Wildwood Conservation Area near St. Marys, along with its counterparts within the Upper Thames River Conservation Authority (UTRCA) in Woodstock (Pittock) and London (Fanshawe), officially opens for the 2014 outdoor recreation season on Friday, April 25 at 8 a.m.
“The UTRCA employs over 70 full-time and seasonal staff to provide quality outdoor recreational opportunities in Southwestern Ontario,” explained a news release this week. “Our conservation areas are popular for camping, boating, biking, hiking, swimming, fishing and picnicking.”
An annual pass from the UTRCA gives access to all three conservation areas! For information about each, visit their websites at www.wildwoodconservationarea.ca, www.fanshaweconservationarea.ca, and www.pittockconservationarea.ca.
New for 2014 at Wildwood Conservation Area, located just east of St. Marys, are a fresh coat of paint and new counter tops in the washrooms, new barbecue stands in the day use area, an numerous upgrades to the park’s trails.
Wildwood Conservation Area offers 431 campsites; a large lake for swimming, boating, sailing and fishing; modern washrooms and laundry facilities; canoe rentals; 30 kilometres of biking and hiking trails; summer recreation programs; a peaceful day use area; and participation in the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters “TackleShare” program — providing fishing gear for everyone!
On the 2014 calendar of events at Wildwood are:
• May 24 — “Experience Wildwood” open house (a “Healthy Hikes” event);
• June 14 — The Wild Ride Mountain Bike Festival in support of the Lung Association;
• July 5-13 — Family Fishing Week (no fishing license needed);
• July 12 — Annual Catch and Release Family Fishing Derby;
• Aug. 24 — Wildwood Memorial Tree Dedication