ATVing & UTVing in Wawa, Ontario and Thereabouts, Eh.

| October 8, 2009 | 0 Comments

whereiswawaWe got an invite to go check out Wawa and the surrounding areas and this one we couldn’t pass up. Wawa is located about 3 hours drive time at a distance of 141.05 miles miles west of Sault Saint Marie Ontario.

by Patrick Saunders

I mapped my route out in the link below. My trip was a little over 6 hours and 43 minutes with a distance of 317.94 miles miles from Escanaba MI.

We would be meeting with our hosts Bonnie & Willy who own the Bristol Hotelin Wawa. You can check them out in our destinations page in our web site.

pat2They also own Bristol Off-Roading Outfitters, and they would be our ATVing guides while we were in Wawa.

The ride up was fun & uneventful until I hit the Ontario Border. As soon as I got out of Sault Canada the rain started, and turned what would be a really fun drive into a mess all the way to Wawa. I passed some really scenic spots that were full of water falls and beautiful vista’s but did not dare to take pictures and kill my camera.

As soon as I hit Wawa the rain stopped and I saw clear sky’s. First order of business was to take a picture of the goose that guards the entrance to Wawa and the north. Then it was off to see what was left of the town that I had once visited over 30 years ago. Wawa has been affected by the low economy just like everybody else in this country. There was in my opinion on this drive to many small business’s boarded up, and closed down for lack of tourism monies.

pat3I was greeted at the Bristol Hotel by Bonnie, one of the owners, and I was immediately taken back by the excellent northern Ontario Hospitality. I felt like I was back in the Maritimes again, and that is a fine memory to dwell on. I was told to park out front, positioning the trailer with it’s precious cargo of atv’s in front of my hotel window. This allowed me to keep an eye on things, even though I would not think that anyone would even think of touching anything anyway. My room was very clean, comfortable, and fit the bill quite nicely. I have to say that this hotel has the best water pressure of any hotel I have ever stayed in.

Bottom line, I would not consider staying anywhere else when I come back again.

pat5I arrived way before the other crew members and had a chance to set down with our Guide Willie and go over our available route options for the following two days that we would be atving. Willie is very knowledgeable about his area and is very active in hunting and snowmobiling too. So he can take care of almost any kind of outdoor activity you would like to do.

I unloaded our machines and checked them over closely for I was expecting to hit some really rouged terrain over the next couple of days riding.

Day one found us leaving a little late after lingering over a late breakfast. The sky’s were blue and there was no treat of rain for the day. As you explore the pictures below you will see how great an area this is. Our first stop was the Goose, then off down the trails to explore the waterfalls.

pat7After that we hit trail after trail, power lines, and passed more lakes then I could keep counting. Be forewarned that this area is very hilly and takes a bit of skill to negotiate, but can be done quite easily if you take your time. I know, you are saying right now, Patrick taking his time, yup yup, not.

I chose not to hit too much mud on the first day, but if you choose to do so, there is plenty of opportunities to find all the mud you want too. So far the terrain was hilly, rocky, sandy, monster ravines, and wild, but it made for some very nice riding.

pat8We stopped for lunch on an overlook that gave us a great view of Lake Superior. My thanks go to Willie & Chico for sharing their lunches with us. That blueberry muffin made me want more Chico, hint hint 😉 Willie pointed out an Island that was over twenty miles away and could be seen very clearly that day. He also pointed out an abundance of fresh wolf & bear tracks. It had rained the night before, so we knew that we had company not too long ago.

We also visited several dams along our route and was told that this region supplies much electricity to the rest of Ontario from their local hydro electric dams.

After doing what seemed like a whirl wind of a trip, shooting video & stills we managed to make it almost sixty miles. I know we are really pokey, eh.

pat9Another evening of good comradeship with our new friends, another cool night of sleep, and of course another late breakfast, we were ready to hit the trails, but off in a new direction. Our destination today was Hawk Junction I would find and eat the best hamburger that I have ever had in this lifetime.

Contact Info:
Big Bear Hotel
109 Front,
Hawk Junction, ON P0S 1G0

Yes Mike, I did tip the cook. My thanks go out to the owner of the Big Bear Hotel located in Hawk Junction Ontario who has managed to stay a float in these troubled times. Times have been hard on these people with a drop in snowmobiling & atv tourism. If you are in the area please drop in and sample their cooking, I know you will be glad you did.

pat11One of the cool things about Hawk Junction is the fact that this is an active rain head and destination spot to head further north to Hearst ON by train.

Along our trip to Hawk Junction we passed even more lakes then yesterday. This area is simply amazing with it’s very unique topography of rocks, sand, lakes, and vista’s. We passed several mines that had played out and were left abandoned to wither away in time.

This time of the year is blueberry season and we ate our fill as we worked our way to Hawk Junction. We also noticed more fresh bear tracks and were made aware that we were not the only ones using this trail. This trip seemed to build more confidence in our greener riders. I made sure that I passed along subtle tips on how to approach driving through mud holes, streams, and also how to best tackle hills. I bet you are rolling your eyes, Patrick subtle, yup yup. After all if you use good driving techniques, your machine you are driving will last longer and will appreciate you better too! Also you will have less impact on the environment too, which will allow us to save our riding areas for other generations to enjoy too

pat12The second days riding gave way to landscape that looked like it was the moon. More rivers, hills, barren bad lands, mud, and back into pristine wilderness all in one ride. Just a note that this bad lands area is where the best blueberry picking is.

This ride was a time for us to make new friends and really bond like brothers. I feel at home in Northern Ontario, and it is the people that welcome you with open arms that makes you feel that way. The scenery is just a bonus!

We took the KYMCO UXV 500 as a camera platform, and it went everywhere that the atv’s went without any hesitation. This little machine totally blew me away when it went up the same hills, went through the same mud pits, and cruised down the same tight trails that I took my Can-Am Renegade X 800R on. What really put the icing on the cake was when we went to the gas station after riding all day. I had one bar left on the Reni and the KYMCO UXV still had over 3/4 of a tank of gas. The driver asked us why we were stopping for gas, eh!

pat14We were running GBC Grim Reapers on both the Can-Am Renegade X 800R & the KYMCO UXV 500. These tires worked flawlessly and I highly recommend them for riding in this type of terrain. Either machine never got stuck, and could make it up the steepest hill with out hesitation. Climbing over rocks was a breeze. Thumbs up GBC!

We managed to poky through another 60 mile day, and made it back in time to attend Chico’s birthday party. I know, Chico was with us, so it wouldn’t have started without him, right, well maybeeeee not. We sit down to Chico’s birthday party as new friends and enjoyed a very nice evening of comradeship.

After washing the swamp off the rides, loading and fastening everything down for the trip home the following day, I called it a day, and hit the rack to mull over my thoughts about how nice a time I had pat15with my new friends from Wawa. All I could do is dream that night about when and how I could do another trip to this beautiful area of Northern Ontario.

I drove home the following day after a 5:30 early start in anticipation of getting some pictures that I had missed on the way to Wawa, but guess what, yup, it rained all the way to the Sault & the border.

So Chico, I do have an excuse to come back to visit you guys, to take some more pictures, eh!

Bristol Motel Contact info if you can’t find them on our Travel destination page in our web site,

Web Site:
Phone: 1-705-856-2385
Toll Free: 1-866-481-9826


170 Mission Rd
Hwy 101
P. O. Box 18
Wawa, ON P0S1K0

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Category: Featured, Kymco, Trail Rides

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