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Algonquin Park Winter

Cross Country Skiing

 

There are several groomed trails along the park's main corridor with over 80km of great skiing awaiting you. The corridor itself is usually well maintained but make sure you check with the park first if the weather is dicey.

  • The Minnising Trail - Beginner, Intermediate

    Off of Hwy 60 in the main corridor in the southern sector of the park. The trail consists of four overlapping loops with distances of 4.7km, 10.1km, 17.1km and 23.4.km. The longest loop will take you north of Canisbay Lake, around Linda Lake and back around the west side of Polly Lake. While some of the trail is made up of flats and rolling hills, the longest loop is arduous unless your in great shape. Along this outer loop here are a number of extended climbs that sap you as the kilometers pile up. This is a wilderness park be prepared, carry appropriate clothing, food, water and tools and never ski alone.

  • Fen Lake - Beginner - Expert

    Just off of the main corridor, Hwy 60, very near the west gate. The trails are a varied mix taking you past Heron Lake to Fen Lake and following Gateway Creek back to the beginning of the loops system. The overlapping loops are 1.25km, 5.2km, 11.4km and 13km in distance.

  • Leaf Lake

    Just inside the east gate this is an extensive trail system with lots of variations. As varied as the trail system the scenery is spectacular shrub, to forest, from lake front to mountain. There are over a dozen possible loops with distances from a few kilometers to over 50km.

For information on cross country ski equipment rentals for the park have a look at our Guides and Outfitters section.


 

Snowshoeing

There is a dedicated snow shoeing trail just off of the Minnising Trail and of course the whole park is open to possibilities. All the trails except the ski trails can be used for snowshoeing. Inquire with the park (or better still help support the Friends of Algonquin by purchasing a trail description - See the Literature section to find trails that are suitable to your skill and fitness level. Of course the rest of the park is accessible too but ensure you have the orienteering skills, map and compass before you venture off trail.

For information on snowshoe rentals for the park have a look at our Guides and Outfitters section.


 

Dog Sledding

A number of outfiits offer dog sledding trips in the park. This is a wonderful way to into the outdoors in winter and to see Algonquin from a totally different perspective. See our Guides and Outfitters section to get details on the tours.

 


 

Winter Camping

If you have the equipment and the inclination you couldn't ask for a better location than the Mew Lake Campground. There are three main ski areas not far from Mew Lake.
You can also camp almost anywhere in the park as long as it's well off the trials, you cannot camp off of the hiking trials. The Uplands Backpacking Trial (Snowshoes) and the Minnissing (XC Skies but you must move well off the trail to pitch your tent) offer excellent opportunities. Ensure you practice no trace camping and leave your itinerary with friends. Remember the temperature can plummet without warning to minus thirty or below in the park, so be prepared. Permits are required, inquire with the park office. Have a look at the Friends of Algonquin website for more information.

The parks main corridor, highway 60 is open during the winter (watch those logging trucks). This provides access to the winter camping, yurts, cross country ski and snow shoeing trails. Several outfitters provide dog sledding in the park.

Yurts of Algonquin

For information on outdoor guiding, instruction or equipment rentals for the park have a look at our Guides and Outfitters section.

For current conditions, along with definitive information on the park, contact the park authorities. For regional information check with the local chambers of commerce and tourism offices. Outdoor shops, outfitters and clubs in the vicinity of the park may be other excellent sources of information.

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