Canoe Tripping in Algonquin - Then and Now
Three canoe tripping experiences! Over 100 years apart, yet connected in time in so many ways! Check out these insights into how the canoe tripping experience in Algonquin Park has changed and yet not changed at all.(order/details)
Treasuring Algonquin : Sharing Scenes From 100 Years of Leaseholding - $30.00 CDN : Summary
About the Book
Among the many who treasure Algonquin Park in Ontario, Canada are a small group of leasehold residents who have occupied small corners of the Park since the earliest days of the 20th century. It is a book about their heritage, the depth and breadth of their roots in the community, their traditions and experiences living and settling in the forest 35 miles from the closest town , their passion for Algonquin and its tradition of multiple-use, their community and its activities and their contributions both large and small to the environment and to quality Park experiences for all who visit.
‘Treasuring Algonquin’ is all about that leasehold community of 300+ leaseholds spread across 19 lakes paralleling for the most part the old railway right-of-way whose forebears were invited by the Ontario Government to establish cottages in the Park. Until 1954 cottagers were welcomed with open arms, support and encouragement. For some families it’s the fifth generation who are now learning to appreciate Algonquin and its beauty. Most of the time, you’d hardly know they were there – until you run into trouble while paddling on one of the lakes, lose your way, need medical attention or get caught in a storm or a heavy northwind. Then they miraculously appear to provide help and guidance and occasionally save your life. Mostly in residence on weekends from ice-out to ice-in, and for a few weeks in the summer, members of this small but vibrant community of 9000+ extended family members ‘have become as much a part of Algonquin as the loons and the ladyslippers’.
Through much “detective-work”, Clemson has blended current and historical narratives with extensive research, through files seldom searched, to provide a glimpse into the lives of the leaseholders who have treasured their experiences in Algonquin Park throughout the past century.
One of the crown jewels of Ontario’s park system, it was originally called Algonquin National Park. This large tract of land (today over 7,700 square kilometers) that sits about 500 meters above sea level contains the headwaters of five major rivers. Created by statute in 1893, it was “reserved and set apart as a public park and forest reservation, fish and game preserve, health resort and pleasure grounds for the benefit, advantage and enjoyment of the people of the Province of Ontario.”1 Renamed Algonquin Provincial Park in 1913 after the addition of several neighbouring townships, it is today an important member of Ontario’s 800-park system. Yearly, over one million visitors come to experience Algonquin in a wide variety of forms. For some it’s a canoe trip to the interior, and for others it’s a camping experience at one of the public campgrounds along Highway 60. The activities these visitors engage in vary widely, from bicycle trips up the old Minnesing Road or along the Rock/Whitefish Trail, to self-guided day hikes on any one of the 12 trails that lie adjacent to Highway 60. A visit to the Algonquin Logging Museum, the Algonquin Park Visitor Centre, or the new Algonquin Art Centre at Found Lake is always a memorable part of every Park itinerary. Some brave tourists rent canoes on Opeongo Lake or Canoe Lake and spend the day paddling around and exploring on their own.