Discover Camping

Image – Yours Outdoors, Winter Camping

Awaken to the gentle whisper of fresh snow settling upon your tent or cabin. A serene quiet blankets the world, punctuated only by the crisp bite of the cold air. Yet, nestled within your snowy sanctuary, you find warmth and comfort. In this tranquil moment, a thought crosses your mind: why had you not ventured into winter camping sooner? For in this serene landscape, you discover the true wonder and beauty of the season.

Maybe this year is the first year you tried fall camping, or maybe you’re just not ready to give up being outdoors and feeling one with nature. Whatever your reason, if you are thinking about trying winter camping, you are in for a magical experience that is vastly underrated.

Don’t be put off at the thought of cold weather – the best part of winter camping is it gives you an excuse to really amp up the coziness. I’m talking about hot chocolate with marshmallows cradled between woolly mitts while you sit beside a roaring fire.

Where to Camp in Winter

Unfortunately not all Ontario Parks or private campgrounds are open for winter camping, but there are still a few good options available. Check out these spots for a winter camping experience in the Haliburton Highlands.

Silent Lake Provincial Park

Open from December to March for roofed accommodation rentals. The park has seven yurts and 10 sleep cabins available for rent and over 19-kilometres of hiking trails. Please note you need to book two days in a row for roofed accommodations….

Phone: 613.339.2807

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From snowmobiling to howling with wolves, strap on your snowshoes and explore this winter ‘wonderland’. With over a dozen cabins located in Haliburton Forest…..


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Haliburton Highlands Water Trails (HHWT)

Choose between the Frost Centre Area which has a few road access campsites along Sherborne Lake Access Road. The Poker Lakes Area access points are accessible by four-wheel drive vehicles only. Reservations can be made through the website

Phone: 866.364.4498

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Camp Adelaide

More glamping than camping, enjoy geo domes in the forest or lakeside bubble dome where you will enjoy the night stars while you sleep. There is ice skating and snowshoe trails onsite and ice fishing huts are available…

Phone: 365.888.6698

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Algonquin Yeti Paddling

Hot-tent curious? Find out about this comfortable way to winter camp. They also offer bushcraft workshops and guided snowshoe hikes into South Algonquin. AYP guides will set you up for a positive fun winter night experience!

Phone: 905.706.3978

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Tryfan Forest

800 acre of privately owned managed forest and wilderness reserve which borders on crown land. With many trails and diverse landscape there’s something for all outdoor enthusiasts no matter what your experience level is! watch a winter camping video from Trygan….


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Gear Up for Cold Weather

Winter camping in the Haliburton Highlands demands careful preparation, with your gear playing a pivotal role in your comfort and safety. Don’t underestimate the chill factor—ensuring warmth for your extremities is essential for an enjoyable outdoor adventure. From insulated footwear to cozy headwear, every piece counts when temperatures plummet. Prioritize gear that offers both waterproofing and insulation, guarding against the biting cold even during the coldest of days.

Tips for Success: Invest in snow pants to shield your attire from moisture, a crucial step in maintaining warmth throughout your excursion.

Pack the Thermals

In the frigid embrace of winter, your base layers become your best ally against the cold. Layering up with quality thermal wear, particularly garments crafted from insulating wool, forms the cornerstone of your preparation. Opt for outer layers that facilitate easy removal, as your body heat will quickly soar with even minimal physical exertion amidst the wintry landscape.

Tips for Success: Resist the temptation to slumber in multiple layers, as this can lead to discomfort the following day. Instead, strip down to your base attire before nestling into your sleeping bag. And don’t forget to don a snug toque to safeguard against heat loss from your head.

Get Moving

Winter unveils a realm of enchantment within the Haliburton Highlands, beckoning you to explore its snow-draped terrain. Equip yourself with snowshoes, ice cleats or cross-country skis, while embracing the exhilarating journey through this frost-kissed wonderland. Then traverse the silent woods, where the nature echoes amidst the crisp air, and each footprint tells a tale of bustling wildlife.

Tips for Success: Dress in layers, ready to shed as your exertions kindle warmth within. Carrying a thermos with steaming coffee or hot chocolate, offers a comforting respite amidst your adventure as you bask in the serenity of the winter forest.

Look to the Stars

As winter’s blankets the landscape, the heavens above offer a celestial spectacle like no other. The cold, crisp, dry air, holds less moisture than in summer, which creates extraordinarily clear skies filled with brilliant stars. Find solace beneath this expansive canopy, where the quiet majesty of the cosmos unfolds, painting a picture of awe-inspiring beauty.

Tips for Success: Find a clearing in the forest and then lay back in the snow and feel small beneath the vastness of the galaxy. The Haliburton Forest and Wild Life Reserve is considered one of the darkest skies in Ontario.

Also read a couple of stories about Star Gazing – Looking at the Stars and the 2024 Winter Celestial Calendar


Eat Up

This is one thing to really get excited about for winter camping – you will need to eat more than you normally do (yay!). Keeping your body warm burns a lot more calories than normal which means you need to fuel up with carbohydrate-rich foods to be sure you are have enough fuel to burn. Plan ahead for some quick or easy to make meals that will fill your belly. The good news is you won’t need to worry about keeping food frozen until you are ready to eat it!

Tips for Success: Some good winter camping meals that are carb-laden, quick and easy to heat up are oatmeal for breakfast, soups and stews. Make a spaghetti sauce ahead of time and bring it with you to reheat with some pasta. Bring plenty of coffee or tea, hot chocolate, and marshmallows, too.

Want help creating a Winter Experience

Looking for help and advise?  Check out AYP, Yours Outdoors and/or Deep Roots Adventure for guided camping experiences.