David Suzuki's Nature Challenge
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Blue Mountain
Blue Mountain
  Central Ontario North is Ontario's outdoor playground stretching from the wilds of Algonquin Park in the east, on through the beautiful lake lands of the Muskoka, then sweeping across the endless
 
sandy shores of southern Georgian Bay, before giving way to the towering dolomite and limestone cliffs of the Bruce Peninsula. The region is located to the north of Toronto and encompasses, from west to east, Bruce County, Grey County, Simcoe County and Muskoka. Map of the Region
 

For those of you living or visiting the Golden Triangle, this is your backyard and one of Canada's very best and most accessible areas for all manner of outdoor pursuits.

Cooks Town
Cookstown
 
Nature lovers and outdoor adventurers of every strip will find exceptional venues for pursuit of their individual passions.
 
Niagara Escarpment Bruce Peninsula
  The Niagara Escarpment winds its way through the heart of the region providing dozens of exceptional areas for nature observation and outdoor adventure. The Bruce Trail, a backpackers dream, follows the Escarpment for hundreds of kilometres and showcases some of the most spectacular scenery in eastern Canada. Perhaps Ontario's best climbing area is Lion's head on the Escarpment cliffs, and certainly some of the provinces' best sea kayaking is done in the Escarpment's shadow. Naturalists point to the Escarpment's unique ecology which provides shelter for a wide variety of flora, including stunted trees along the cliffs believed to be over 1000 years old.
 
The Huron and Georgian Bay shores have some of the east's finest freshwater beaches, with such familiar names as Sauble, Inverhuron and Wasaga. The southern shore of Georgian Bay also has a network of rail trails which are slowly being interconnected, tying together many of these exceptional beach areas.

Snowboarders, cross county skiers and snowshoers have a variety of places to choose from including the resorts at Blue Mountain, Talisman and Horseshoe Valley. Back country skiers and winter campers can take advantage of Algonquin Park or Bruce Peninsula National Park. Day trippers can break trails through the Algomo Highlands.

 
Fall Colours
The Colours of Awenda Provincial Park
  Nature lovers can explore dozens of parks, conservation and wildlife areas. The Wye Marsh and the Escarpment Centers will allow them to get outdoors while adding to their knowledge about their environment. Many of the parks and conservation areas also have beautiful campgrounds in superb natural surroundings. Bruce Peninsula National Park between Lake Huron and Georgian Bay, MacGregor Provincial Park on the shores of Lake Huron, Awenda on Georgian Bay or the (water access only) sites of Beausoliel Island in Georgian Bay National Park are just a few of the regions many possibilities.
 
When one of the big storms hits, the Great Lakes become formidable to navigate, even for large tankers. Many ships have gone down, and other have broken up upon rocky shores. These tragedies have turned the lakes into a diver’s paradise. Scuba divers can easily explore several wrecks off the tip of Tobermory on the Bruce Peninsula in Fathom Five National Marine Park. The area's cold clear waters, combined with the easily accessible wrecks make this one of the best dive spots in the world.
 

Cyclists can choose from a wide variety of routes that follow along some of the less trafficked country roads. Bruce County has laid out seven of these, information is available at Sunsets.com. If you prefer, there are a number of off road cycle paths, most of which are converted rail trails that have no significant grade. These include the 32km Georgian Trail running from Meaford to Collingwood, the Saugeen Rail Trail from Port Elgin to Southampton and the North Simcoe Rail Trail which, when completed will connect Barrie and Midland.

Mountain bikers haven't been forgotten. The region has some of Ontario's' best in the form of the Mansfield Outdoor Centre, Hardwood Hills and the our wicked favorite the Porcupine Ridge Trails just outside of Gravenhurst.

 
Mountain Biking Muskoka
Riding the Shield
 

Hikers will find dozens of access points along the Bruce Trail, allowing them to choose from a wide variety of distances and terrains. There are other trials scattered all over the region, with a heavy concentration in Muskoka outside Bracebridge, Huntsville and Gravenhurst. Most of the Provincial Parks and Conservation Areas have trail systems as well.

Algonquin is best know for its paddling, the park has over 1000km of canoe routes. Outside the park there are three well know river routes in the form of the Saugeen, the Beaver and the Rankin.The shores of Georgian Bay offer Canada's finest inland paddling routes for sea kayakers. From the intermediate routes in the Georgian Bay Islands area to the expert waters off of the Bruce Peninsula.

Algonquin Provincial Park
 
Out-There's Ontario
 
Provincial Parks in Central Ontario North
 
Conservation Areas in Central Ontario North
 
 
 
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Nature Challenge
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  Cycling Toronto Ravines
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