There was a skiff of snow on the ground as we rolled along Highway 101 and pulled up to the closed gates. As we began walking along the road into the park, I thought back to my earlier visit to Greenwater Provincial Park and wondered if it would be as well preserved.
In little time we were greeted by a ruffled grouse, another similiarity to the aforementioned park. I was suprised, however, to flush about 5 more before we left.
As one who frequents Provincial Parks for camping, when I heard that there were a few that had been closed, permanently, I knew I would have to take the opportunity to have a look at how nature reclaims these spaces. I spend a lot of time in Gogama, and that seemed the perfect jumping-off point for a trip to the former Greenwater Provincial Park. As it turns out, once wouldn't be enough.
It was a beautiful day while camping on the shores of Lake Superior when we hit the open road to do some exploring. There were several targets on our list this fine day, but this was a chance find on Google Maps.
I was initially thrown off. From the satellite photos, it seemed obvious that it was a race track. Street View, however, showed a Young Drivers of Canada sign over the gate. Apparently it was a driver training facility. But there were grandstands... Clearly this place had had at least two lives.
As is often the case with these things, I wasn't completely sure as to the exact location of this town when I arrived. In fact, I wasn't completely sure there was even anything left to see. However, we were on vacation, we were in the area, give or take a few hundred kilometres, why not go take a look.
When we were close to the spot, I decided to park the truck and consider two possible directions we could begin hiking. One seemed most likely, so I chose to eliminate the other first. As it turns out, both were right.
Completed in 1954 by the US Air Force, this radar station was part of the Pinetree Line, a group of radar sites across Canada used as part of the defense against the Soviet Union during the Cold War. It was manned by the 914th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron.