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Old 06-02-2013, 08:23 PM   #1
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Maiden voyage: Bon Echo P.P. Ontario

DW & I just got back from weekend on beautiful Mazinaw Lake. First trip in our Rockwood Mini-Lite 1905. Every thing in it worked, only a few minor issues. Campsites there are beautiful and reasonably private. Ours was steps from the beach. Nearest neighbour was about 150' away. Power pedestal was shared, so 75' away! I believe it is like that in all Ontario P.P.'s so keep that in mind if you're planning a trip here. We had to buy a 25' extension. Weather was unsettled, got some rain Sat. just after I got the awning up. Almost left it stowed, but decided to make sure we knew how to work it. Glad we did! Not quite so lucky this afternoon. Got all packed up, awning was almost dry when stowed but it POURED when we were hooking up to TV. Will try to get some pics up this week.

Thanks again to all the folks who helped me with my noob questions! Great folks here on FR forum!

Norm
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Old 06-02-2013, 08:29 PM   #2
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Power pedestal was shared, so 75' away! I believe it is like that in all Ontario P.P.'s so keep that in mind if you're planning a trip here.
Yes, that's the norm and the reason why I carry a total of 100' in power cord.

Glad to hear that everything went well.

Dave
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Old 06-02-2013, 09:07 PM   #3
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Thanks Dave.

We didn't realize just how much we missed camping. Once the children stopped wanting to come with us, we just kinda stopped. Last year tenting on Manitoulin was such a gas but made us realize we needed a step up. Don't know if you can call it camping with a hotel room on wheels though.
Despite the weather, it was totally relaxing and it's a great way for me & DW to reconnect in the "empty nest" years. With retirement around the corner we think we know how we're going to spend some of that free time.
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Old 06-02-2013, 09:37 PM   #4
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Oh Dave, I thought of something I wanted to ask you. What's your experience with private campgrounds in Ontario? I'm sure there are some great and some not so great and research needs to be done. All our camping has been in P.P.'s and one can be reasonably sure of the standards and preference comes down to what geography you enjoy.
Have you any experience with Green Acres in Waterloo? It looks great on their web site and I have family in the area. Also, municipal campgrounds intrigue me. The one in Owen Sound looks promising and I've seen web sites for a few in Quebec that might be nice.
Your insights are appreciated.
Norm
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Old 06-02-2013, 10:14 PM   #5
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We have friends that stay at Green Acres in Waterloo on their way back from the south. They are always commenting on how great the park is. It all depends what you are looking for in a park that will determine if you would like it or not. I personally prefer KOA campgrounds. They are usually a bit more expensive but KOA have standards that the CG must meet. I have never had any luck in finding a nice CG in Quebec. We were at a CG in Quebec told the person in the office that we had a dog. They said it was not a problem and they were pet friendly. After paying for the site they informed us that the dog had to be kept on our site and could not be walked anywhere in the park.
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Old 06-02-2013, 10:25 PM   #6
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What's your experience with private campgrounds in Ontario?
Sorry but I can't answer your question...we haven't camped at any private campgrounds in Ontario. Any that I've seen tend to have the sites very close together, no privacy and not what we'd like in a campground.

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Old 06-02-2013, 10:38 PM   #7
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Milady and I tend to prefer rustic, forested sites near water unless for convenience as with Green Acres or municipal CG's as a base for exploring a new area or an overnight stay. Am I right in thinking that my best bet for rustic CG's are the provincial parks? We have 10 days at Killbear and 10 days at Inverhuron this year. Looking to book the first week in Sept. maybe Bon Echo again, or possibly Charleston Lake.
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Old 06-02-2013, 10:40 PM   #8
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So Dave, in Ontario, you prefer the P.P.'s to private CG's?
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Old 06-03-2013, 06:49 AM   #9
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If you want rustic P.P. are your best option. Charleston Lake park is a nice place to stay. You could also check out the park at Ivy Lea. It is a St. Lawrence park. If you do decide to stay here do not camp under the bridge. The noise form the trucks going over the bridge will keep you awake all night. If you like to be close to the water check out Long Sault Parkway.
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Old 06-03-2013, 07:09 AM   #10
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Sounds like you'd enjoy the Provincial Parks much more. I'd add Awenda PP and the Canisbay campground in Algonquin PP though it's very hard to book a site.

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Old 06-03-2013, 07:11 PM   #11
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DW booked Bon Echo for Sept. She's in love. Can't say I blame her. It's a lovely place. Been trying to wrap my old head around posting pics here for the last couple of hours. Have resized pics, they are ready to go, just need to get tech support here (my son) to show me how to post.
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Old 06-03-2013, 07:44 PM   #12
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stay away from Ivy Lea during the regular season. Too many seasonal campers who dress up their sites like a cottage and seem unfriendly to "weekenders". drive 1 km over the park limit or below it and a little dust comes up then you have 10 seasonal yelling at you to slow down. I dont speed in parks so took offence to their arrogance. However wife and I went late in Sept for the weekend and we had the park to ourselves, Stayed along the top by the road and noise was not an issue.
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Old 06-04-2013, 10:39 AM   #13
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Stayed at Bon Echo PP in 82. Had a blast. Great fishing.
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Old 06-04-2013, 11:33 AM   #14
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Agree with Dave's recommendation, Algonquin's Canisbay is a bit back from Hwy 60, quiet and woodsy. Stays open till Canadian Thanksgiving. One area is Radio and Pet free, so watch for that. I have 6 nights booked late Sept, then I move to 6 nights at Two Rivers. There I have a water access site so I can leave the kayaks at the shore just a few feet away.

Algonquin gets very busy with "foilage" day visitors (can be crazy on weekends) from mid Sept till mid Oct. Some lodges in the park are open for meals and that can be a great option for a change.

If you like to hike or paddle it's hard to do better than Algonquin.

For hot weather Bon Echo has great beaches and some paddling in open water. Hiking is OK but just a few trails. Also, Charleston Lake has good beaches and very good paddling, but hiking is limited.

When booking at Ont PP's check the Site details. Most will show a distance to the electrical post (in meters) and give an equipment size statement (in feet??), like Trailer up to 25 ft.

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Old 06-04-2013, 12:32 PM   #15
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Grundy Lake P.P.

One park you might enjoy would be Grundy Lake P.P. located about an hour North of Killbear. Park is fairly quiet and the waters are pristine. We try to camp there pretty much every year. The lakes are motor restricted making it a great place to bring a canoe/kayak. There is a general store as well as a snack stand just outside the park boundaries. The park is fairly large with many sites. We usually camp in the Trailer Campground (pull through sites) which also has its own beach. There is plenty of place along the water to bring a chair and a book and spend hours under the trees.

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Old 06-04-2013, 07:40 PM   #16
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Stayed at Algonquin when DW & I were teenagers livin' on love and a song and a prayer. Thanks for the tip about Canisbay. Having grown up in Parry Sound (Killbear for camping and Oastler Lake for day trips were my parent's go tos) and checked out Grundy Lake on the internet, Grundy is definitely on our list. If we had booked Providence Bay T&T Park (beautiful) again this summer Grundy Lake would have been a way point for a couple of days, either going or returning. Also, being so close, Long Sault looks like a nice bet for a long weekend. Thanks for all the input folks!

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Old 06-04-2013, 07:51 PM   #17
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Old 06-04-2013, 07:53 PM   #18
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Old 06-04-2013, 07:58 PM   #19
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