14 Best Lake of the Woods Canoeing Routes (2023)

iltA quick glance at the waterscape map of Lake of the Woods, a sprawling lake in the Sunset Country of northwestern Ontario, with its many islands and coves, is all it takes to reveal a canoe paradise. The best Lake of the Woods canoe routes have something for everyone: travel in small, intimate channels or explore the sprawling island of the same name.

Eager to discover pristine waters, exquisite Canadian Shield camping, boreal forest retreats and excellent pike, pike and muskie fishing. The area is criss-crossed by Great Canadian Trail paddle trails that offer great opportunities for paddle trips of all lengths.

Choose a canoe route based on your experience and expectations. Lake of the Woods itself is large and can be subject to strong winds - a challenge well worth it for experienced paddlers and seaworthy canoeists. Look for smaller bodies of water like Dogtooth Lake, Blue Lake or Stewart Lake to reduce exposure to wind and waves. Of course, lakes and smaller waterways can require more handling, so be sure to factor this into your Lake of the Woods area canoeing plans. Looking for something a little less adventurous? Check out our recommendationsRental of cabins and camps for rowers.

You'll find family canoe trips, adventures, and everything in between on our list of the best Lake of the Woods canoe routes. Additional resources for outdoor adventures are available atForest Lake Discovery CenterLocated in Kenora, Ontario.

[This article isThe ultimate outdoor adventure guide in Lake Forest.Find all the resources you need to plan an adventure-filled trip to the Kenora region. ]

Best Canoeing on Woods Lake

Dogtooth Lake | 2 dage

Started inParque Provincial do Rio Rapidsand choose your own canoeing adventure on Dogtooth Lake, a picturesque body of water with many islands and peninsulas (once you're on the lake, you're technically inEagle-Dogetos Provincial Park). The park is located 15 miles south of Kenora on Highway 71. It is a great destination for a family canoe trip on Lake of the Woods; campsites are plentiful and often have sandy beaches for swimming.

Stay close to the west coast and seek shelter on Big Island, which is right at the mouth of the Rapids River and offers good protection from the prevailing winds. Camping at Eagle-Dogtooth Provincial Park is free as it is a non-operational park, but you must purchase a permit to launch and park your vehicle in Rushing River Provincial Park.

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Lake Ena to Lake Vermilion | 2 days

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(Video) ESCAPE TO THE WILDERNESS: Algonquin Park Backcountry Canoe Trip - BARRON CANYON

This 16-mile round trip offers everything the intermediate kayaker needs. Feel a sense of seclusion as you complete the 500-foot drive to Lake Vermilion, with its soaring granite cliffs and island campsites. Be sure to paddle to the northwest corner of Lake Vermilion, where there is another shuttle and hiking trail with great views of the falls that flow down from Lake Dasha.

You may want to plan an extra day for camping and spend more time exploring Lake Vermilion. Take a guided canoe trip in Lake of the Woodsgreen adventure. There is free parking at the boat launch on Lake Ena, and there is no charge for camping.

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Keewatin til Minaki 3 days

The 40 km one-way route runs north of Keewatin, west of Kenora on the Winnipeg River, with no port. The journey along the old Aboriginal and fur trading canoe routes is perfect for beginners and advanced paddlers and includes a trip down the river, with gentle currents and medium-sized lakes, connecting to the town of Minaki.

Along the way you will find many campsites and good fishing. There is quite a bit of jet ski traffic on this route; avoid long weekends and mid-summer to avoid crowds.

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[Paddle Travel Guide: See All Northwestern Ontario Kayaking Adventures]

Loop til Stewart Lake | 3 days

East of Kenora, near the Trans-Canada Highway, this three-day, moderately difficult canoe route starts and ends at Stewart Lake, crosses a series of lakes and crosses five harbors. As you explore here, you'll find rocky coastlines and fantastic campsites.sea ​​trial area- Home to world-renowned scientific research that reveals great insight into freshwater ecology.

Handling marks are clear and fairly short. Canadians can camp for free on this Crown Land canoe route; non-Canadian residents requireCrown Lands campingtilladelse.

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Keewatin til Rushing River 3 dias

This 41 kilometer section of the Great Trail is best suited to sea kayakers or canoeists with experience in exposed waters. You'll also need solid sailing skills to navigate Lake of the Woods' islands and peninsulas. Keep an eye on the weather and travel carefully, allowing time for wind delays in your itinerary.

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Lago Kakaji | Tre dage

(Video) If you Canoe, WATCH THIS!

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With plenty of open water and no docks, it's a great destination for sea kayaking in the Lake of the Woods area. You'll find a public launch site at Kakaji Lake (also known as Crow Lake) just off Hwy 71 south of Kenora. Head north from here to explore countless islands and beautiful rocky cliffs. You'll find some of the best backcountry camping at Lake of the Woods Sunset Country at Lake Kakaji.

From the northernmost point of the lake, you can extend your trip by taking a ferry to Cedar Tree Lake and beyond (see Lake Cameron Loop below). Lake Kakaji is a large area so it is important to be aware of weather conditions and allow for wind delays on your trip.

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Sable Islands | Three days

Kayak across Lake of the Woods with Green Adventures to remote Sable Island, a two-hour drive from Kenora. This trip is designed for experienced kayakers who are ready to paddle the big water of Forest Lake. The reward is a fully guided camping experience in a white sand paradise that will make you think you are in the Caribbean.

Expect great swimming and wonderful beaches to explore. At the right time of year, the Sable Islands offer some of the best birding opportunities in northwestern Ontario, with 256 bird species in the region.

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Puppy bite rings | Three days

Parque Provincial do Rio RapidsIt is your gateway to a number of canoe routes in the Lago do Bosque area. Enter the park on Highway 71 for a five-port, 20-mile canoe trip into the backcountry. Head east from camp and follow the river system to Lake Kilvert. You will then be transported on an easy 100 meter trail to Swamp Lake and a 2200 meter shuttle to White Lake where you will find the town of Sawmill Ghost Sands.

Two other short hikes take you to Puppy Tooth Lake, where there are two campsites and easy connections to your starting point at Dogtooth Lake.

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Stewart Lake to Vermilion Bay | 4 days

This one-way canoe route crosses a secluded lake and is an excellent place to fish for pike and pike. Departure from Stewart Lake, south of the Trans-Canada Highway and west of Dryden. Paddle through narrow channels to Lower Stewart Lake, then drive to Lakes Geesay and Manomin.

The route then heads east to Lake Winnage, where there is excellent beach camping. Eagle Lake, the largest lake on the road, has many headlands and excellent granite rock campsites. Finally, you will reach the community of Cinnabar Bay via the Trans-Canada Highway.

(Video) How to get BACK IN when your Canoe tips over [SOLO]

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Cameron Lake Circuit | 4 dage

If you have more time and are interested in completing six portages, this is a great way to add distance and variety to your Forest Lake canoe trip from Lake Kakaji (Crow). Your tour begins and ends at the public departure point south of Highway 71Sioux Straits Provincial Park. Paddle 7 miles north on Lake Kakagi and make the short trip to Lake Cedartree.

From here the route continues north to where the lake meets the Cedar Tree River. A short trip down the road to a small lake and another short trip back to the continuation of the Cedar Tree River, which flows into Flint Lake. At the southern end of Flint is another portage to Lake Stephen - home to Aboriginal pictographs and a good campsite. There is also a shuttle route to Lake Cameron, from where the route turns west, requiring a 2,500 meter flat shuttle route back to Kakaji.

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Galloping River to Vermilion Bay | 5 days

This variation of the Stewart Lake route (mentioned above) adds a little more distance, after the 90km stretch of the Great Walk. begins aceParque Provincial do Rio RapidsHead east through Dogtooth Lakes and Kilvert Lakes before joining the Stewart Lake Route at Lake Manomin. Winnage Lake has a unique wilderness feel that requires careful navigation - keep an eye on the map to see the many bays, islands and peninsulas.

Skip Buzzard Falls to Eagle Lake, then paddle east across the big water to Vermilion Bay.

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Call Dogs | 5 days

This five-day journey begins and ends atParque Provincial do Rio Rapids, which facilitates planning. The course itself is rated as beginner to intermediate and is ideal for kayakers looking to develop their navigation, transportation and wilderness camping skills. Highlights include the pristine waters of Lake Dogtooth and Kilvert, excellent fishing on Lake Gale and great camping.

You might want to spend an extra day or two for your second night at a picturesque campsite. The landscape of Eagle-Dogtooth Provincial Park is spectacular with soaring granite cliffs overlooking Eagle Lake. There are 7 transports along the way, the longest of which is 1300 meters long and extremely difficult.

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(Video) 14 Days Solo Camping in the Yukon Wilderness - The Full Documentary

Blue Lagoon Loop | 7 dage

This circular canoe route in the Lago do Bosque area starts and ends inLago Azul Provincial Park, off Hwy 647, north of Vermilion Bay and east of Kenora. With 17 ports in total, this is a great week-long canoe trip for intermediate paddlers with a total length of 97 km. All ports are less than 500 meters and connect to a number of bodies of water including Gordon Lake, Daniels Lake and Canyon Lake.

This network of waterways was formerly part of the fur trade route to the Hudson's Bay Company outpost on Eagle Lake. You will also be able to see the remains of an abandoned mica mine in a rock pond. Today, the area is isolated and known for its crystal clear waters and excellent pike and pike fishing. You must have a permit to start and park your vehicle in Blue Lake Provincial Park.

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Lake of the Woods, Dogtooth Eagle Trail | Mere end 7 dage

This 7-10 day adventure tour offers experienced paddlers an up-close look at the lakes and canals east of Lake of the Woods, including somegreat catch. Just be sure to allow time in your schedule to accommodate weather delays and be prepared to paddle in big water.

Parque Provincial do Rio Rapids(from Hwy 71) is a convenient starting point for your journey. East over Kilvert, Gale and Ethelma lakes, then south over Highwind and Hillock lakes. Enter the large northwest bay at Dryberry Lake and sail southwest along this meandering body of water to Lake Berry and the Berry River, which empties into Lobstick Bay at Woods Lake.

From here, head northwest across the narrow peninsula within the undeveloped Lake of the Woods Reserve. Finally, you'll complete your loop around the eastern peninsula, targeting Bistone Bay and the Rapids Estuary. You must have a permit to start and park your vehicle in Rapids River Provincial Park.

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[Further Reading: Best Canoe Rentals and Outfitters Near Lake of the Woods]

Forest Lake map

pressuregreen adventureGet Lake of the Woods canoe trail maps in Kenora, including detailed topographical maps for inland canoe routes and maps for exploring the big waters of Lake of the Woods. Green Adventures local guides can help you customize a canoe route map that includes campsites, transportation and points of interest.

to beroforeningvejCreate a canoe trip plannergreat catchThe route traverses the sunset landscape of northwestern Ontario, from Vermilion Bay to Rapids River Provincial Park, to Lake of the Woods, to Kenora and Minakie before crossing the Manitoba border. It's your best resource for planning epic long-distance canoeing adventures or exploring scenic paddling trails.interactive digital cardAlso available.

(Video) 144 HOURS LIVING IN A CANOE (6 days off the grid in the Boundary Waters)

Lose yourself in the backcountry on one of these amazing canoe routes.| Photo courtesy: Tourism Ontario


How long does it take to canoe 10 miles on a river? ›

The time it takes to canoe 10 miles is 3.5 hours. Because taking no breaks and canoeing straight through on calm, still water, the average canoeist can paddle around 2.6 knots or 3 mph.

What is the grass river canoe route? ›

Grass River Canoe Route

Manitoba's Grass River is one of the best subarctic canoe routes WI has to offer. This route has many highlights, including Manitoba's finest ancient Indian rock painting site, the province's three most resplendent waterfalls, and the region's top-rated walleye lake.

What is the most stable canoe? ›

Wider canoes tend to be more stable. This makes them a great platform for activities like fishing, where an exciting catch can quickly lead to imbalance and an easy tipping. They're also great for pursuits like photography, where steadiness is key.

What is the best size canoe for one person? ›

🏆 What is the best length for a solo canoe? The best solo canoes are typically between 10 feet and 14 feet. This shorter length ensures the canoe is lightweight and easy to maneuver – this can however mean a compromise on speed. Longer boats generally go faster on the water.


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