This morning I took you through the basic run down of pre planning for your next canoe/camping trip. This afternoon we are going to walk through picking a campground/campsite for you and your needs using OntarioParks.com.
So for my trip in May as we saw the only campgrounds open are Mew, Tea Lake, and Rock Lake. As easy as this makes my choice campground wise…it also makes my choice that much more difficult because the sites are limited. The biggest problem is finding a site that fits everything you need it for. You need to decide what you are looking for in a site:
- do you need a site for a tent or trailer?
- close to water?
- close to bathrooms?
- water access for your canoes?
- close to camp store?
- any other criteria?
Once you figure out what’s important to you then it makes finding the right site easier. Everyone’s needs are different. For me…typically it’s just me so I don’t need that big of a site however I do need one that’s big enough to fit my truck if I have it. I also prefer a site close to water as I always have my canoe. Being close to the bathrooms is not a draw to me as it’s always busy with traffic.
So…for my trip…I’m looking into going to Mew Lake. Here are my reasons:
- A lake to canoe in
- Access to the Madawaska River…via a road and trail
- Access to trails and camp store
- Rock lake’s sites are very open
- Tea lake’s are small and open
Here is a map of Mew Lake:
See this section here:
It is a dog free and radio free section. That can be both a good thing and a bad thing. The good thing about it is that you don’t need to worry about people being inconsiderate by blaring their radios or dogs getting lose and wondering around. The bad thing is though that you are not supposed to have music playing without headphones. It can make it a little too quiet at times if you like to have your radio playing.
I have camped in this section before and I did enjoy the peacefulness of it. At this time of year the only sites that are going to be busy are the hydro sites so you may get that whole section to yourself. You must keep in mind that you do have different sections when booking a site and hydro sites…will cost more.
For my trip I’m thinking I’m going to go in the radio free section for the fact that it will be more secluded and I will have access to the waterfront with my canoe. Let’s take a more in depth look at that section!
So as you can see on the right here…most of this section is wide open and can be reserved. All the yellow triangles that you see are non-reservable. These are first come first serve only. There are waterfront sites available which makes my life easy if all I want to do is canoe in small Mew Lake. If I wish to canoe somewhere else I will have to either portage my canoe to the Madawaska or put it on my car and drive it to my drop off point. There is a downside to this section…the comfort stations are a fair distance away. Not that I mind but if you were to camp with small children or if you really can’t live without flush toilets it can be a hike. All that I ask is that when you camp in a campground and need to access the comfort stations….please don’t drive unless you absolutely have to!
I’m beginning to have a few second thoughts about Mew lake for the reason that I really can’t canoe anywhere. It’s leading me to consider Rock Lake. I have access to the Madawaska River and can access a couple of portages at the end of the lake…one of which will take me into the town of Whitney on the east side of the park.
I think I’ve found my site…it offers decent privacy…adjacent to the lake…water tap right beside it (will create traffic issues).
That’s it for today. Tomorrow I’m going to do a video blog on planning a canoe trip. A lot of what I’ve put in today for a campground applies…the difference is the process that you have to go through to get to the step of booking. Closer to my date I’ll update you on my Mother’s Day weekend plans by showing you my packing, booking, and the actual trip itself.
~Enjoy your trip!
- Pre-Planning pt 1 (algonquinblog.com)