Windy Lake Provincial Park is located just north of Sudbury and boasts of offering a variety of recreational activities depending on the season. In the winter, Windy Lake is transformed into a winter wonderland and offers cross-country skiing and snowshoeing throughout the park. During the summer it features a nice sandy beach for swimming, fishing and boating.
We’ve been to Windy Lake three times:
There is one hiking trail in the park, the Transition Trail (3km round trip, rated easy). The trailhead is located between sites #15 and #18 and loops through the forest. The trail is signed with yellow markers and leads to the rim of a huge crater made by a meteorite that impacted the earth nearly 2 billion years ago. Today it is a lush forest home to many trees, other plants and animals.
In the winter, the park partners with the Onaping Falls Nordics Ski Club, which maintains over 15 kilometres of groomed cross-country ski trails. Most of the trails originate at the ski chalet.
The park also offers snowshoeing along the Transition Trail, as well as ice fishing.
Other Activities and Attractions
Windy Lake also offers a few other facilities and attractions, including a
- Beautiful sandy beach that spans across 1.5km along the shore. The swimming area is buoyed off and has a gradual decline
- Picnic area with a sheltered section, which is located near a smaller beach
Windy Lake is located near Onaping Falls. From the park it’s about a 10 minute drive to the A.Y. Jackson Lookout, which features a short trail (2.1km) that contains a couple of viewing platforms, weaves through the forest and crosses the river over the falls. Near the parking lot there are some historic mining equipment which were used from the Levack Mine.
A more detailed description of the hike can be found here
Windy Lake is a relatively small park and offers 100 campsites, seven of which are walk-in campsites located near the lake in a radio-free zone. We reserved a walk-in campsite when we visited Windy Lake in the summer (#W6 and #W7), both of which are really nice.
We’ve also stayed in one of the rustic cabins in the winter. The cabin consists of a single room with an enclosed front porch. It can sleep up to six people and comes equipped with a queen bed and a double bunk bed. It also has a table with two chairs and two benches, lighting, a propane fireplace and a small kitchenette with a mini fridge, microwave, kettle and coffee maker. We just had to bring our sleeping bags, pillows, food and water for the weekend.