Introduction to Algonquin Park
Introduction to Algonquin Park

Algonquin Provincial Park, established in 1893, is a 7725 km2 protected area in south-central Ontario. Algonquin Park is known for its rugged hills, clear blue lakes, and vast forested areas. Over a million people visit Algonquin Park each year, yet many people have never experienced the solitude, breath-taking panoramas, or challenging portages of Algonquin Park.

If you have never visited Algonquin, or it has been some time since you were last here, this section provides detailed background information about Algonquin's rich history, geography, five major habitat types, and the plants and animals found in the Park.

Begin exploring Algonquin Park by clicking the links on the left:

For more information about Algonquin Park check the Educator Resources section of this web site or log on to the Algonquin Park Web Site at

Deciduous Forest
The deciduous forest (hardwood forest) is the dominant habitat in Algonquin Park. Covering approximately the western two-thirds of the Park, the deciduous forest is defined by poorly-sorted soils called till that retains water for a long period of time.
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Coniferous Forest
When the glaciers melted about 11 000 years ago, meltwaters formed large rivers that flowed from the higher elevations. These rivers deposited sand and gravel primarily on the east side of Algonquin Park.
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Spruce Bogs
Spruce bogs are a northern type of habitat found in Algonquin Park. They are successional habitats between small bodies of water and forests.
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Beaver Ponds
Beaver ponds would not be present in Algonquin Park if it were not for the Beaver. Other than man, the beaver is the only animal in Algonquin Park to dramatically modify its environment in order to meet its needs.
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Lakes and Rivers
Algonquin Park is covered with over 2000 named lakes, comprising about 10% of the total area of the Park. This number of lakes may not seem impressive but any Algonquin hiker or canoeist knows that you don't have to travel very far in Algonquin to find water.
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Suggested Reading
Educators: Learn more about Algonquin’s habitats, download readings and worksheets from the Educator Resources section of the Web Site, or you may also learn more through the following publications:

Algonquin Story
The Friends of Algonquin Park are pleased to announce the reprinting of Algonquin Story. Written by the late Audrey Saunders Miller (1913 - 1993), this book was first issued in 1946 and served as the only published repository of the Park's early history for twenty-eight years until the late Ottelyn Addison produced her Early Days in Algonquin Park in 1974. An index of people and places mentioned in the text, and new maps have been added. Since the late 1970's when the last copies of Algonquin Story were sold, an entire generation has missed the opportunity to read first-hand tales that were gathered by Audrey Saunders at the end of Algonquin Park's first fifty years. With this reprinted edition comes a remedy.

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