Chutes Provincial Park: Video Review

If you love the natural beauty of waterfalls, Chutes Provincial Park is a must-see location. Located in Massey, Ontario only 1 km from the Trans-Canada Highway, it is the only provincial park located between Sudbury and Sault Ste Marie.

In addition to the beautiful waterfall views, it also offers a 6 km hiking trail, fenced off-leash dog exercise area, sandy dog beach, and a quiet campground where we were able to hear the falls in the distance all night long.

In this review, we will share some of the beautiful views from our trip to Chutes Provincial Park including a first-hand look at the dog exercise area and dog beach followed by our review and important information about what you can look forward to at the park.

This video is part of The Kas Pack’s Ontario Parks Reviews series. CLICK HERE to visit our YouTube channel and subscribe to get notifications when new parks are added.

Chutes Provincial Park – July 2022

John: On the road again! This time to Chutes. See ya in about 5 hours.

Dog Exercise Area (1:58)

Britt: So, one of the great things that Chutes has to offer is actually this here, which is a fenced-in pet exercise area. As you can see, there is a fence all the way around it to keep the pets secure. There are picnic tables to lounge at. It’s a nice space if you want to just hang out and spend some time with your pet and not have to worry about on leash, off leash, all those rules that you usually have to navigate when you’re at parks and visiting.

John: Yep! Absolutely!

Our Review (5:13)

Britt: Hi, everyone! We’re coming to you from Chutes Provincial Park. We’re here for the weekend. Well, actually, I guess we’re here for 5 days.

John: Ya, it’s the civic holiday here in Ontario, so we took full advantage of it.

Britt: And for us, as a group, The Kas Pack, it was a really special weekend because yesterday was actually Lucifer’s ‘Gotcha Day’ anniversary. So, we celebrated that this little guy here has been with the family for a whole year.

John: So, his weekend entailed lots of treats, specials, hikes, swimming, all that fun stuff.

Britt: And squirrels.

John: And squirrels.

Britt: There are so many squirrels in this park, and they are very vocal and very unafraid, I guess. Like, they run right up onto your site. Even with 3 dogs here, we saw them on our site all weekend long.

John: Ya, they’ll definitely share their opinion with you!

Campsites (6:12)

Britt: So, the big thing we found here at the park was that we would classify the sites as ‘semi-private’. So, there are some options that are a little more private but you don’t have the backcountry sites or the walk-in sites quite the same as you would have at some other parks. There are some walk-in sites, but the walk-in sites they have, you can completely see the site from the road. You just have to park and walk down to it. But, it’s still completely visible, fully accessible.

There are some great sites that are on the more private end of the spectrum. Like, the one we have here is really nice, but we can still see our neighbour here a little bit and have all weekend.

tent set up in the forest | Chutes Provincial Park: Video Review
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Our tent up surrounded by trees, showing how beautifully private the area is

John: It’s just planning accordingly. Do your setup properly. And, if you want that privacy, just set it up accordingly.

Britt: For us, we just put the KUMA, which is our dining shelter, over here. We’ve got the KUMA Bear Den Gazebo and we put it kinda in that area to block off our neighbours so that we had a little bit more private space to hang out with the pups. And they weren’t set off quite as easily.

John: It was all pretty good with that.

Britt: Ya!

Park Store (7:25)

John: So, the Park Store. When you come in and register, basically the building where you can register, you get your patches and stickers, some of the merchandise like sweaters, hoodies, and all that stuff there. They really don’t have…

Britt: Apparently Indy wants to give his two cents, so he’s vocalizing his opinion here for a moment. He wanted to give his review.

John: Not enough treats, apparently.

Britt: But he’s sleeping now so that was short-lived.

John: So, anyway. You can get your merchandise there – your stickers, stamps, or not stamps but patches, shirts, and all that stuff. You can get firewood, of course. But you can’t get ice. You can’t get any kind of other groceries or stuff to get you by for the weekend.

But, when you leave the campground here, take a quick left, and over on your right side is a locally owned store. Basically, it’s a little convenience store that’s open 7 days a week. They have basically all the basic necessities that you would require, especially ice.

Firewood (9:02)

John: They do sell firewood there, but also kitty-corner there is a place that sells wood. I think it’s like $12 for a bin. We bought 5 bins for $60, so $12 per bin. It has lasted us from Saturday, it’s Sunday now, so we’ve still got a fair bit that we’re going to use.

Britt: It was good quality. I mean, it caught fire fairly quickly, but it lasted a long time. Once you get it burning, it’s not like it’s gone in 2 seconds.

John: Ya, exactly!

Dog Beach (9:37)

Britt: For those of you who are bringing your dogs or your pets. Obviously, I mean if you’re following The Kas Pack, we are a pet-friendly outdoor travel site. So, I’m assuming you are. There’s a really nice dog beach here. It is… When you have the falls, the base of the falls is the usual beach, and then kinda around the corner of a little peninsula there, there’s a dog beach. It has some rocky areas. It has some sandy areas. There’s a little bit of everything for everyone.

But before you get down to the dog beach, what really sets this park apart from a lot of them, is that there is a fenced-in pet exercise area. Or dog exercise area, I should specify. It’s completely fenced. There are some picnic tables for the dog owners to hang out. It’s forested. There are trees. There’s grass. It’s a place for your dogs to run and play and connect with other dogs. Now, of course, this is not somewhere to just drop your dog off. This is for you to be there also with your dog, engage with other dog owners, and connect with the dog-loving community.

three dogs and a man walking onto beach | Chutes Provincial Park: Video Review
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John heading to the dog beach with the dogs

Comfort Station (10:43)

John: Just a head’s up, for the comfort station. There’s only 1 comfort station. Of course, there’s a women’s and men’s side. There’s your typical stuff – obviously, I was not in the women’s one. But, there are showers. I do believe that there is a laundry area.

Britt: Yep! It’s a covered laundry area. So, if you’re dealing with bad weather, it’s actually completely enclosed and it’s a safe place to go and do your laundry while it’s raining or whatever else you might be faced with.

Big Chute Crescent (11:22)

John: Which leads us into our loop here.  

Britt: We’re in Big Chute Crescent, which is the radio-free area. It’s also a completely non-electric loop. Which is great for those of us who tent camp. I can’t get over how quiet it is here. We haven’t really heard much of anything at all the whole time we’re here. We’ve seen wardens every 2-3 hours. They’re walking past. They’re biking past. They’re past. But, they’re watching it really carefully, which is a lot to say compared to some of the other parks we’ve been to.

The best part about this area, if you’re willing to camp hydro-free… If you’re willing to completely unplug for the weekend and use solar or whatever it is that you use to give yourself power. At night, while we slept, you can hear the falls. That’s the best way to sleep. It’s like this white noise machine built-in to the site.

John: To be honest, it’s probably the best night’s sleep I have ever had at a campground. That white noise and just, you can hear a pin drop by like 6 PM.

Britt: Ya, it’s gotta be one of the quietest trips we’ve ever had.

Other Campgrounds (12:45)

John: Which leads us to the other campgrounds.

Britt: The other loops here, most of them are electric, or they are a combination of electric and non-electric. They are a little bit more open. There’s not as much privacy.

John: Not a whole lot of privacy. Something that we probably wouldn’t venture to, but…

Britt: We prefer a more rustic, woodsy, ‘get away from people’ type of camping. But if you prefer more to connect with your neighbours and be close to other people, the other campgrounds here would be a lot more your style.

Trails and A Lucifer Update (13:28)

John: You get into the trails afterward. The trails are not overly hard.

Britt: Well, there’s really only one trail here. It’s the Twin Bridges Trail. We really wanted to take it, unfortunately, for those of you who know what’s going on with little man Lucifer, and I know that we’ve mentioned it on some social media and whatnot.

We adopted Lucifer from Tennessee and when he came to us, we ended up finding out that both of his front legs have fractures right at the carpal joint, or the wrist joint. And they can’t be braced. They can’t be pinned. So, basically what we have to do is manage his pain and keep his activity level low until they break all the way through, and then we’re actually fusing those joints.

So, we’ve had to adjust what we do when we’re travelling to compensate for what he can do. One of those things is that as much as we’d love to do the trail here, the Twin Bridges Trail is too long to take him on. We’re looking at getting a pack so we can carry him, but we don’t have that yet. So, we kinda checked it out just the edges but didn’t get a chance to really take the trail.

John: From what we could see from those edges, it looks pretty groomed and fairly accessible for people of all ages.

dog looking out tent window | Chutes Provincial Park: Video Review
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Lucifer washing the squirrels from in the tent

Dog-Friendly Atmosphere (14:46)

Britt: Ya, it looks like a great trail. It looks like some great views. I really do wish we had been able to take it, but I guess that it’s an excuse for us to come visit again. I mean, even if we didn’t have that as an excuse, the big thing for us with Chutes is that it’s such a dog-friendly atmosphere. Even when I was out, I would take one of the dogs out to go for a walk and everybody’s smiling, everybody’s complimenting your dogs – the wardens, the other campers. Everyone was just so friendly about it and so dog positive.

John: With the dog parks that we’ve, or the Ontario Parks that we’ve been to as of late, they’ve all been pretty much dog friendly. But this one just takes it up a little step higher.

Britt: Now, on this trip, we didn’t bring the cats because Jinx doesn’t like longer trips, she only likes to go out for very short times. So, this was a long trip for her, to drive 5 hours and then be here for 5 days, for a cat that prefers to stay a little closer to home. I know that Pip would love it, but Jinx wasn’t on board. So, I can’t speak to how cat-friendly it is. We didn’t get to try that first-hand.

John: But there are a lot of animal lovers here, so I’m pretty sure that they would have been welcomed with open arms.

Britt: I get the impression that they would have been welcomed by everybody from Park Staff to the other campers. Everyone is just so friendly and so pet positive.

Our Rating (16:18)

John: So, in saying that, what would you give Chute?

Britt: Oh, boy! I don’t even know. You go first this time.

John: Ok. So, I would give Chutes a 4 out of 5 paws.

Britt: I think I would have to agree with you. I would give 4 out of 5 paws. I feel like I would have given 5 if the sites were more private. But, because of the fact that you can’t get that completely private site, I’d have to give it a 4 out of 5.

John: In today’s world, you would probably want to have a little Park Store or something like that. Not saying a Visitor Center or anything like that, but a Park Store where you could actually pick up some supplies. We would have probably graded it a little bit higher if it had that. But, I think it is an older park.

Britt: That being said if you haven’t been to Chutes Provincial Park… Just to see the falls is absolutely incredible. I highly recommend it. You need to go if you haven’t taken the trip.

John: Absolutely!

Britt: Onto our next adventure! So, we’re a 4 out of 5 this time. Our next trip that we’ll be reviewing is actually Wheatley Provincial Park.

John: We will be heading down there in a few weeks, so…

Britt: Wheatley is one that we know very well, that we have stayed at many, many times. We used to live down in Windsor/Essex and that was our go-to weekend park. We’re going down to visit his family this time, but we’ll still review it for you while we’re there.

John: In saying that, Happy Camping!

Britt: Happy Camping!

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