A vast wilderness of lakes, rivers
and endless tracts of forest
The Sunset Country is the vast wilderness region of Ontario Canada at its extreme northwest bordering the Province of Manitoba and the State of Minnesota. Scarcely populated with no large urban conglomerations it is a marvelous landscape of lakes, rivers and never ending tracts of boreal forests.
Long inhabited by mystical aboriginal tribes such as the Ojibwe, Cree and Sioux today it mainly appeals to adventure seekers looking to explore a pristine area with an untouched wilderness.
As mentioned, there are no large urban areas and the biggest community is the small city of Kenora with a population of just over 15,000 inhabitants.
Economic activity in the region has always been mainly centred on the forestry and mining industries but in recent years it has made a dramatic shift towards the tourism industry as it has become an internationally famous destination for such activities as big game hunting, fly-in fishing, camping, hiking and canoeing.
Adventure seekers annually swell the local population centres as they flock to partake in the numerous activities that the region has to offer.
Location of the Sunset Country
Sunset Country runs from Quetico Wilderness Park in the southeast west to the Rainy River area back east to Pickle Lake in the north. It is a remote region of Ontario Canada visited by few provincial inhabitants except those traveling on their way further west along the Trans-Canada Highways that bisect it. It is very far away from the main population centres of the province and in fact is a long-1900 kilometre (1200 mile) journey from the City of Toronto to the City of Kenora that takes almost 24 hours to accomplish by road.
Getting to Sunset Country:
If you do decide to make the long journey to the region by car you will find it relatively straightforward and will pass by some amazing landscapes.
There are only two main highways that pass through the region on their way to Western Canada. It is on these two roads that you will find almost 100% of the traffic and it is by know means “traffic” when compared to the rest of the province.
The two highways are the Trans-Canada #11 and Trans-Canada # 17. To reach this area you would have had to travel along one of these roads previously so simply continue along your path until reaching the turn-off to your desired location. It is virtually impossible to get lost in this region if you stay along the main transportation routes as there is simply no where else to go.
Traveling to the region directly from international destinations is not an option. Those wishing to visit the region would have to fly into either Thunder Bay or Winnipeg, Manitoba and than catch a connection flight into one of the smaller communities.
Quite a few of the smaller communities do have small local airports as for many this is the only means of reaching them as there simply are no roads that penetrate this untamed Canadian wilderness. The main hub providing these commuter services to the various destinations is Thunder Bay and it is serviced daily with flights from Toronto, Ottawa, Winnipeg and quite a few other Canadian cities.
As fly-in fishing and hunting camps are one of the main attractions of Sunset Country it is quite feasible to expect to reach one of these smaller towns from an international destination with relative ease.
By Public Transport:
The small community of Redditt just north of Kenora is a stop along the main transcontinental rail line. Visit www.viarail.ca
for more information as to schedules and fares.
A few more communities are serviced by bus and it is possible to catch a bus from Toronto to Kenora but be forewarned that that the trip will be extremely long. Visit www.greyhound.ca
for more information.
There are very limited public transportation services to the region and it is not really a route I would recommend. You are better off renting a vehicle and are thus free to come and go as you please and are not limited by the infrequent schedules of the public transportation providers.
Ontario’s Sunset Country is one of its least visited regions as it simply doesn’t have the attractions of the others and is extremely remote from the rest of the province. It appeals mainly to those seeking outdoor adventures amongst pristine wilderness.
It is one of the main hunting and fishing destinations on the planet and is internationally known as “the land of the lakes”.
Fishing and hunting are exceptional and eco-tourism continues to increase annually as many are discovering that outdoor activities such as canoeing, kayaking, camping, swimming and whitewater rafting are amongst the best in the world in unspoiled wilderness regions such as the massive Woodland Caribou Provincial Park and Quetico Provincial Park.
If you are planning a trip to Sunset Country it is most likely to participate in one of the above-mentioned activities and it will probably encompass the duration of your trip to the Province. Few people plan an excursion to the region, as part of their itinerary as it is simply too far away from the other regions and getting there is simply not cost effective. If you would like to experience the beautiful Sunset Country I would recommend planning on spending a full week in the region to fully immerse yourself in this vast, rugged Canadian wilderness.
This is also an area that should only be visited in the summer, as winters are long and cold with much snow that can halt most internal travel. Most of the attractions in the region will be closed for the season so in actuality there would be very little to see or do. Summers in this area are short in duration and my recommendation would be to plan your trip between May and September with the best times being June, July and August.
Sunset Country Ontario Attractions
Sioux Lookout Ontario
While small in size this community is nevertheless one of the largest in Sunset Country. With only 5000 inhabitants it operates the fourth busiest airport in the province and is known at the "hub of the north" due to the fact that it services many remote northern communities along with a thriving fly-in fishing and hunting industry. For more information about this popular tourist destination visit my Sioux Lookout Ontario
Ojibway Provincial Park
This beautiful natural environment park is located just south of the small community of Sioux Lookout. It is centred on Little Vermilion Lake which is part of the historic English River waterway system that links Lake Superior to Lake Winnipeg in Manitoba. Very popular amongst locals it makes for a great place to spend a day or two. Get all the information you need about the park on my Ojibway Provincial Park
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