Kawartha Highlands Provincial Park

A large group of friends (10 adults and 4 kids), Banjo, my husband and I just returned from a 4-day backcountry canoeing trip in Kawartha Highlands Provincial Park.  It’s a wonderful piece of Canadian shield wilderness that is located around Apsley, Ontario.  It was a signature site, but in 2011 it officially became a provincial park; the largest south of Algonquin. There are no campgrounds but over 100 campsites accessible by canoe through six routes.

My husband and I did a backcountry trip there in 2011 and have only just had the chance to go back with a group of great friends. The weather was sunny with a temperature that hovered around 30 degrees celsius during the day.

The route we took started at the Long Lake Access Point, and we paddled through Long Lake and stayed on Loucks Lake the first night, and then made 2 small portages, and a few beaver dam lift overs to get into Cox Lake. It’s a great route for first timers.

I’m interested in doing a circle route next time I plan a trip to Kawartha Highlands. It’s time to do some more exploring!


  1. I paddled on Long Lake several years ago, it was a great trip. And looking at the picture of your canoe, loaded to the hilt, I started to laugh-usually mine looks like that, too, and onlookers ask us if we’re going for 2 months or more!


    • Thanks for the comment, Jack! Yes, paddling in the shoulder seasons definitely requires a bit more gear. Now that we have a toddler, the gear pile has gotten even larger. I’m shocked that it can all still fit in the canoe!


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