Windy Lake

Hwy 144, NW of Sudbury
Posted on April 6, 2018 / 1475
Windy Lake
Location : Northern Ontario
X-Ski km : 15
Skate km : 15
Snowshoe km : 5
Skill Level : Easy, Intermediate, Advanced
Terrain : small hills, large hills, wide paths, tight turns, flat sections
Facilities : parking, chalet, toilets/outhouse, change rooms, lodging near, drinking water, food close by, trailhead map, good trail signage, trails maintained, track set, gear rentals
Trail Fee : yes

Length –   15 km

Cross Country track set – 15 km
Skate Skiing groomed – 15 km
Snowshoe trail – ~5 km

Skill – all levels, a few fast descents

Terrain – flat sections, short hills, wide trail

Hours – 9 am – 4:30 pm

Fee – Adult pass $ 15,  Students $10, Youth $5 | Snowshoe $5

Trail Map – post markers, maps at a few junctions, no paper map

Facilities – parking, chalet, rentals, lessons, snacks

Highlights – scenic, wilderness, rock outcrops

Phone – 705 855 0145

Website –  Windy Lake Provincial Park

Current Conditions  

Similar Trails –   Walden, Georgian Nordic,  Capreol

Local Clubs –   Onaping Falls Nordics,   Facebook page

Access – from hwy 144 turn down Old Cartier Rd. at the Windy Lake Hotel & Diner, then south into the provincial park car lot.

Also note there is a beautiful hike at the Onaping Falls 10km down hwy 144 towards Sudbury.

There is some fine skiing at Windy Lake Provincial Park NW of Sudbury, with 15 km of well-groomed Nordic trail and 5 km of snowshoe track to please everyone.

All trails are well-rated, wide and good for both classic cross-country and skate skiing. The grooming was good when I was there even after a bad period of rain and mild temps.

Being higher up in elevation they claim the snow lasts, making for a longer ski season.

The forest is a mix of evergreens and white birches with a few large bare rock faces. This makes for a scenic run that never gets boring. You will be passing right by a few small lakes on the 5 km Blue trail, but actually seeing Windy Lake is harder through the trees from the Red loop.

The advanced 4 km Red loop is more of a tight up and down training run for the seasoned skier. I took the shortcut off the Blue trail just before the big descent back to the chalet; good fun.

Green loops are short, flat, beginner runs but be aware the west one splits and could lead you to hills you need to work at.

Snowshoeing is is enjoyable here being well marked, scenic and can be challenging. The lookout is not a long climb but is steep and has a rope to hold on to. Can’t say there is much to see at the top.

Folks from the Onaping Ski Club run the show, are friendly and helpful. I saw lots of local families enjoying an outing here on a sunny weekend.

Big plans are underway to build a new chalet across the road. That will be great as currently the use of the park shelter is limited and you have to ski to the road and walk across to do most of the trails on the north side.

And what you really want to know is…was it windy at Windy Lake? …I can’t say, not when I was there but I am sure it can be!? 

Opening Hours
  • Monday :9 am - 4:30 pm
  • Tuesday :9 am - 4:30 pm
  • Wednesday :9 am - 4:30 pm
  • Thursday :9 am - 4:30 pm
  • Friday :9 am - 4:30 pm
  • Saturday :9 am - 4:30 pm
  • Sunday :9 am - 4:30 pm

WIndy Lake Nordic trail map

 

Windy Lake Snowshoe trail map

Reviews
4.5
Total Score 2 REVIEWS
Fun Factor: Scenic: Trail Design: Technical: Workout:
  • February 9, 2021 at 6:33 pm

    I have skied and enjoyed all the different ski clubs in the Greater Sudbury area but this trail system, when you consider everything, is the best. The mature jack pine forest provides hours of shade for most of the trails. This enhances the above average snowfall these trails experience in the average year. This system offers the longest ski season in Greater Sudbury. If you want a relaxing ski you have the Green trail system which, while it is the easiest portion of the trail system, has a few hills to keep you alert. The Blue trail is beautiful and provides a nice combination of rolling country for a nice rhythmic ski experience but with a significant number of moderate to steep hills to keep your pulse rate high. Finally, the Red trail with its tight turns and numerous challenging hills poses a challenge for the most experienced and skilled skier. This is a must ski location when you are visiting Greater Sudbury.

  • April 6, 2018 at 7:54 pm

    Great skiing and snowshoeing here for everyone. Well groomed trails with loops for all levels. Not a lot to ski, though scenic.

Leave a review
Fun Factor: Scenic: Trail Design: Technical: Workout: