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wiplar
Member

Post Number: 29
Registered: 05-2017
Posted on Thursday, February 6, 2020 - 9:22 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

https://www.ontarioparks.com/fees/backcountry/2020

I was shocked to see the price of a campsite in the Lady Evelyn/Smoothwater Park and area have increased soooo much. $36.73 per site seems a little bit much.
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eddy_turn
Member

Post Number: 169
Registered: 03-2011


Posted on Thursday, February 6, 2020 - 3:30 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Good news for parties 4+, but absurd for solos and couples. Obviously done by bureaucrats for bureaucrats. Here's a quote from OP provided in Algonquin forum:
"Ontario Parks is making this change in order to simplify the booking process by streamlining the backcountry fee structure and making it consistent with our car camping fee model."
Ha-ha-ha
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wiplar
Member

Post Number: 30
Registered: 05-2017
Posted on Friday, February 7, 2020 - 8:58 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

In Temagami area it hard to find the portages often. The sites can be smaller to camp on. That increase is 3X the price last year. If we have a thunderbox on a site we are thrilled. Algonquin Park and Killarney are not seeing this type of increase.
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eddy_turn
Member

Post Number: 170
Registered: 03-2011


Posted on Saturday, February 8, 2020 - 6:04 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Significant part of Temagami territory is outside of provincial parks and if maintained at all then maintained by fellow canoeists. In my experience in the parks portages are usually marked and many, probably most, campsites have a thunderbox. That said, these portages and sites are still cared for mostly by canoeists. There are some serious exceptions to this rule, like aftermath of recent fires and slightly less recent ice storms - that were cleaned by OPP teams. But these are the exceptions. I was cleaning overgrown portages on the Sturgeon past June. Also, I informed OP about obliterated portage on the Sturgeon/Obabika confluence and to the best of my knowledge nothing has been done about it by the park.
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brian
Moderator

Post Number: 1938
Registered: 02-2004


Posted on Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 9:00 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

Given that there are so many canoeists -- maybe a majority -- from the Temagami camps, this is an improvement on their fees. It was always outrageous.

Still doesn't justify these new fees on solo or couples. Canoeing is not a growth industry, so this just continues to discourage canoeists coming to Temagami.
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wiplar
Member

Post Number: 31
Registered: 05-2017
Posted on Wednesday, February 12, 2020 - 8:25 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

I live in this area and would consider driving to Algonquin or Kilarney for their cheaper fees.
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eddy_turn
Member

Post Number: 171
Registered: 03-2011


Posted on Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 12:47 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Brian, if camps pass the camping fees to their customers, then the fees weren't that outrageous to begin with - still $11/night for most families. If new fee structure will make camps more affordable it shouldn't be paid for by pushing solos and couples out of the parks altogether.
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brian
Moderator

Post Number: 1939
Registered: 02-2004


Posted on Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 2:04 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Camps are already struggling. For a section of ten, that's a huge hit every night. For the same campsite. If you sent your child, would you be happy with a second bill from camp passing on the cost of campsites?

But I also don't believe the burden should be shifted to solos and couples. Frankly, I think the fees were, and are, outrageous for all.

I spend every trip clearing trails that Parks didn't do. FOT offered to set up volunteer crews to help clear them and maintain campsites but Parks did not embrace the idea.
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eddy_turn
Member

Post Number: 172
Registered: 03-2011


Posted on Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 6:15 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

As far as camps do not have other sources of income except for what they charge for their services - everything, including the camp fees are eventually paid by the customers. I don't know if it's deducted from the bottom line, but if the flat fee will help the camps then it's good. For those who can afford it.
As a potential customer I'd say - after meeting some nicely organized kids, mostly on the Sturgeon, I considered sending my son to Keewaydin, but when I saw the camp fees... We are a middle class family, south of the border, but for us it's absolutely unrealistic. And even free camping wont' change it much. I looked recently at Madawaska Kanoe Center fees - in 18 years they increased more than 100%. I'm not quite sure what I'm rambling about. Now I have to re-route my summer solo trip in Temagami to avoid being robbed of four-five hundred dollars. And they say that canoe is a poor man's yacht!
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brian
Moderator

Post Number: 1940
Registered: 02-2004


Posted on Friday, February 14, 2020 - 8:32 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

Keewaydin is a charitable foundation and has a growing scholarship program. Always worth an enquiry.
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earle
Member

Post Number: 14
Registered: 06-2009
Posted on Thursday, March 12, 2020 - 9:26 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

Oh my gosh ... I just read about the fee increase. Been coming up here for 20 years and always paid the back country fees which seemed expensive enough for 2 people. We were going to come back up this early summer to do a 15 day canoe trip. If we have to pay for the full 15 days it will cost $550.87 for 2 people. That is crazy considering we are not guaranteed any site, thunderboxes and not getting any services. I think we will have to rethink our plans which is very disappointing.
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eddy_turn
Member

Post Number: 173
Registered: 03-2011


Posted on Friday, March 13, 2020 - 12:04 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

The most irrational part of it is the reasoning provided in replies from Provincial Park Management Supervisor and others: that "[we] are streamlining the backcountry fee structure across the province and making it consistent with our car camping fee mode". We can streamline bus tickets charges to make them consistent with air transport fee mode. The question is: why the hell shall we do that?
Personally I will write a letter to Ministry of the Environment (no expectations, especially me being non-resident). And for the first time in 10 years cancel my summer Temagami trip
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brian
Moderator

Post Number: 1942
Registered: 02-2004


Posted on Sunday, March 15, 2020 - 2:59 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Not sure why you would write to Environment as this is a decision at the Ministry of Natural Resources.

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eddy_turn
Member

Post Number: 174
Registered: 03-2011


Posted on Sunday, March 15, 2020 - 6:21 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

I'm not fluent in Canadian bureaucracy - I have my difficulties even with American much smaller one. Someone on myccr said it was Environment. Thanks for correction.
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grncnu
Member

Post Number: 455
Registered: 08-2010
Posted on Sunday, March 22, 2020 - 12:56 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

Iíve heard Ont. Provincial Parks are shutting down due to Covid-19. Wonder if this impacts backcountry parks? As in, collection/enforcement of fees? How about free access for the duration of the crisis... if the US border remains closed for months, as suddenly seems probable, the area will take a huge hit from absence of American cottagers/tourists....
Just sayiní.
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grncnu
Member

Post Number: 456
Registered: 08-2010
Posted on Sunday, March 22, 2020 - 1:07 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

And of course the camps like Keewaydin...
We all deserve a break during these very troubled times.
And... what better way to self-isolate and social-distance than on a prolonged canoe trip???
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otter_mel
Member

Post Number: 171
Registered: 03-2004


Posted on Tuesday, March 24, 2020 - 1:49 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Now only for well healed
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grncnu
Member

Post Number: 457
Registered: 08-2010
Posted on Wednesday, March 25, 2020 - 12:06 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Yeah... thatís why it should be free access...
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otter_mel
Member

Post Number: 172
Registered: 03-2004


Posted on Thursday, March 26, 2020 - 8:22 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Algonquin: $12.43
Temagami Parks: $36.73
Triple the cost!
In Temagami, you can go in and out of parks and onto crown land on various trips and there is no way to accurately calculate the fees to be paid, especially since I (or we) usually make route alterations on the go and go a different way to get to the same spot (you can do that in lots of areas in Temagami), or decide to stay an extra day in some spots whether on crown land or in parks or even extend the trip if we like a particular area!!
A real mess this is with the fees!!
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grncnu
Member

Post Number: 458
Registered: 08-2010
Posted on Friday, March 27, 2020 - 2:07 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

Itís completely ridiculous I agree. Weíve been on trips where we honestly didnít know whether weíd stray into parks or not, so what do you do?
So sue me.... but my approach since this fee regime was first introduced has been to never pay unless I am caught by the rangers, in which case you just make some lame excuse and pay later.... itís only happened once.
I happen to believe itís illegitimate for the government to charge these fees in the first place.
I also donít want, and donít approve of, the stupid toilets and lousy portage clearing done by Parks. The toilets are too close to the campsites and not in keeping with the tenets of backcountry camping. The portage clearing is unnecessary since canoeists do it anyway (and do it much better).
So anyway my advice is to not pay.
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placidbay
Member

Post Number: 1
Registered: 05-2012
Posted on Sunday, April 5, 2020 - 3:18 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post

Ontario Parks moved to the Ministry of Environment maybe 2 years ago. That would be the place to write to.
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brian
Moderator
Post Number: 1943
Registered: 02-2004


Posted on Monday, April 6, 2020 - 9:26 am:   Edit Post Delete Post

I stand corrected.

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