Table of Contents
Aboriginal Indian Pow Wow
Bridal Veil Falls
Fog Horns & Lighthouses
Manitoulin Island is located at the northern end
of Lake Huron, and is close to Lake Superior (the lake to the West of
Manitoulin), Lake Michigan (the lake to the South-West), and Georgian Bay
(to the East); a virtual cross roads of fresh water.
Taken together, these
Great Lakes are the largest collection of fresh water in the world (except
for glaciers). The Great Lakes contain 90% of the fresh water supply
in North America, and 20% of the world's fresh water supply on the surface
of the earth. These lakes are truly freshwater oceans. The next largest
collection of fresh water is at the polar ice & snow caps.
Originally a center of farming, fishing, & lumbering, Manitoulin
Island now enjoys the majority of its commerce as a rural vacationing &
tourism hot spot for the cottage & outdoor sports enthusiasts.
Manitoulin Island has some of the best cottage country, fishing, boating,
beaches, and water sports in all of Canada.
Manitoulin Island is accessed by the swing bridge to the North, or the
large car ferry from the South. Either way, it's worth the trip.
It's a 4 hr. drive from Toronto ON, 6 hr. drive from Detroit MI. or Ottawa
Manitoulin Island is where you will find:
- the world's largest fresh water island (2,765 square km., approx. 200
km. x 150 km.)
- more inland lakes (110 in total) than any other island in the world
- the world's largest lake on an island
- the 2nd best place in Canada to do salmon fishing (BC is #1).
- One of the best places in Ontario for fishing trout, muskie, pike,
bass, perch, crappie, whitefish, walleye, pickerel, etc.
- a great place to visit, fish, boat, sail, canoe, kayak, hunt, bird,
swim, scuba dive, rock climb, vacation in a privately owned cottage, and
Originally, the Canadian government promised all of Manitoulin Island to
be the exclusive territory of the aboriginals (no white settlers allowed),
in exchange for them giving up their traditional lands in Southern
Ontario. That treaty didn't last very long. Find out more
about the Manitoulin
|Every year on Manitoulin, an amazing colourful
celebration of culture is presented in Pow Wow's by
each of the 7 native Reserves. Non-native are permitted to attend these
important events as honored guests.
On Manitoulin, you'll see drummers, singers,
dancers, dancing contests, sweetgrass ceremonies, art shows, craft sales,
sample traditional native foods, and other events all across Manitoulin.
It is an experience you won't want to miss.
There are many opportunities on Manitoulin for viewing this interesting native
history. Manitoulin Island is home to six Ojibwas Reserves, with the
Wikwemikong being one of two "unceeded" reserve in Canada (ie. the Indians
have continuously occupied this land since before white settlers came to
North America, and there is still no treaty on the land). Walpole Island
(near Sarnia, ON) is the other unceeded reserve.
|Looking North to the Cup & Saucer, located 30
minutes from Black's Bay on Manitoulin Island. These limestone cliffs
on Manitoulin are an extension to
the same geological formation that forms Niagara Fall. These
vary from over 200 foot high sheer, vertical walls (66 meters) that will
challenge any world-class rock climber, to gently rolling paths through
the woods that the daring wheelchair bound visitors have enjoyed with
|One of the many nature
trail paths through the cool hardwood forests of Manitoulin at the Cup & Saucer.
Three generations can enjoy the experience together.
||Manitoulin has many trails through the back
country. Some are passable by car, 4X4, ATV, motocross motorcycle,
bicycle, or finally by horse or on foot.
Click on map for full, detailed
image of Manitoulin Trails.
BBay features bicycle adventures & tours, with or without chase car,
flat tire support, lunches delivered, and pickup & delivery after your
day-long Manitoulin adventure. For more information, see
Manitoulin Bike Adventures.
||Providence Bay, looking South towards the
Government Dock. The Bay is an ideal anchorage for sail and motor
boats alike on the South shore of Manitoulin.
Local fishing boats return full of whitefish to this dock
on a daily basis. You can buy these local fish from the local fish
processing plant, or the fish monger who distribute the catch through
local parking lots around Manitoulin Island. It's available fresh on
ice, packaged, smoked, or frozen.
Sport fishing for salmon, pickerel, Lake trout, walleye, and many more
are planned and launched from the public wharf.
The waters around
Manitoulin are the 2nd best in North America for salmon fishing (BC rivers
|One of the many lighthouses all around
Manitoulin Island. There are a number of books available on Manitoulin
lighthouses, giving the fascinating account of storms, shipwrecks, the lightkeepers, and their families.
|Located 30 minutes from Black's Bay Lodge is
Bridal Veil Falls. Cutting through Manitoulin's limestone cap (same rock formation
as Niagara Falls), this river has formed a beautiful lush river valley
that leads to the North Channel.
The river has been used for power
generation (since about 1900's) for all of Manitoulin Island; well
before it was available from the mainland. There is still power
generation here today in a more modern facility.
You can walk along paths following the river, tour the museums and art
galleries in the old power generation building, and visit the historic
town on the North Channel.
|The Swing Bridge is at Little Current, 60
minutes from BBay. The bridge is at the North end of the Island,
connecting Manitoulin to the Trans-Canada Highway at Espanola (half way
between Sault St. Marie and Sudbury)
Originally a railway bridge built in 1913, the bridge was converted to
rail and car traffic; and is now exclusively car traffic. The bridge
stays closed for car traffic to pass single file, and is opened every hour
for 10 minutes for sailboats to pass during the summer.
bridge at Little Current, Manitoulin Island is the only swing bridge
in North America still in operation.
||The lighthouse at
the far West end of Manitoulin Island.
This is one of my favorite places
to come watch the sunset over Lake Huron, Mississagi Strait, and Cockburn
The light and fog horn are still operational today, and depended upon
by local boaters around Manitoulin's excellent sailing waters.
day on the Blue Road. We saw 2 large does with their fawns crossing
the road. Split rail fences, dating from the turn of the century are
all along the farmer's fields on Manitoulin.
||Limestone rocks have been quarried from
Manitoulin, and heading down South for use as landscaping ornaments at
||Located 15 minutes from BBay is the Pioneer
Museum in Mindemoya. This features a covered
bridge and split log cabin; just like Manitoulin "Haweater" settlers would
have lived on Manitoulin 200 years ago.
People born on Manitoulin are commonly
referred to as "Haweaters". Hawberries are small, very bitter
berries that naturally grow on Manitoulin Island's alkaline soils.
During the pioneer days, the bitter hawberries were eaten by the
white settlers during the long winters as the only remaining food supply.
Other people saw the starving pioneers collecting the bitter berries and
eating them, and coined the phrase "Haweaters".
||Defect free limestone blocks are cut from the
Manitoulin Escarpment. Most likely, these hard dolomite limestone
blocks will be wire cut into thin limestone veneer sheets for facing large
buildings in the city.
||Cedar log trimmed edges from a Manitoulin
sawmill have been collected and on their way to a secondary processor.
Most likely, these trimmings will be chipped for use as landscaping cover.
Links for Manitoulin web sites
Waterfront Cottage for Rent on Manitoulin