Length of stay: 1 day
Visited: August 2020
There are over 250,000 lakes in Ontario, which collectively contain around 20% of the world’s freshwater supply. With all those lakes, I guess someone ran out of ideas of what to name them all because apparently eight of them are called Windy Lake. But there is only one Windy Lake Provincial Park.
After spending yesterday at Awenda Provincial Park, we drove 4 hours to get to Windy Lake Provincial Park, the second stop on our second Northern Ontario road trip this summer. Windy Lake is a relatively small park with 100 campsites, but boasts of having one of the best recreational beach areas in the entire Sudbury region.
We arrived at the park around 6:30p.m, checked in and picked up our permit. We managed to reserve a site (#W6) in one of the seven walk-in campsites located on the shores of Windy Lake. In addition to the nice views of the lake, these campsites are also in a radio-free area.
The weather forecast was calling for 15 to 20mm of rain this evening and overnight. So when we arrived at our campsite, we quickly set up our tent and started a fire to make dinner. It lightly sprinkled on and off while we made and ate dinner, so as soon as we finished eating, we drove to the comfort station to brush our teeth and then went to bed.
It rained all throughout the night. There is also a railroad nearby and we could hear the train roar by at various times throughout the night. The next morning we drove to the picnic area, which had a covered section, to make breakfast and eat on a dry picnic table.
Afterwards we drove to Halfway Lake Provincial Park, which is 30 minutes north of Windy Lake, to spend the morning hiking.
We returned to Windy Lake at 2:45p.m. By this time the clouds had cleared and we were greeted by blues skies and sun. We decided to hike along the single trail in the park – the Transition Trail (3km round trip, rated easy). We parked at the picnic area and followed the yellow markers through the forest. The trail was once the rim of a huge crater made by a large meteorite that impacted the earth nearly 2 billion years ago. Today it is a lush forest home to many trees, other plants and animals.
We’re not too sure about the easy rating of the trail as there were rolling hills and some steep sections. It should come as no surprise that after finishing up our hike, we headed over to the beach to go swimming. Windy Lake features a 1.5km sandy shore. The swimming area is buoyed off and is quite shallow. The water was refreshing and felt wonderful after a day of hiking.
We returned to our campsite around 4:30p.m and started a fire to make dinner. It became obvious as to why the lake was named Windy Lake. But hey, at least there were no bugs. We went to bed relatively early as we planned to drive to Pancake Bay Provincial Park the next morning.