I have to say this about Kettle Lakes Provincial Park.….it’s one of my favourites, I love this park and would go back again and again. We had a great site, except for one thing which I’ll yack about later. It was a corner site, #66, one campsite on one side and one behind us and that was it. The campsite beside us was vacant the whole time we were there and the one behind us, well…….like I said, more on that later!
We were about a 2 minute walk to the beach although their beach area is not the nicest beach in Northern Ontario but it will do. They also have a Day Use area. We had nice weather while we were here, about 30 Celsius which is a little unusual for this time of year. There are 22 lakes in this park and all are unique and all have interesting traits. Now the roads are pretty interesting also, it’s kind of a maze to get anywhere but it’s fun driving around this park.
We paddled most of the lakes, the only issue is you have to drive to each lake, no portaging, and the lakes are distanced from each other, except for Pexton and Cub Lakes. We were able to park in one spot and just carry our canoe to each lake for those two.
LaViolette Lake is a favourite of ours. We canoed there a couple of times. There is a steep little hill going down to the lake and once you put in you can go left down to the end or turn right and paddle through a small creek to the other part of the lake.
One evening we were paddling LaViolette Lake and a man was standing on the shoreline taking photos. We chatted quite a long time with him and then we each went on our way. I mention this because we had happened to meet up with him again at our next Park. Small World.
Hughes Lake is the biggest lake in the Park and the only one allowing motorboats. There is not a great deal of parking at the launch, maybe room for 2-3 cars/trucks. The other point I want to mention is that there are leeches in pretty much every lake. Putting in was exciting, check for leeches and jump in the canoe. Those things are nasty! When I was a kid, my parents owned a cottage up near Dorset, past Algonquin Park a ways. One day I was on my water mattress and paddling along the shore and I went through a nest of leeches. Holy Terror! I must have had 50 or more leeches attached to me. My Dad and uncles were there and had to get them off me using the end of their cigarettes and salt. Now today they say don’t use the end of cigarettes or salt to get them off. Let me tell ya, use whatever, just get them off me! lol So I have not liked them ever since. I still think about that day and I’m 62; I was probably 8-9 years old when it happened.
Green Lake is a nice lake, there is a picnic area and swimming area and at the other end is a dog beach, separate road to get there. We paddled Green Lake and stopped at the other side, put our canoe on shore and Clint walked on an obvious trail to Leece lake, he said it was only about a 40 metre walk. We did see a Loon and her young one on this lake.
Heart Lake is a cute little lake, we have paddled it before but not this time. However, we did stop and take a look at it and a young couple were just leaving and said they saw a bear on the shoreline. Missed him by a minute!
They have some nice trails in the Park, Tamarack is one. This trail is only about 1.5 km long but we liked it. We also did the Kettle Lakes trail, 2.3 km. It went past the top end of Pine Lake and past another little no name lake, beautiful big beaver house on it. The trails here are really well maintained and cut back.
We also walked the Oh-Say-Yah-Wah-Kaw Trail, maybe 2 kms long. The sign says 2 km, brochure says 3 km but regardless it’s a nice trail, it goes past Leece Lake and Pexton Lake.
At Deer Lake, we did spot a lot of dried up moose poop but no moose.
Other lakes we did were Kettle Lake (figures!), Leg of Lamb, Leece Lake, Point Lake and others. We had purchased a canoe cart and we used it to get to Leg of Lamb lake. It was a steep, through the bush walk to get to the shore. I should say there was a trail but I don’t think it had been used much in years. These carts are pretty awesome, easy to put the canoe on them, strap it down and off you go. They are super light and easy to pull so when you’re older, as we are, it comes in pretty handy.
I mentioned we had really no neighbours near our site except for behind us. So one late afternoon, we came home to our site and there were 2 single mothers with their kids behind us. We could hear super loud hip-hop music and super loud swearing……. at their kids. Really bad mothering here. One comment was “You look like a F***ing *****” to one of the kids, “why did you eat all the food you F***ing useless so and so” among other horrible comments. It was non-stop, so we finally went inside, ate dinner and watched a movie with the sound cranked up. They were at it all night, walking from their site to the beach, playing very loud music, screaming at their kids………..you get the idea, so sad. They only stayed one night fortunately but unfortunately the Wardens only patrolled the Park on Friday and Saturday nights and these morons were here for one night, a Monday night. I still feel bad for their children who were not older than 11-12 years old.
But back to ME, I love this Park, I know I said it before. There is also a CanOp store with a gas station right outside the Park. Sanitation Station is one lane in and out and it’s a loop. Great bike trails, 14 kms of them. Lots of leeches, Some lakes are super clear and not too deep.
This is really a terrific park but we have to leave sometime, so on to Ivanhoe Lake now!