Ontario Parks passes are now available at Brampton Library! When you borrow an Ontario Parks pass with your Brampton Library card, you get a day-use permit for one vehicle and its passengers to all provincial parks in Ontario. That’s incredible, and when you think about it - the possibilities for memorable outdoor adventures are endless. 

Did you know that all of Ontario’s Provincial parks combined have nearly 20,000 campsites, 8,000+ kilometres of hiking trails, not to mention some amazing beaches, picnic areas, canoe routes, and more? While these facts can be overwhelming, worry not: if you need some ideas for things to do, activities to try, or sights to see, the Ontario Parks blog is a super useful resource. There’s an article for almost any outdoors-y related topic you can think of - learn a thing or two about nature, hear unique stories both present and past, explore guides on camping and dive into activities like geo-caching, back-country cooking, and everything in between. 

If you’re scratching your head about where to go first, take note that Bronte Creek, Darlington, Earl Rowe, Forks of the Credit, Sibbald Point, Springwater, and Wasaga Beach are all under a 90-minute drive from Brampton. If you’re up for a slightly longer journey, it’s also well worth your while to visit Awenda (just north of Penetanguishene). Awenda is one of few places I’ll visit over and over again, and I can say first-hand it is the perfect spot for a weekend camping getaway. Even if you’re just interested in taking a day trip over the warmer seasons, there’s something here for everyone - from the sandy beaches fronting on Georgian Bay, to the many trails that guide you through lush terrains and habitats. Did I mention the biodiversity is unreal? It’s a hot destination for bird watching and mycology enthusiasts (just look at all the fungi I spotted along Kettle Lake trail!) 

With all this in mind, consider that Ontario’s Provincial parks are remarkable in every season, and winter brings crisp air, snow-capped trees, and a captivating beauty worth beholding in person. While snowshoeing and cross-country skiing can be fun, one of the best ways to take in the sights is by foot. New to the idea of hiking in the winter? I’d recommend checking out this winter preparedness guide for tips on cold weather wandering. Before planning your visit, it’s also good practice to check the Park Locator on the Ontario Parks website to figure out which parks are operating, and what facilities are open and available.

Ready to discover Ontario Parks? Click here to place a hold on an Ontario Parks pass. You can also check out this hand-picked list of books, curated to inspire a deeper connection between you and nature.

Happy Trails, Brampton!

Olivia Olford, Librarian

Sources: https://www.ontarioparks.com/hphp/engage

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