Late-spring conditions delay park openings, reduce services

There are fewer camp sites up for grabs than usual this long weekend.

There are fewer camp sites up for grabs than usual this long weekend.

Ontario Parks reports most of its facilities east of Sleeping Giant are closed owing to late spring conditions. The Hattie Cove campground at Pukaskwa National Park is also closed.

In Thunder Bay, parks supervisor Gordon John said the Chippewa and Trowbridge Falls campgrounds are open — the condition of the sites varies.

Outdoor lovers planning long-weekend camping trips have fewer options than usual. (CBC)

"The ones that get lots of sun are in pretty good shape. The ones that have lots of trees around and the sun doesn't get to still have snow inside the bush area but most campsites are open."

Ontario Parks were supposed to open on May 6, but this year, back country camp sites and most parks east of Sleeping Giant won't open until until May 23.

The natural heritage education and marketing specialist for the Northwest Zone of Ontario Parks, Barb Rees, said water systems at the parks that are open may not be fully functional this weekend.

"Some may be on a boil-water order, some may not have the comfort stations up and running and you'll have to use the outhouses instead," she said.

"[At] some parks the water system may affect the flush toilets, and it may also affect the showers."

Rees said campers can check whether parks are open or closed on-line.

Parks affected by the late spring conditions are:

  • Lake Superior Rabbit Blanket campground
  • MacLeod
  • Neys
  • Ouimet Canyon (Day use)
  • Quetico back country
  • Rainbow Falls
  • Wabakimi
  • White Lake
  • Woodland Caribou
  • Lake Superior's Interior

Parks that will be open on the long weekend are:

  • Aaron 
  • Blue Lake
  • Lake Superior  Agawa Bay campground
  • Pakwash
  • Quetico's Dawson Trail Campground
  • Sandbar Lake
  • Sleeping Giant
  • Kakabeka Falls
  • Caliper Lake
  • Sioux Narrows
  • Rushing River

For anyone planning on partying, there is an alcohol ban in the city campgrounds — as well as Blue Lake, Rushing River, Sleeping Giant, Arrow Lake, and Silver Falls.


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