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What is Winter Like in Ontario?

by Paul Petersen
What is Winter Like in Ontario?

Canada is often referred to as the Great White North, most likely because it’s the second largest country in the world and is known for the amount of Arctic frozen tundra and snow within it.

Just how harsh are the winters? If you’re looking at real estate in Toronto you’ll want to know more about the cold weather months before making your move to Ontario.

It Depends on Where You Are

Ontario is a large province, so your location will determine how harsh a winter you may see. The northern part of the province has longer and colder winters than southern Ontario.

The temperature in most of the province is often below 0°C, day and night.

It’s Cold, of Course

Naturally, winter in Ontario is a chilly one. Temperatures can get as cold as -50 degrees Celsius in the Northern parts, whereas the average winter temperature in other areas is -4.6 degrees Celsius.

On the whole, Canada is one of the chilliest countries in the world. It contends with Russia for first place as the coldest nation in the world, with an average daily annual temperature of -5.6 degrees Celsius.

It Doesn’t Last Forever

The typical winter months for Ontario are from November through mid-March. The average temperature mid-winter in January hovers around -5.5 degrees Celsius.

It’s Not Just Snow

You will see snowfall in winter, but you’ll also experience crisp winds and blue skies often punctuated with sunshine.

But There is Certainly a Lot of White Stuff

The average yearly snowfall for Ontario is 142.6 centimeters total, or 56 inches. Measurements increase the farther north you go.

You Don’t Have to Sit Inside

Just because it’s chilly or snowing, that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to do outdoors in Ontario in the winter. In fact, Canada is very adept at making fun available outside, no matter the weather.

Blue Mountain in Collingwood is a favorite destination for skiers and snowboarders. You can learn to go ski-shoeing, which is a skiing session done wearing altai skis instead of snowshoes, at Bellevue Valley Lodge.

It may seem odd to say biking is popular in the winter, but it is if you’re got fat tires. Northern Ontario has many fat bike venues, like Kivi Park and Crimson Ridge.

Cross country skiing is a great way to stay healthy and active in the winter in Ontario, and you can slide your way along the trails of Stokely Creek Lodge’s Chocolate Express or Hiawatha Highlands’ Snowfest.

Join in on a loppet, or long-distance endurance race, at the Sleeping Giant Loppet near Thunder Bay.

You can also hop on a horse to take in the snowy sites. Winter trail rides are offered at Von Doeler’s Ranch, which is located halfway between North Bay and Mattawa.

Thrill seekers may want to get into ice climbing, a sport that utilizes ice axes and crampons for scaling mountainsides. You can even ascend a vertical curtain of ice that on warmer days is a waterfall, much like the tours given by Liv Outside in Muskoka.