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Taking the Scenic Route in Northeastern Ontario

Taking the Scenic Route in Northeastern Ontario

Northeastern Ontario boasts some of the best snowmobiling and downhill skiing around. However, for those looking to slow it down, and enjoy the tranquillity of the natural winter world, there is no shortage of areas to strap on a pair of snowshoes or skis and take in Northeastern Ontario’s backcountry- and it usually comes with one heck of a view.

If you find yourself in the North Bay area, you can grab a pair of skis or snowshoes, and follow the trails maintained by the North Bay Nordic Ski Club. And if you visit their website, the club gives you detailed descriptions of the North Bay Nordic Snowshoe Trails, that take snowshoers on adventures through ever-changing landscapes. From hiking right along streams to standing at the base of the High Creek Falls, or even venturing out on the Lookout Loop and being able to see Trout Lake and Lake Nipissing from the impressive vantage point, you’ll be amazed at what you can see without ever having to venture too far from the Nordic Ski clubhouse- just don’t forget your camera to capture all your adventures!

If you head a little farther north, you can find yourself in the Temiskaming area, and there are lots of hotspots to check out for skiing and snowshoe trails. Though there’s probably too many to ever visit in one season, there are some highlights that you should add to your list. One of these highlights is Pete’s Dam Park. Aside from being able to see remnants of the old dam along the trails, you will come across rapids and waterfalls during your trek through the park. If you’re looking for a destination on these trails, aim for Triangle Hill, where you will be able to look out over the northern vistas.

One of the best-known lookouts in Northeastern Ontario is Devil’s Rock. Located just south of Haileybury, this lookout sits 300 feet above Lake Temiskaming. It can be accessed by trail, if you follow Silver Springs Road, just out of the north of the town of Cobalt. The Devil’s Rock Trail will take you to the site, where you can stand on the edge of the world, and try to see the shores of Quebec across the lake. If you keep on north down the trail, you can eventually reach the point where you can look back towards the rock and see just how impressive the natural wonder is. Be sure not to miss out on this one!

If you are experienced in hiking and snowshoeing and want to go farther off the beaten path, you should check out the trail systems that make their way through the ancient old-growth trees of White Bear Forest in Temagami. The White Bear Forest has a rich recorded history surrounding the use and preservation of this forest, and the towering trees are centuries old (and resultantly massive). It is a natural gem to be sure.

Finally travelling even further north into Timmins, you will find extensive ski and snowshoe trails maintained by the Porcupine Ski Runners Club. Like many other ski clubs in Northeastern Ontario, the club rents out skis and snowshoes to those who don’t have their own equipment, so everyone can take part in the activities. You can also take advantage of the well-lighted ski trails to enjoy night skiing- and a perfect opportunity to enjoy the stars and the northern lights, which are often very visible across the Timmins night sky. Don’t forget to check out the events calendar, to see if any competitions or festivals will be happening while you’re there!

Clearly, when it comes to backcountry activities, Northeastern Ontario does not disappoint. It doesn’t matter where you go; you will always be close to trails that will keep you busy exploring our beautiful province. So this winter season, take the scenic route and enjoy what Northeastern Ontario has to offer.

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