Sleeping Giant Provincial Park
Sleeping Giant Provincial Park, the home of the Sleeping Giant Loppet, offers some of the greatest skiing you will find anywhere – period! The park is situated on a large peninsula of land, the Sibley Peninsula and is blessed with snowfalls that are usually a lot heavier then you will find in town.
The Park is situated approximately 75 kms to the east of Thunder Bay on HWY 11/17, but the drive is worth it! Not only do you get some of the best snow and grooming in the region, the trails are nicely sheltered by huge stands of evergreen trees. Even on a cold day you will find some of the most comfortable skiing conditions – no wind and plenty of sunshine! Regular trips to Sleeping Giant Park are a must during the winter!
The Park features picturesque and challenging trails, but is also a place for a relaxing, easy outings. Whether you are skate or classic skiing, the trails are wide enough to enjoy a brisk ski and a friendly conversation at the same time. Many folks often wait to ski Sleeping Giant closer to the Sleeping Giant Loppet, but be assured conditions are great all throughout the winter. The Visitor’s Centre at Marie Louise Lake is closed in the winter except on the Monday of the Family Day Weekend and on Saturday & Sunday of Loppet Weekend.
For most skiers, there are 2 great options for skiing at the park. There is a 20km trail, with beginner to intermediate in terrain, that circles Marie Louise Lake. To access it, drive to the campground and park in the lot at the gatehouse. You can carry your skis a short distance to the start of the trail. You can ski the entire loop, or do an out and back to achieve any distance you wish to ski!
The other option is the Burma Trail /Pickerel Lake 30 km loop or the 9km (18Km return) trail to the Thunder Bay Lookout. . These trails are intermediate to advanced in nature and we would suggest skiing with a buddy due to the remoteness of these trails and the abundance of wildlife in the area. To access these trails, there is limited parking at the Rita Lake Road. Please do not park along Hwy 587 as this could result in a significant fine.
REMEMBER: If you are a Thunder Bay Nordic Trails member you must display your membership card on the dash of your vehicle while in the park. Non-members must purchase a day permit at the Joeboy Lake self serve fee station located just inside the park boundary.
There is close to 100km of non-ski trails in the park which are perfect for snowshoeing or walking, so we encourage non-skiers to keep off the groomed trails. This helps keep our trails pristine for their intended winter sport usage. The Thunder Bay Nordic Trails membership does not include hiking or snow-shoeing on the trails so a day permit must be purchased.
The park’s rental cabins are available year round and can be reserved by calling 1-888-668-7275. For daily trail updates, please call the Thunder Bay Nordic Trail CRC Communications Snow-Phone at 285-0801 or check out the Ontario Parks Ski Report at https://www.ontarioparks.com/skireport/detail/sleepinggiant