We left home a little earlier and begun our drive to Goreski’s Landing hoping not to be stuck in long weekend traffic. We made pretty good time and got to the park around 7 pm. This was our first visit to Goreski’s and weren’t sure what to expect due to the mixed reviews online. I don’t put much faith in reviews anyway, as we’re all looking for something different camping and things that may really upset some people, we’re pretty chill with. Above is a photo of our site #12. It was the last site on the row of transient sites. It seems Goreski’s, although a huge park, has very few transient sites and many more seasonal sites. We asked at the park when we came in and apparently there are only the twelve reservable sites for overnight. Later we’d heard from some RVing in Canada friends camping there the same weekend, that there were some smaller sites along the canal. Not sure about that, but a quick call to the park would confirm what’s available. Our site had a nice view of the canal where boats pulled in and out all day. Across the canal was also a bar and the campground office. Here are some more photos of our site.
We spent a relaxing Thursday night having a campfire and checking out the campground on our bikes. Since Goreski’s is also a marina on Lake Scugog, there were a large amount of boat slips and a few different water channels. They also have a full service marina with a refueling station.
Rain moved in by about 9 am on Friday, so we just relaxed and watched some TV and movies inside. It rained off and on pretty much all day, but we made the best of it and had fun. We really didn’t mind at all and the rain was good to see! I brought along some summery drink ingredients to try out some new mixed drinks. Some I found on Pinterest and some were my own mix. All were good, but my favorite was a my own mix of Coconut Rum, Blue Curacoa, Pina Colada mix and orange juice. Yum!!!! Throw in an episode of my favorite show – Murdoch Mysteries and the day just couldn’t be better!
Sometime in the afternoon, while it was still raining, I did something I don’t usually do – I fell asleep listening to the rain on the roof . At some point Dave joined me. We woke up at seven o’clock!! Lol, we never, ever do that! So, it was a late dinner and campfire. I also made Nutella Crescent rolls for dessert. First time trying this easy recipe and wow! The fireworks were being lit everywhere around us and we could see quite a few. The park was also putting on a fireworks display, but not until Saturday night.
Rving in Canada friends, Bob and Sally joined us for our fire on Friday night and we enjoyed the ambiance of the live band at the bar across the canal. Very relaxing! When the band stopped playing, one of the young kids in the site beside us broke out his acoustic guitar and played some tunes and very well I might add! Here are some photos from Friday night at the park.
Saturday was to be our kayaking day. Both of us had been looking forward to kayaking on Lake Scugog. We checked out the map in the park office and it’s a large, but very shallow lake. We weren’t sure if we could just launch from the channel across from our site, but it turned out we could. It was a slight slope to the water and there were large, slippery rocks, but we were able to launch ok. We used the low dock to get out when we came back. Well, Dave did. He learned from my mistake trying to get out on the slippery rocks! Not a very graceful exit for me lol. Here’s a photo of where we launched.
Lake Scugog was beautiful! The wind was blowing, as it had all weekend, but it was refreshing on the water. The motor boat traffic on Scugog is fairly heavy, so you do need to watch that if kayaking, or canoeing. We really didn’t catch any fish to speak of, just some little fish we could have used for bait! When I left the channel, I headed North and found a really neat abandoned property. The boat house looked disused and what I could see of the house and associated buildings, they too looked boarded up and abandoned. It was posted, so I didn’t go ashore. Turns out, this place is known as “Seven Mile Island”. You can read about it here. http://www.scugogheritage.com/misc/sevenmile.htm
Here are some photos of our time out!
And of course a few photos of Seven Mile Island!
Saturday was a beautiful day weather wise! It was very warm and sunny! It was a perfect day for kayaking! We came back and spent the rest of the day relaxing and putting the kayaks back on the truck. This was our first time towing the fiver with the the new kayak rack set up on. We had put the kayaks on a couple days early and drove around local to make sure the set up worked. Well, it didn’t work well. Within one trip to Welland and back, the back saddles which were reclaimed from our original set up before the fifth wheel, had come dangerously loose. Dave stopped at Outdoors Oriented and they set him up with a couple Malone saddles and a couple foam blocks. That held for a day, then loosened while I was driving locally. Dave changed the tie down method and used only ratchet straps. This seemed to do the trick. We had no further issues driving up to Goreski’s or back home.
Saturday night we enjoyed another campfire and even better live entertainment from the bar across the canal! We walked around the campground again and enjoyed some strawberries with marshmallow creme over the campfire. This recipe was ok, but the strawberries needed to be totally dry for the marshmallow creme to stick. Our original plan was to make either campfire donuts or the mozzarella onion ring recipe I really wanted to try, but the firepits were huge and quite deep below ground. We had our grate with us, but couldn’t find a way to place it over the pit. Another time I suppose!
I managed to get a few photos of the beautiful fireworks display the park put on. It was spectacular and we were able to see it from our campsite!
Sunday we were packed up and heading home by 11 am. In traffic, it took us 2.5 hours to get home despite using the 407 ETR. I wanted to get home a little earlier so I could get the fiver cleaned out for our next trip which is less than a week away. Mission accomplished!
So, for a review of Goreski’s Landing! I’d have to say, kind of like a disclaimer, if you’re a die hard provinical park only fan, don’t camp here. If you want no other experience but wilderness and privacy, don’t camp here!
We are open to trying new experiences and campgrounds and never get bent out of shape when we find a park that’s different. So, lack of privacy isn’t the end of the trip for us, nor do close neighbors ruin our weekend. That being said – there is only one campsite in this overnight area with any decent privacy – #1. The rest have zero privacy, especially on a long weekend when every site is taken. The sites are fairly large with a gravel pad. All sites had 30 amp and water hookups. We were able to maneuver our fiver onto the site, but the grassy median in front the campground road and the canal gave us very little room to back it in.
The park staff were very friendly and helpful. The park picks up your garbage and recycling right at your campsite, so don’t bother looking for garbage cans! The firewood is $8.50 for a decent size bag and it’s dry! The park store carries few grocery items, but much in the line of bait, tackle and boating items. It is after all a full service marina! They have a propane refill station at the park in case you need any cylinders refilled.
Within the park is a large playground, wading pool area and heated swimming pool. There are two launches to launch larger boats and of course kayaks and canoes. We lucked out and were able to launch right from our site.
There is a full restaurant and bar located near the campground office, cash only which looks pretty nice. At the end of the day, there is a lot of boat traffic coming in park and grab a bit to eat or a drink. The outdoor patio was packed every evening! As mentioned, there was live entertainment every night and you could hear them well from any of the overnight sites. We enjoyed this! We sat around our campfire listening to some very good music each night! No complaints!
So, in closing, if you’re looking for peace and quiet and privacy, Goreski’s is not the park for you. If you want a good clean park with friendly staff, things to do for little kids or even a nice place to launch a kayak and spend a night or two, then give Goreski’s a try. In the off season, any site would be great, but, in the busy summer or on long weekends, #1 is the only private one. Goreski’s Landing is a Parkbridge Resort and you can reserve online and find the campground map. I called to reserve because our fifth wheel is so large and we’d never visited before. You cannot request a particular site online, but can do so by calling. Here are some links!
And a link to my Picasa album: