 Arrowhead information guide. Bought firewood outside the park, drier and cheaper. If you get a site near the loops at the back they have a path that in a few cases goes right through the site. The pictures on the Ontario Parks site should show these. We camped on the 5th road, starting with site 261 as the comfort station is at the entrance. Try 266 and 304 for starters. Try www.campsitepictures.com for photos. From your list have only been to Awenda at Hawk campground. Liked sites 83,85 and 404. All are electric. We're big fans of the Pinery. Took our children there years ago, beautiful swimming beach but you have to be careful of some sites which just aren't that good. We're retired now so go after Labour Day, no crowds and sometimes there' no one else on the beach. Plus we don't head towards Toronto and all the traffic. Other parks we like are Killbear, Grundy, parts of Restoule and Silent Lake.
    A park I'll never go back to is Mikisew. No privacy, the campground we had was tree trunks, no ground cover and while setting up had to make sure your stuff wasn't on someone else's site. You could sit at the fire pit and see 6 or 7 other fires. For all the hours of driving to get there it wasn't worth it. Hope this helps and enjoy Arrowhead.
     
  9. Snow

    Snow Well-Known Member

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    Couple of other notes on Craigleith.. The "D" loop (I think, exterme right on the map) also have water hook ups at most of the sites (excluding the couple at the end).. Most of the water front sites have trails leading to the water.. There is no beach at the park and they (the park) would prefer no one swims off the rocks... Your Park dash pass will get you into the Provincial run parking lots at Wasaga (short 15 min drive East) free ... best to arrive early in the day, specially in the summer..

    Never stayed here yet... but friends who have stayed and camped many many years at the park have all vowed never to return as some of the enforcement people working at the park have some real power trips ... I don't know the specific details but I know it involves having a group of people on a site (ie. a rally) and making to much noise middle of the day..

    Again never stayed here yet (it's on the list as it is only about an hour from the trailer) but have heard good things about the park.. They some open sites and some wooded sites and the park people sound like they do a good job of accommodating late arrivals...

    Another park we haven't stayed at, and I have read and heard mixed reviews about the park and it's closeness to the highway and train tracks.

    A small jem .. we like the park and it is a excellent place to stay and use as a base for touring around the Parry Sound area ... One down fall is that you do hear the trains running from about 7pm right through until about 8 am.. but we found (and others who have stayed on our recommendation) after the first couple you really don't notice them too much...


    Hope this helps a bit ...
     
  10. Hanvee3

    Hanvee3 New Member

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    AWENDA

    For all these years I have heard glowing reviews about Awenda Provincial Park. Finally went there in September. I was very unimpressed. The water was just so far away from the campground that I am not sure why it is even mentioned in their brochure. It does not compare to some of my favorites such as Bon Echo or Presquile.
     
  11. elsiemon

    elsiemon New Member

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    Just remembered this Arrowhead blog. Quite a lot of information on it. http://arrowheadprovincialpark.wordpress.com/
    Agree with Hanvee3 on the beaches at Awenda. The only nice swimming beach is the farthest from the parking lot to the left. It was quite a walk from the parking lot. Not sure how long to would take from the campsites. The other beaches are full of lots of rocks and round boulders. The sites are for the most part shady with not much ground cover. One park we want to try this year is Charleston Lake. Best of luck.
     
  12. ccptbo

    ccptbo Well-Known Member

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    Good to know!

    Silent Lakes beaches were either a drive or a hilly, long bikeride but well worth it!!
     
  13. ccptbo

    ccptbo Well-Known Member

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    Oooh, I love blogs! Thanks Elsiemon!
     
  14. bols2Dawall

    bols2Dawall S.W. Ontario

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    Went to Craigleith several years ago . Drove in the front gate , looked around , then left for Sauble beach .
    Craigleith was probably the worst P.P. i've seen , the campground is small , right on the highway , no beach , and wide open sites . Not for me . [:(O]
     
  15. durhamcamper

    durhamcamper Active Member

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    Our favorite by far is Pinery. You just can't beat the miles of endless sandy beaches not to mention warm water of Lake Huron. It kills me that a great lake can actually have a decent swimming temperature.
    The only downfall to this park is it's popularity. It's getting near impossible to book a site. I go on-line 15 minutes before the ready time (7:00 a.m.) and have about 6 preferred sites in mind. I watch the clock in the site and have my info ready and hit send at precisely 7:00. For 2 years in a row, someone has managed to beat me to the site and it becomes scramble time. By 7:30 there are no site available. Grrrr!
     
  16. elizabeth583

    elizabeth583 Member

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    We weren't all that taken with Awenda either. We went there a long weekend in 2012 and what we saw of the park was beautiful, but our intent was to spend some time at the beach with our little guy and the beach was at least a 20 minute hike from the parking lot. No biggie for the adults, but a little much for our (then) 4 year old who just wanted to play in the water. There were other beaches closer, but not great swimming as they were too rocky and too rough. Beach #3 was on a little dip in the shoreline and nice and sandy and protected.

    That said, we spend time at certain parks with no regard for the beach condition. MacGregor Point comes to mind. Absolutely gorgeous park, but we don't go there to swim so keep our visits to spring and fall. The hiking trails are just amazing.
     
  17. ccptbo

    ccptbo Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Elizabeth. We've heard that about MacGregor Point! Spring and Fall would be good trips there. Thanks!
     
  18. elizabeth583

    elizabeth583 Member

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    Melissa, if you guys are into hiking at all I highly recommend MacGregor. They have really nice trails, with a big range from super easy to challenging.
     
  19. ccptbo

    ccptbo Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Elizabeth. Yes, we do loads of hiking with the kids. We love Ferris PP in the Spring and Fall. A beautiful park! We also like Silent Lake for this reason.
    Not sure what other PP's are good for the hiking qualities, but we're going to Arrowhead in July for a week. Very much looking forward to that!

    Melissa
     

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