Sibbald Point Provincial Park – Review

Review Date: Sept 2016

General Information / Location / Address

Sibbald Point Provincial Park is located on the south east side of Lake Simcoe.

26071 York Rd 18 (Park Road)
Sutton West
L0E 1R0

Click here to reserve, or view campsites

SP.Overview

Entry / Layout

As you turn East into the park, you are faced with a fork in the road.  Keep LEFT if you are buying a day pass, and keep RIGHT if you are registering your campsite.  As you can see from the pic below, there is TONS of room to park your rig, as you head into the office.  There is a center booth for day passes, and a large office for registering.  Sibbald is split into quite a few areas, and I’m not going to list them here.  You can see those areas in the above map.  Each site does have their own bathrooms, so I think you can rely on the fact that there is a running water bathroom near by.  Some of the area’s are electric, and some are not, as you can see above.  As you drive through the campground area, you get into the beach/park area, and the historical areas.

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General Discussion

The park is made up of fairly thick forest.  Some campsites have thick brush, and other sites have larger trees and a brushless forest.  It’s really spotty, but if you look at the campsite pictures on the Ontario Parks website, you’ll get a good idea of the kind of bush you’ll see around your site.  Most of the sites are typical forest floor, and not grassy.

We stayed in Beavermeade, so I’ll talk about that area first.  As you enter, the bathrooms on are the right, along with a small play ground and sand box.  Across the road from the area, is a large grassy field.  The road going into Beavermeade is gravel, and the sites are mainly forested, with light brush.  Some of the inner sites have far less brush, making them slightly less private. The sites along the outside are fairly private. Don’t fear camping along the east side of Beavermeade, along the main road, as there is a line of pine bushes that create great privacy.  There is one path on the north side of Beavermeade that cuts through to the beach and park area.  As well, there a couple of holes in the pine bushes that head to the main road.  The sites here are a medium size.  The bathrooms at Beavermeade were large, and clean, so I can expect the rest of the bathrooms to be the same.

The campsites in Horseshoe line the grassy playing field, and some of them have a path into the playing field.  I took a bike ride through Hardwoods, and the majority of the sites seemed kinda small.  Not sure what else to say about this area. Same for the CedarGrove and Meadowlands.  Across the main road is the non electric sites, and I only briefly drove through this area.  Can’t really comment here.

The beach!  It’s LONG, and the water is fairly shallow, which is great for the kids.  It’s also roped off, and has a couple rock points that jet out (you’ll see what I mean in the pictures).  There is TONS of parking for the beach area, but the one thing I’ve heard is during the summer, people use this beach as a day use beach, and it gets VERY busy (you can see those type of comments in the tripadvisor area below).  There is two parking lots for the beach, so if one is busy, try the other lot.  The beach area has grassy areas with a ton of picnic tables, and bbq’s and even a few picnis shelters that are reservable.  It’s really neat that it’s not only a beach, but a park as well.  There is a main bathroom on the east side of the beach.  The beach sand does have golf ball sized rocks in it, and that continues for the first 5 feet of water, where the rocks disappear, and it’s sandy again.  There is also a lot of natural shade on the beach, from the nearby tall trees.  We didn’t have to take out our beach umbrella’s at all.  The dog area is on the east side of the beach, and is basically a large grassy area right up against the water.  Easy for dogs to walk in and out.  Still a great area for people to relax as their dogs play in the water.  The beach is really nice here!

Here’s a good panoramic view of the beach and picnic area. (click below pic)

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There is a really large playground at the beach.  It also has swings.  Kids will love it here!

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There is a boat launch, and docks as well.

There is an amphitheater, where they do activities for kids.  We camped in September and didn’t get to see anything, but I’d guess they have great events here.

The park officers do drive by on a regular schedule.

I didn’t get to the park store, but across the road is a store that sells variety type stuff, and firewood.  Kinda smells in there tho.

Heritage / Historical areas – This isn’t really my forte, but I hear there is great history here, with historical buildings, and churches, which are now museums.  The main museum was closed when we camped, but make sure you check out the main museum, and church. I hear it’s worth walking through

Best Campsites

For trailer sites, we liked the campsites in Beavermeade.

Here’s a panoramic photo of our site 927. (click photo)

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It’s the closest to the beach for electric sites.  If you are not in an electric site, I would suggest the northern most sites in Lakeside and Butternut.  There are foot paths that lead to the parking lot, and would be a quick walk to the water.

Hiking / Biking

I didn’t hike any of the trails, but looking at the trail guide, this isn’t really a hiking or biking park.

Pro’s

BEACH and Picnic areas!

Historical buildings

Playground at the beach is awesome! and huge!

Con’s

Hiking trails, and biking trails are at a minimum

Surrounding Area Activities

I would suggest driving Hedge Road (right from the park) and other Lakeshore roads, all the way to Keswick.  It’s such a beautiful drive, and the road follows the lake almost the whole way there.  Check it out!

Conclusion

A good park!  The beach area is great, and am still really amazed but the amount of picnic area in front of the beach.  As well, there is an abundance of full water bathrooms, with one right at the beach.  The campsites were OK, with a lot of them electric.  I’m a little weary about how busy this place would be in the midst of summer tho.

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Pinery Provincial Park Review – Dunes

Review Date: Coming May 2016

General Information / Location / Address

Pinery Provincial Park is located in Southwestern Ontario, on the shores of Lake Huron. It is a fairly large park, and also fairly popular. It’s my GO-TO park, as it’s one of the closest to me. We usually go here for a weekend at the very start of the season, to make sure our camping gear is all IN-CHECK. This review will focus on the Dunes section of Pinery only.

The Pinery Provincial Park
R.R.# 2
Grand Bend, Ontario
N0M 1T0
(519) 243-2220

Click here to reserve, or view campsites


View Larger Map

 PI.DuneOverview

Entry / Layout

General Discussion

Best Campsites

Hiking / Biking

Pro’s

Con’s

Surrounding Area Activities

Conclusion

Algonquin Provincial Park – Pog and Kearney Lakes

Review Date: July 2015

General Information / Location / Address

Algonquin Provincial Park is located… I don’t even think I need to state where this is located, as it’s the most popular park, and everyone knows where it is.  This review is about Pog and Kearney Lake campsites, which is located within Algonquin Park.  It’s located on the middle-eastern end of highway 60.

Click here to reserve, or view campsites

PG.Overview

Entry / Layout

Right off highway 60 (be careful because the turning lane is fairly short), is Pog and Kearney Lakes campground.  The park office is right at the front.  The parking lot is after the park office.  So stop at the stop sign, then continue on to the parking lot, where you park then walk back to the office.  There is no dogs allowed in the park office.  There is ample room to park in the parking lot.

Pog Lake is devided into 3 campgrounds.  Two of them are electric sites, and the one is non-electric.  Each campground has ample vault toilets, and one full service bathroom.  The campgrounds surround an area of Pog Lake, however, unfortunately it’s the worst area of the lake.  The best part of Pog Lake is the North.  It’s the largest, and the deepest.  The south side is ALMOST swampy like.  Although still a beauty.  The main beach is located on the north side of Campground A.

General Discussion

Obviously being in Algonquin Park, this campground is in the middle of a forest, surrounding Pog Lake.  All sites have a forest bed, mostly all covered in pine needles.  The majority of the tree’s here are pine tree’s.  The forest does have some decent shrubbery, but it still doesn’t have enough to make any of the sites private.  You can see through the bush, and for the most part, right into your neighbors site.  Not necessary a bad thing, as depending on what site you are on, you can position your gear to block neighbors.

Campground A  is where I stayed, and will commend most on it.  We booked this campground because it has a few sites that neighbor to the water.  We were thinking we could walk to the back of our site, and swim.  That’s not the case.  Campsites 140 to 128 have a good view of the water, but the water is not swimmable.  It’s fairly swampy here.  It’s great for a canoe or kayak landing.  Each site in this area has a path to the water, and there is a public path between sites 138 and 140.  The best site here for a view is site 130.  It has an amazing view of the lake.  It’s up fairly high from the lake, but there is a steep path to get down to the lake.

The road through Campground A has some up’s and downs (hills).  But nothing a large trailer couldn’t get through.  One thing to note.  There is no “one way” signs here, but the majority of the sites are catered to trucks travelling in the COUNTER CLOCKWISE direction.  The driveways to the sites are angled a bit, and if you’re not facing the proper direction, it’s harder to backup into the site.  When coming into Campground A, I suggest turning LEFT after campsite 157.  Then go down to the end, and turn left or right depending on where your site is.

Regarding sites 124 to 116.  There is a LARGE, and STEEP drop-off to the lake here.  It’s definitely passable tho.  These sites have a GREAT view of the water, but they aren’t very DEEP.  Any trailers would need to be parked parallel to the road.  124 is probably your best bet on this side of the lake.  Some of the sites here even have a fence because of how steep the drop-off is.

Some of the sites on the outer ring, 154 – 128 are fairly unlevel.  If the site is level overall, it may still have some unlevel dips, or holes in the middle of them.  I would suggesting bringing some boards, as you may need to prop a tire up on the trailer.  Another suggestion, if your site is fairly unlevel, I suggest disconnecting your Weight Distribution Hitch before maneuvering into the site.  That way if your truck and trailer are unlevel, it will be easier to disconnect the WDH.  As well, there are some sites that have tree’s in the middle of them, so be careful backing in, etc, etc

I also noticed that sounds carry throughout this park.  I can hear people talking a few sites down.  Could be because of the type of open forest.

The beach here is GREAT!  Nice and wide, deep, and all sandy.  I think they recently re-did the beach.  There is a roped off swimming area as well.  Sites 109 – 112 are right across from the beach.  These sites offer 0 privacy, but it’s really beautiful down here, especially right across from a beach.  See my photosphere below for a full 360 view of what it’s like.

There is a full service bathroom here, with a grass field beside it for any sports that want to be played.

The dumping station is off highway 60, just WEST of Pog Lake.

I didn’t see a park store here.

I noticed that the “Park Warden” says “W.P.S. Park Warden” on the truck.  Most Provincial Parks I’ve been to have Ontario Parks trucks.  I think this park is operated by another company, and just under contract by Ontario Parks.  I noticed this park seems to have some rules that other parks don’t have, including no dogs in the park office.  I also noticed that the W.P.S Park Warden drives by a lot.  Even during the day. They all seem to be friendly, and not trigger happy on violations, but do give warnings.  This place almost felt like a private campground, instead of an Ontario Parks campground. I don’t know if that’s good or bad.  Just want to mention it.

Algonquin Park is a very touristy park.  You will find new campers here, and old campers here.  It’s also a well used campground.  Not sure what that means, but keep it in mind.

They do rent out 30 amp electrical cords if you need them.  $50 holding fee, and $3 per night.  They are 25ft long.

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Below is site 130IMG_20150704_151020 IMG_20150704_135923

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Here is a photosphere of the water behind site 138

Click on the below picture to open a 360 PHOTOSPHERE in GOOGLE MAPSPANO_20150704_144938

Here is a photosphere of the beach area.

Click on the below picture to open a 360 PHOTOSPHERE in GOOGLE MAPSPANO_20150705_161740

Best Campsites

-Site 140 is really large, but has some tree’s at the entrance.  Not sure you can put a trailer through them into the back part of the site

-138 is kinda small, and have a moderate pad slope.

-134 does NOT have a view of the lake.  Too many tree’s blocking it

-132 has a view of the lake, but kinda OPEN.

-130 is amazing. Large, great view of lake

-129 good lake view

-128 is kinda small. good view of lake

-124-117 see above.  not very deep. good view of lake

-127 not very good

-126 is HUGE.  but really open, no privacy.  Good view of lake.

-349-354 nice views of the lake.  Really big.  But right across from vault toilet

Hiking / Biking

Old Railway Trail – This is a FLAT, WIDE trail that goes between Rock Lake/Coon Lake, and Mew Lake.  It’s a VERY easy ride, with no hills.  The path is very smooth, and VERY easy to bike.  It’s such a nice trail.  We went from Pog lake, past Lake of Two Rivers, and almost to Mew Lake.  The section from Lake of Two Rivers, and Mew lake was kinda boring.  It was very hot and dry here.  But the rest of it goes through a nice forest, and behind Lake of Two Rivers.  We found a nice natural beach, right at the back of Lake of two Rivers.  So lookout for this path.

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Below is a photosphere of the beach area:

Click on the below picture to open a 360 PHOTOSPHERE in GOOGLE MAPSPANO_20150705_114025

Pro’s

-Algonquin Park.  It’s beautiful here, and the drive through highway 60 is awesome!

-I like the Pine Forest.  Tree’s are very tall

-Really nice beach area

-Old Railway Trail is a nice easy bikeride

Con’s

-W.P.S?  Kinda strange.  Seems like a private park?

-Forest is kinda open

-The lake is nice, but the area that the campsites surround is unswimmable.  Would be nice to swim right behind your campsite.

Surrounding Area Activities

Algonquin Logging Museum – This place is awesome.  Gives you a great perspective of what logging WAS like, and what it IS like.  And it’s all free!

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A couple photospheres of the logging museum.

Click on the below pictures to open a 360 PHOTOSPHERE in GOOGLE MAPSPANO_20150705_132348 PANO_20150705_135103 PANO_20150705_135320

 

 

Conclusion

It’s Algonquin Park.  It’s a must visit, at least once.  The park was nice.  We really enjoyed the beach area, and the Old Railway Trail.  The forest was neat, even tho it was open.  We enjoyed camping beside a lake.  The park was a bit noisy, and very busy.  I would suggest researching other activities to do in the park.  There are TONS of trail in Algonquin, so go research, and do some hiking during the day.  If you’re going to drive all the way to Algonquin, mise well see all the amazing sites.  Also keep your eyes open for Moose in the swamps nearby highway 60.

TripAdvisor Reviews

 

 

Arrowhead Provincial Park Review

Review Date: Review coming July 2015

** I’ve included some PHOTOSPHERES in this review.  PHOTOSPHERES are the pictures with “Nate Meyer – View on Google Maps” in the top left corner.  You can use your mouse, and drag 360 degrees around the picture **

General Information / Location / Address

Arrowhead Provincial Park is located just west of Algonquin, and north of Huntsville.  It’s located right along highway 11.  Such a beautiful area, full of lakes, cottages, and trees!  (But not too far from the big city amenities you might need).

Click here to reserve, or view campsites

Entry / Layout

AR.Overview

The entry to the park is right off Highway 11, just north of Huntsville.  It’s a nice paved road, winding through hills, and around Mayflower lake.  After a km or two, you enter the front gate.  Similar to other parks, you park your vehicle in the parking lot, and enter the office.  Arrowhead lake is devided into 4 campgrounds, as seen above.  Each campground is designed differently, which may be confusing and take a little longer to get familiar with.  There are full bathrooms in each campground, usually at the center of each.  The campgrounds surround the south  and west sides of Arrowhead Lake.  The park is fairly large, but all the amenities, and trails are concentrated together, making it easy to explore everything!

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General Discussion

Arrowhead Provincial Park is in the middle of a fairly thick forest, and huddles tight to Arrowhead Lake.  The main road coming in, and connecting the individual campsites is wide, and paved.  It does travel up and down some large hills, so make sure your truck is in the proper gear.  Depending on which area you are going to, you will cross a beautiful bridge showing you the awesome Arrowhead Lake.  The roads going to each campsite are all gravel, and the base of the campsites are mostly forest floor.

I’ll talk about Roe Campground first, as that’s where I spent the most time.  As the paved road comes in, it splits up into 7 gravel roads, with a turn-around at the end, which ends up near the central washroom.  This is a decent design, as the center of all roads is connected with a trail.  One thing to note, if you have a large trailer, your only turn around would be these loops at the end of each road.  They are fairly large, but just use caution.  I also noticed this area has A LOT of pot holes, and they are deep.  The majority of the campsites here are very private, and spacious.  There is a lot of forest spacing between sites, which really helps with the privacy.  Road 7 has a parking lot at the end, which is right at the beach.  (Again just be cautious of trailer size).  There is a trail at Roe that goes right to the beach, and to the Big Bend.  I would suggest getting a site close to the loops on roads 1 or 6.  As then it’s just a short walk to the beach.  There are poison ivy signs on the majority of the loops.  If you want to be near the full services washrooms, then camp nearer to the loops, as there’s trails that will head to washrooms.  There are also “vault” toilets scattered throughout Roe, but these are not your typical vault toilets.  They have water hookups, which all real toilets to be in them, and a concrete floor. There are no smells, and 500% better then a vault toilet.

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I didn’t even go into East River, so can’t comment on what the sites are like.  I did take a walk to Lumby North and Lumby South.  It’s a neat area, as the canopy of the trees completely covers the sun, and it really seems like you’re camping in a dark, mysterious forest.  I can’t really comment much about this area, but picking a sight closest to the beach is always a good idea!  The below photosphere is a road inside Lumby.

Click on the below picture to open a 360 PHOTOSPHERE in GOOGLE MAPSPANO_20150702_121720

Arrowhead Lake isn’t huge, but it’s not small either.  It’s surrounded by deep, thick vegetation, but has 3 distinguished beach areas, and 1 dog exercise area.  The beach on the EAST, closest to Roe, has a large sand dune type hill to walk down before getting to the beach.  The beach is large enough to hold a lot of people, and it’s ALL sand.  Water access is also all sand.  Below is a photosphere showing what this beach looks like:

Click on the below picture to open a 360 PHOTOSPHERE in GOOGLE MAPS2015-07-02(1)

The SOUTH beach is also all sandy, and really long.  There’s a parking lot just above that can hold a lot of cars.  The beach on the EAST side of the lake is a little smaller, but is still a really nice beach.  For a Muskoka lake.. these beaches are fantastic!  The water stays shallow enough for the kids to play, but then get’s deep enough for everything else.
The dog exercise area is out of the way, but accessible by car.  There’s a big enough parking lot for 10-15 cars, but be careful as there are dogs running around in the parking lot.  It has 2 areas of water access, where the dogs can run into the water.  It’s also a suitable spot for pet owners to relax on the beach, while their dogs run around.  I backed my truck right up to the water, and sat on the beach.  It’s also very swimmable here as well.  The floor of the beach isn’t as sandy as the real beaches, but does the trick.  Look below for a PHOTOSPHERE of the dog exercise area:
Click on the below picture to open a 360 PHOTOSPHERE in GOOGLE MAPS

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Below is a parking lot for one of the beaches.

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The below is the Dog Beach, and the picture below that is the parking lot.  There is an additional water access spot to the right.

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 I noticed the Park Officers drive by twice starting around 5pm.  So it’s patrolled, but not overly.

The park store is located right after the office, and it has the traditional park store stuff in it.  Not much candy, but does have chips, pop, and ice cream sandwhiches.  I didn’t buy any firewood here, but there is lots of it!
Make sure you take a walk down to the CENTER of the park.  This is where the road bridge is, and the foot bridge.  It really is beautiful.  There is ample parking here, and two beaches on either side.  You can rent water craft here as well.  It’s just a beautiful spot to sit and relax.  You’ll also see people fishing off the rocks under both bridges.  I didn’t notice any playgrounds for kids, but maybe I just missed it.
Just inside the park, is a road to the Park Amphitheater.  We didn’t see any services here, but check the Park calendar, and go check it out.  Here’s a Amphitheater PHOTOSPHERE:
Click on the below picture to open a 360 PHOTOSPHERE in GOOGLE MAPS
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The Trailer dumping station is located at the entrance to East River.  There is two spots for dumping, and two spots for filling fresh water.  Lots of room here for trailers.  PHOTOSPHERE:

Click on the below picture to open a 360 PHOTOSPHERE in GOOGLE MAPS2015-07-04(1) 2015-07-04

Best Campsites

I can only speak for Roe campground here.  I don’t have specific site numbers, but all sites are fairly private.  Best is to get one closest to the EAST beach area.  The trail to the beach is on Road 1, at the end (loop).

Hiking / Biking

Here is the link to the hiking and biking trails at the park

Arrowhead Lake Trail – This trail is 4.5km long, and goes around Arrowhead Lake.  We hiked it started at Roe campground.  It was a great trail that gave good views of the lake.  We thought we’d find a private swim spot on the trail, but there is not.  This trail is great for biking, or hiking.  There are some steep spots where you might need to walk your bike up or down.  The trail is wide enough for 4 bikes wide.  This trail can be caught from any parking lot, or right from Roe or Lumby campsites. Below are some pics of the trail:

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Big Bend Lookout – This isn’t really a hiking trail, but more of a path to a scenic lookout of a huge sand dune bend in the river.  There is a nice board walk to view from.  Worth the look!  It has a parking lot for 5-6 cars.  Here’s my PHOTOSPHERE of the lookout:

Click on the below picture to open a 360 PHOTOSPHERE in GOOGLE MAPSPANO_20150703_082617

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Mayflower Lake Trail – This is a 1km trail that winds along beside Mayflower Lake.  It’s a more rugged trail, and is only a pathway wide.  There are some steep area’s, but really nothing too hard.  I recommended it!  Here’s a PHOTOSPHERE of a spot I found on the trail:
Click on the below picture to open a 360 PHOTOSPHERE in GOOGLE MAPS2015-07-04


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Beaver Meadow Trail – This trail was closed when I was visiting the park.
Stubb’s Falls Trail – This trail starts at the center of the park (near the 2 bridges), and winds along south of the river to Stubb’s Falls.  It’s a beautiful area, with a great scenic water fall.  The trail then continues north of the river, back to the starting point.  The SOUTH part of the trail is smooth, and wide, and really easy to bike. You can even use a stroller on it. The north part of the trail is a little narrower, and rockier / rootier. There are some some elevation changes and mud holes.  It’s worth the hike, but if you have a bike, or stroller, stick to the south part of the trail.  If you don’t want to take the trail at all, there is a parking lot in East River that’s very close to the falls. As well, be careful on the stairs down to the falls. They are steep, and metal.
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Pro’s
-Beautiful lake, with awesome lake beaches
-LOT’S of trails to keep you busy and in shape!
-A great waterfall to view
-It’s in a great area, close to a big city if need be
-Awesome “vault” toilets

Con’s

-Pot holes!

Surrounding Area Activities

Conclusion

This was a great park!  There are a lot of activities, and trails here.  The beach areas are fantastic.  The dog beach is a great area also.

TripAdvisor Reviews

Port Burwell Provincial Park Review

Review Date: Sept 2014 

**New for this review – A Bike ride through the park!**

I filmed myself riding through each area in the park.  I thought this would give you a great sense of what the park is like, etc.  Find the 3 videos below

General Information / Location / Address

Port Burwell Provincial Park is located on the shore of Lake Erie, directly beside the town of Port Burwell.

9 Wilson Lane
Port Burwell, ON, N0J 1T0

Click here to reserve, or view campsites

Entry / Layout

PB.Overview

Port Burwell has 2 different entrances for the park, and the beach.  The first entrance goes past a few cottages, then you reach the front office.  The second entrance has it’s own “front office”, which leads to the day use beach areas.

The park is split into 3 campgrounds.  Alzora, Leander, and Iroquois.  Each campground has their own full service bathroom in the center.  There is also a large playing field, and another bathroom between Leander and Alzora.

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General Discussion

pbppforest

First, take a look at the above picture.  This is the satellite image of Port Burwell Provincial Park.  (You can also see the big play field, more on that later).  I wanted to show this picture because it shows the type of landscape / foliage you’ll encounter when coming here.  The forest is thick, which in most cases offers a lot of privacy.  Most of the campgrounds I’ve encountered on Lake Erie are more grass then anything, but not here.  You really get the sense that you are camping up north in a fully mature forest.  However, when you venture to the beach, you’ll know you’re on Lake Erie because of the soft sand and great beach.  Not often do you get to camp in a thick forest with a great beach.  On the West side of the campground, there is a large cavern like creek, with a few campsites right on it’s banks.  More on that later.

Port Burwell PP is split into 3 campsites.   Alzora, Leander, and Iroquois.  We stayed in Iroquois because it seemed to be the furthest away from cottages and roads, etc.  Iroquois is at the back of the campground, and think it’s the quietest, and feels more remote then the other.  The campsites throughout the whole park are all fairly large, and private.  They all seem to have wide road front, instead of that long drive way type of site.  The floor of the sites are mostly grass and forest floor.  I didn’t see any that were gravel, which IMO is good.

One small issue, is the roads throughout the campgrounds are all paved.  This isn’t a huge issue, but sometimes driver drive faster when the roads are paved.  However, it does keep the dust down when they are paved.

I will say that the forest is fairly brushy, almost like a jungle, which is great for Privacy, but I much prefer a forest that’s a little more bare.  Yes it’s less privacy, but it just seems more Northy to me.  The sites that offer this barer type forest are 95 to about 206.

Speaking of the back of Iroquois.  If you look at the above google maps satellite image, you can see at the top a farmers field.  This field is fairly close to the top edge of the campsites, and two times we heard coyotes howling right here.  It sounded incredible, and worth the listen.  One time it was 5am, and the other was 9pm.  Now that I think of it.. maybe watch your children and small dogs if you camping up in that area.

There are full service bathrooms at the center of each area.  There is also a bathroom by the large playing field. One thing you won’t find here are those smelly vault type toilets in the middle of every other campsite.

One great thing about this park is the large playing field in the center.  It offers a great jungle gym for the kids, and 2 volley ball nets.  It also has a large area to play soccer, and even baseball.  This is also where the Amphitheater is located.  There are a couple great sites basically right beside the playing field, which would be great for family’s with children.  I believe I have labelled them in my below videos.

I’m not too familiar with what activities this park offers, but I assume because of the Amphitheater in the park, there are lots of events catered to children.

The park seemed really tidy and clean.  All the sites were properly groomed / drained of water.  All the bathrooms were all clean.  It seems they really know what their doing here.  They strive for a clean, well run park.

The beach is really long.  There’s LOTS of room for all campers to setup, and have it not be so crowded.  There’s also LOTS of parking.  One thing I noticed is that the beach is not groomed, and inside the magazine for Port Burwell PP, they explain why.  I also didn’t notice a lot of loose sand on the beach, but more hard packed sand.  I think this is because the water level has been so high.  Getting into, and out of the water is a cinch.  It remains fairly shallow as you walk out.  There is a bit of a walk from the parking lot to the beach, which is kind of a pain, but such as life.

The dog beach is the best dog beach around.  It’s HUGE!  Lots of room to run the dogs into the water, playing fetch, etc.  However, there are signs everywhere of a $95 fine if dog is off leash.  I saw about 50% of the dogs off leash when I went, and even kept my dogs off leash, and didn’t have a problem.

At the front office is a small park store, where you can buy camping essentials, and some munchies.  There’s not a lot of stuff here, but gets the job done if you’re looking to snacks.  Same type of store at the entrance to the day use areas.  Coffee comes from an instant coffee machine, with those coffee pucks / packs.  $2 per coffee.   Firewood is also for sale at the front gates for about $7 a bag.  It’s all covered in it’s own building, but even so I noticed that some of the wood was a little damp when burning.  I also couldn’t chop a log in half, which means it could still be a little wet. Quality of the wood when I went wasn’t amazing.

The camp warden does drive through, but only saw him/her once an evening.  However for whatever reason, I did see an OPP SUV drive through once as well.

I’m not sure how the bugs are here in general, but this weekend the mosquito’s were terrible!  They were EVERYWHERE, and ANYWHERE.  They did disappear around 8pm tho.  I don’t think Port Burwell is bad for mosquito’s in general, but for whatever reason, this weekend was BAD.

One thing worth mentioning, is they have new Dumping stations for trailers.  It’s can accommodate two trailers at once, which is great on those busy Sunday’s when everyone is leaving.  As well, there’s a new trailer filling station, right on the side of the road, that can also accommodate 2 trailers.


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Hiking / Biking

Here’s a list of all the trails at Port Burwell.  It also contains some of the other activities that are available in the park.  I planned to walk all the trails, but because of the mosquito’s, never got around to it.  I included the parks description of the trails below

Ravine Creek Trail 1 km, 45 minutes, easy
 (This interpretive trail, which features a self-guided brochure, travels through a ravine and woodlot. Eleven stops along the way explain local geology, flora and fauna.)

Beach Trail 2 km return, 1 hour, easy  (
The trail leads from the campground to the beach. A lookout point provides an excellent view of Lake Erie and the beach below. The trail traverses a 20 m bluff.)

A Bike Ride through the Park!

To give you a better aspect on what this park is like, I created 3 videos of me riding through each area.  Here they are below:

Iroquois:

Leander:

Alzora:

Best Campsites

IMO, the best area is Iroquois, campsites 95 to 206.  Sites 31,33,35 are neat because they are right on the backs of a large revine. (Careful of the drop-off).

197,196 – Large sites, decent privacy

198 OK

200 is good.  With a trailer you can make it fairly private

201, 203 is OK

206 is really big, kinda private. Bigest site I’ve seem

210, 211, 212 right across from bathroom. MEH

218 really private.  really bushy.  shrubs. can’t see big tree’s. doesn’t remind me of up north

172 is kinda nice, really big. nice forest

178 OK

Pro’s

– Very clean, well kept up park.  Staff spend a great deal of time and energy on this park.

– Lots of full service bathrooms

– Sites are LARGE, and mostly private

– Beach is great, with great water entry

– Thick forest. Nice sized tree’s. Mature forest

– Great playing field

Con’s

– Buggy?

– Beach is a drive, not a walk

Surrounding Area Activities

Project Ojibwa – A really cool tour of a retired submarine.  This is located in the neighboring town of Port Burwell.  It’s worth going to see, but it’s $18.50 to go in. Kinda steep.

Should you camp here?

Totally YES!.  Port Burwell deserves your business here.  The park shows that the staff strive to keep it clean, and ready for you to camp.  The beach is great, with lots of parking.  The sites are all large, and private.  It’s really a great park!