The earliest artifacts uncovered in Lake Superior Provincial Park have been carbon dated and identified as coming from the Laurel culture as early as 500 B.C. Native peoples gathered in summer settlements on Lake Superior's shoreline and moved to inland hunting grounds for the winter.
The earliest artifacts uncovered in Lake Superior Provincial Park have been carbon dated and identified as coming from the Laurel culture as early as 500 B.C. Native peoples gathered in summer settlements on Lake Superior's shoreline and moved to inland hunting grounds for the winter. A unique cultural site can be seen at Agawa Rock Pictographs. Here Ojibwe left images of animals, figures and more mystical creatures. The pictographs are estimated to be between 150 and 400 years old. Etienne Brule is believed to be the first European to see Lake Superior in 1622. Over the next hundred years many European fur traders and explorers settled on the shores of Lake Superior. During this period the mapping of the lake progressed rapidly and by 1700 its basic shape and character were a matter of record. By the early 1900s timber licenses were issued for pulp, white birch and white pine in the Agawa area and by 1918 the Agawa River drive was in progress. During the same period Group of Seven painters Lawren Harris, J.E.H. MacDonald, and Frank Johnston made the first boxcar excursions to the park area. On subsequent trips A.Y. Jackson and Arthur Lismer traveled by hand car, on foot or by canoe to paint numerous canvasses within Lake Superior Provincial Park. In 1944 Lake Superior Provincial Park was officially established; the park protects a substantial section of the Lake Superior shoreline and was set aside for the enjoyment of the people of Ontario. Initially, development of the park was limited due to inaccessibility, but with the completion of Highway 17 in 1960, the Agawa Bay Campground was officially opened to the public. In 1967 Lake Superior Provincial Park was classified as a natural environment park in which emphasis was given to the educational and recreational benefit of people through eco-activities, such as hiking, nature observation, canoeing and kayaking. Today, Lake Superior Provincial Park encompasses 1600 km2 (618 mi2) and remains as beautiful and rugged as ever. Visitors can now enjoy both backcountry and campground camping, over 100 km of hiking trails, paddling, wildlife viewing, fishing and a Visitor Centre.
Want to know more? You'll find exciting tales and fascinating descriptions in our Superior Stories booklet.