ACCESS DENIED to FAMILIES at Mississagi Provincial Park
Click here “North Shore – Access to Public Lands” to view OntORA’s new map showing all of the restricted areas!
WOW, Did you know there are 45 forest management areas in Ontario???????
Check this map out, the North Shore Forest Management Area is most likely one of the areas where there are less restricted areas than any other forest management areas in Northern Ontario, yet look at all the coloured areas on this map that MNR have imposed restrictions to the taxpayers of Ontario. All the shaded or coloured areas on this map signify current restricted areas for the general public. If the restrictions are not yet imposed , you can be certain it will not be long before the MNR takes even more access away from you.
The Northshore directly affects the communities of Espanola, Massey, Webbwood, Spanish, Cutler, Elliot Lake, Blind River, Spragge, Iron Bridge and many other small communities.
On our Crown Land in this area alone , we currently have 11 Provincial Parks, over 100 Cultural Heritage Sites, 3 First Nation Reserves, 8 Crown Reserves and 12 Enhanced Management Areas. These sites were put in place to protect our natural heritage, the environment and our animals.
Most of us believe it is a good thing to have restricted areas for this purpose, what we do not believe in or support is MNR creating a two tier system and allowing “preferred customers only” access some of our most prestigious lands and lakes. In these protected areas or restricted areas the rules must be the same for everyone, no exceptions.
If the Ministry of Natural Resources “MNR”, would have complete transparency when it comes to issues of access, there would not be an issue , but our policy makers continue to close or restrict access to most people in Northern Ontario while allowing more and more Tourist Outfitters and their wealthy guests to have unrestricted access to remote areas.
This policy would make one believe that as a society we are regressing backward to a two tier government system. One for the wealthy and one for the taxpayer.
Yet, when MNR errors in their decisions, and decide to restrict and protect more areas , only to find it is too costly to maintain, do they revert the area back to what it was? of course not, a good example would be Mississagi Provincial Park .
The MNR fact sheet states the park was about 4900 ha in 2000, and now is 8474 ha. Nice enlargement. However it is also one of the 11 Provincial Parks to take a hit in the fall of 2012 and cut out overnight camping entirely and reduce park staff to zero in order to save money.
On the website the sign now says; This park will not operate in the 2013 season. There will be no staff and the facilities will not be maintained. The park will remain a protected area and visitors can continue to enjoy the park ” free of charge ” for day use. The park will be gated and access will be on foot.
What does this mean:
This park is about 20 km from the center of the retirement community of Elliot Lake where the majority of the community are senior citizens.
- No access to young children who cannot walk long distances.
- Very restricted access for the disable or handicap
- Seniors will have a difficult time with the walk in only.
- Will wheelchairs be allowed?
- For those who have gone to Semiwhite Lake with your families, launched your small boat, and had a day outing, sorry access denied no longer allowed.
- This park does not allow you to pick firewood or kindling, guess your fire will have to be a propane stove that you can carry in on your back with everything else.
The park will remain a protected area ; from the people of Ontario
This is what MNR continues to do on forest roads they do not want the people of Ontario using or having access to. The park will be gated and access will be on foot. This area could prove to be a typical example of where the MNR only want to give motorized access to their preferred customers or guests.
This is why OntORA’s values and views on public access leads with:
Eliminate and remove all signs and gates restricting equal public access to the general public
### To view the map alone, click on the “Reference” tab on the top menu (top of web page), and then click on “Maps” ###