Day 38: Carol’s Campsite & RV Park to North Bay’s Franklin Campground

King & Ethel

From Sudbury to Ottawa, you can expect population, traffic and francophone density to increase.

Nipissing Lake is located between the Ottawa River and Georgian Bay, which is part of Lake Huron. Nipissing means “big lake” in Algonquin. The lake is unique because it is host to islands that are part of an eroded volcanic pipe. Volcanic pipes are formed by violent eruptions in an unusually deep volcano. Lava flows to the surface and then hardens in the same way Champagne would flow if you uncorked it below the surface.

Sturgeon Falls, population 6 383, is a tranquil town next to the Sturgeon River. It was here that I was spoken to in French for the first time as I headed east, in a grocery store. The downtown’s streets are paved in tindle stone, giving it a European feel. At present, 80% of the residents of Sturgeon Falls identify themselves as francophone. If you are looking for a good place to go for a swim, head to the corner of King & Ethel. If you want to spend the evening nearby, take a right turn on Dutrisac Road on the east end of town and head to Dutrisac Cottages, 3 kilometres south of HWY 17.

North Bay is located between Lake Nipissing and Trout Lake and straddles the Ottawa River Watershed to the west and the Great Lakes Basin to the east. The city is also located at the intersection of HWY 11 and HWY 17.

Approaching North Bay, expect to see a sign on the highway stating that bikes are not allowed on the road. Locals tell me that people bike on the road and that the rule is not enforced.

If you need work done on your bicycle head to Cycle Works.

North Bay is home to Nipissing University and Canadore College, combining for a total of 7 000 full-time students. Tourism, transportation and CFB North Bay play a prominent role in the city’s economy.

Some attractions in North Bay include the Community Museum & Heritage Centre in the downtown area. Also, near the intersection of Seymour Street and HWY 17 / HWY 11 is the Dionne Quintuplets Museum, where you can learn about the five identical international superstars in their original farmhouse.

Because North Bay is located on a watershed divide, it was necessary for Fur Traders to portage between Trout Lake and Lake Nipissing. Today it is possible to follow some of the same paths that Voyageurs lugged their heavy canoes over. Many men died under the strain of their load and are buried in the area.

In 1961, workers were digging in Champlain Park on the banks of the La Vase River when they discovered artifacts from the past indicating that this area was the location of Fort Laronde, a historic fur trading post.

Your destination for the evening is the Franklin Motel & Trailer Park. This popular campground is located near the shore of Lake Nipissing and has an outdoor pool. Champlain Tent & Trailer Park is located 3 kilometres further south of this campground on the shore of Lake Nipissing.

Sudbury to North Bay
0.0Leave Carol’s Campsite & RV Park biking west on
HWY 69 S.
3.6Exit left and circle 270º clockwise to gain HWY 17 heading east.
5.6Stay on HWY 17 and cycle through Lake Laurentian Conservation Area.
14.9HWY 17 turns 90º to your right. Turn right to
remain on HWY 17.
22.9Pass through Wahnapitae and cross over the
Wanhapitae River.
54.2Intersection of HWY 17 & HWY 535.
57.4Cross over the Veuve River.
62.9Warren and the intersection of HWY 17 & HWY 539.
76.6Intersection of HWY 17 & HWY 575 (N).
77.5Intersection of HWY 17 & HWY 64 (S) and the town of Verner. HWY 17 & HWY 64 merge.
92.7Sturgeon Falls. Downtown, HWY 64 / HWY 17 becomes HWY 17.
107.2Little Sturgeon River empties into Lake Nipissing here.
124.9Enter North Bay on HWY 17.
130.2At the intersection of HWY 17 & Algonquin Avenue, HWY 17 becomes HWY 17 / HWY 11.
132.2Cycle between Thompson Park on your right and Northgate Shopping Centre on your left.
132.7Intersection of HWY 17 / HWY 11 & Fisher Street. Turn right here.
134.2Intersection of Fisher Street and Main Street E. Turn left.
135.2Cross over railroad tracks. Main Street E becomes Lakeshore Drive here.
138.4Franklin Motel & Trailer Park.

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