Discover Manitouwadge, Ontario: A Blend of History and Adventure
The Rich History of Manitouwadge, Ontario
Manitouwadge, a township in the Canadian province of Ontario, is nestled in the Thunder Bay District, at the northern terminus of Highway 614. It is situated 331 kilometres east of Thunder Bay and 378 kilometres north-west of Sault Ste. Marie. The name Manitouwadge, or Manidoowaazh in Ojibwe, translates to "Cave of the Great Spirit," reflecting its roots in the wide-ranging territory of the Ojibwe people.
The town was established by the General Engineering Co Limited (later known as Noranda and now part of Xstrata) after staking claims in 1953 to support a copper mine. Another notable mine in Manitouwadge is the Willroy mine, named after the "Weekend Prospectors" William Dawidowich and Roy Barker. Full production at both mines began in 1957. From 1954 to 1974, Manitouwadge was classified as an Improvement District, before becoming an incorporated township in 1975.
In the early 1980s, the discovery of gold at Hemlo, near the intersection of highways 614 and 17, about 50 kilometres south of the town, led to a significant population boom. However, the closure of the Geco mine in 1995 and the Golden Giant Mine in 2006 led to a significant decrease in the town's population.
Manitouwadge, Ontario Today
While mining has always been a significant economic activity in Manitouwadge, forestry also plays a crucial role in the town's economy. Currently, the town is actively seeking new industries and residents, offering some of the lowest housing and commercial property prices in Ontario. Manitouwadge boasts year-round outdoor recreation, including a 10-run ski hill, snowmobile trails, excellent summer and winter fishing, kilometres of ATV trails, and canoe and kayak routes.
Demographics of Manitouwadge, Ontario
According to the 2021 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, Manitouwadge had a population of 1,974, marking a 1.9% increase from its 2016 population of 1,937. With a land area of 352.17 km2, it had a population density of 5.6/km2 in 2021.
Outdoor Recreation in Manitouwadge, Ontario
Manitouwadge offers a plethora of outdoor activities. Hiking trails in the summer and snowmobile trails in the winter are abundant. The Kiwissa Ski Club offers thirteen runs for downhill skiing, and the Northern Trails Ski Club manages two locations with cross-country ski trails. From the top of the Kiwissa ski hill, one can enjoy a panoramic view of the entire town.
Climate of Manitouwadge, Ontario
Manitouwadge experiences a humid continental climate bordering on a subarctic climate, typical of Northern Ontario. Summers are generally warm and rainy with cool nights, while winters are typically very cold and snowy. Winter usually begins in late October and lasts into April.