While the campground may be closed during the snow season, Presqu’ile Provincial Park is open for day use 365 days a year.
So why visit in winter? Here are six big reasons:
1. Fantastic coastal views
When conditions are right, ice accumulation along the shoreline of Lake Ontario produces fantastic formations.
You can see everything from ice volcanoes to icebergs and even ice pancakes!
ice for pancakes
But these formations change constantly and often do not last long. Each visit offers a new view.
Just be sure to enjoy the beauty of winter from dry land. Not all ice is safe to walk on. Venturing onto unsafe ice puts your life (and the lives of lifeguards) at risk.
2. Winter fauna
Many animals are more visible in the park once people leave for the summer. Red foxes, wild turkeys and white-tailed deer are frequently seen.
You might even spy more secretive animals, like river otters.
Please do not feed wildlife in the park or leave food. All Presqu’ile animals have special adaptations that help them survive the winter and can find all the food they need on their own.
3. Winter birds
Winter brings a new multitude of birds that winter in Presqu’ile and disappear in the summer.
Overwintering ducks, such as the spectacular long-tailed duck, are always present, and other species come and go throughout the winter. In March, Presqu’ile is a stage for thousands of ducks, geese and swans and is one of the best places in the world to see this mass migration event.
Additionally, other birds such as the bald eagle, snow bunting and snowy owl are regularly seen.
Visit the Bird Sightings Dashboard to find out what birds are seen in the park and add your own sightings.
4. Snow slopes
Once the snow falls, animals that remain active during the winter leave their telltale footprints in the snow, making it a great time to find out who’s in the neighborhood!
Learn more about how to be a winter wildlife detective.
Grouse (cross-shaped) and raccoon tracks
Follow the clues to see what the animals have been up to in the park.
5. You have the beach to yourself!
It is not an entirely joking statement.
The park is much quieter and perfect for an introspective walk along the trails – road or beach – and you might see something completely different.
6. Winter landscapes in general
The forest and fields of the park can be a beautiful sight with a dusting of frost or snow.
Experience waldinsamkeit as you take a stroll through the winter wonderland on Jobes’ Woods Trail.
Don’t forget your pass!
A valid daily vehicle permit or season pass is required while in the park (yes, even during the winter).
Day vehicle passes can be purchased in advance online or by phone.
Our staff works hard to ensure roads are respected and vault toilets are maintained, and spend the winter tackling important park projects. Visitor fees support this work.
Guarantee your entry to Presqu’ile even on the busiest days by making a reservation in advance!
Wondering what to bring for a winter visit?
- Water and snacks (no running water during winter season)
- Dress warmly and in layers as the weather can change quickly.
- Hand sanitizer (vault toilets remain open, however our comfort stations are closed)
Learn more tips to prepare for your winter adventures here.