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No Longer Grounded—Head North this Summer

Fly fishing outside of Sudbury. Photo: Goh Iromoto
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No Longer Grounded—Head North this Summer

Why Northeastern Ontario is the first place I’m going to visit now that travel is open.

As of June 5, Ontario lodges and vacation rentals were given the go-ahead to start allowing overnight guests to fulfill their fishing and adventure dreams of 2020. 

This has been a long period of reflection for all of us, and although it’s a strange time to navigate, I believe it put into perspective what’s most important to a lot of people. For myself, it was getting to experience as many new things as possible.

With the restrictions easing, I can feel myself breathing easier. The feeling of relief was immediately replaced with planning all of the new skills and experiences I had in mind. 

There are several reasons one should head to Northeastern Ontario, but here’s a list of why I’m not the least bit upset my travel this season so far is limited to my own province.

Not Just Exceptional Fishing 

Cycling had caught my attention because like with fishing, it was a simple way to keep my social circle small while getting outside and enjoying myself. I likened it to paddling and hiking, which are both easily accessed in Northeastern Ontario.

All of the above can be found everywhere in the region, but for cycling, I got stuck on Manitoulin Island. It seemed like the perfect way to explore the largest freshwater island in the world. It’s crystal clear coastlines are just too dreamy to zoom past in a car. 

Adventure for Everyone and Anyone 

Lupins are in full swing and wildlife is more abundant than any other season in Ontario. There's far too much to see in a weekend, but thankfully Northeastern Ontario is the right distance for most for a weekend getaway. If it suits you, the lodges, camping and rentals are opening back up and there are plenty of options to stick around a bit longer. 

Northeastern Ontario is just far enough out of reach, even for its inhabitants, that it offers the right amount of adventure for every personality.

Attractions such as Sudbury's Science North and of course the Polar Bear Habitat in Cochrane all serve the experiential traveller with education, new skills and fun.

More Adventure for Those that Crave It

Paddling, hiking, photography tours, SUPing, and boating are all superb ways to spend your time but don’t forget to soak up all of the North’s splendours. 

A truly underrated experience in the north is the food. Restaurants, bakeries and cafes in the North are all unique in their own way. Scrolling through Instagram alone I’ve come across dreamy poppyseed donuts, a cookie dough cupcake and a gourmet meal fit for a restaurant in downtown Toronto. I’m thankful Beards Bakery is on my way to my chose fishing spot! 


It seems no matter what travel plans I have, fishing will always be the main motivator. For me to scratch that itch and travel responsibly, Northeastern Ontario is the perfect getaway for an angler such as myself. 

Muskie opener is the end all be all reason to take my boat north and begin my season properly. Nothing screams social distancing quite like muskie angling, or rather any angling in the north.

What I’m most excited about is, by choosing to go to Northeastern Ontario, other than a few small details, social distancing hardly changes the trip I'd do on any other year. 

Not Grounded 

I may be restricted to my own province, but I don’t feel grounded. The vastness of the north gives one ample space to branch out, try new things and stay safe during these strange times we all refuse to call our new normal. 

Personally, I can’t wait to return to meandering roads pocked with lake views every few moments, where I can inch towards my normal once again.

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