Traveling to Canada and Interacting with Canadian Scouts
Michigan Crossroads Council packs, troops, and crews, have a unique opportunity to do Scouting in another country and meet another country’s Scouts by taking a day or weekend trip to Ontario. The information on this page will help you plan that trip.
Special Procedures when Planning a Scout Trip to Canada
Before taking a trip to Canada, a Michigan Crossroads Council pack, troop, or crew must file a TOUR AND ACTIVITY PLAN and prepare for Border Crossing Procedures and the possible need to use Health Insurance in Canada. Your first step in planning a trip to Canada should be to read the Michigan Crossroads Council’s information on TAKING BSA PACKS, TROOPS, AND CREWS TO CANADA.
Scouting in Canada
There are two Scout Associations in Canada that are members of WOSM (World Organization of the Scout Movement). The largest one and the one you will encounter in Ontario is Scouts Canada. The other WOSM member Scout Association in Canada is the French speaking Association Des Scouts du Canada with members mostly in Quebec.
Our Neighboring Scouts Canada Council
Our neighboring Scouts Canada Council across both Detroit-Windsor and Port Huron-Sarnia border crossings is the Tri-Shores Council. They welcome Michigan Crossroads Council units at their camps and activities. To learn more visit their web site..
Camporees and Other Events in Ontario
There are many regularly scheduled weekend international camporees in Ontario:
- Can-Am Camporee – Held in early May at Camp Attawandaron near Grand Bend, Ontario.
- Dorchester International Brotherhood Camporee – Held on Mothers Day weekend at Camp Bell near Dorchester, Ontario
- International Friendship Camporee – Spring Camporee near Belleville, Michigan – Fall Camporee near Amherstburg, Ontario
- Loyalist Area World Brotherhood Camporee – Held every September, in even years, in the US at Wellesley Island State Park in the Thousand Islands across from Clayton, NY, and in odd years in Canada at Riverside Cedar Provincial Park near Morrisburg, ON.
- Scope – Extended weekend exchange between Ontario Scouts and Pennsylvania Scouts
- Scout Brigade of Fort George – The third weekend in September each year at Niagara-on-the Lake, Ontario, reenacting the War of 1812. To see a 2014 BOYS LIFE magazine video about this event, link here.
- Sunset Area Winter Camp – Held every January at Harrison Park in Owen Sound, Ontario
- Tri-District – Rotated between Ontario, Quebec, and New York state
There is also a week-long international camp, The Great Lakes Jamboree, which is held every even numbered year at Camp Bel in Dorchester, near London, Ontario
Scouts Canada Camps in Ontario
There are many Scouts Canada camps in Southwestern Ontario that are ideal locations for weekend camps. For links to information about the different camps, click here. For a .pdf file containing information about all the camps, click here. For the online booking system, click here.
Camp Attawandaron is not far from the Port Huron-Sarnia bridge and very near Lake Huron. It borders Pinery Provincial Park on the western edge of the park. “Camp Attawandaron is located in the Carolinian Oak Savanna. It is one of the last true Oak Savannas in the world. The camp sits on a total of 77 hectares (190 acres). Our camp is bordered by highway 21, the Pinery, and both the Ausable River and the Ausable cut.” The camp has cabins and lodges as well as tent campsites. Possible program activities include hiking trails along the dunes, 16 canoes, a climbing wall, and snowshoes. If you link to the Pinery Provincial Park map you can see all the Lake Huron beaches which offer additional program opportunities.. Camp Attawandaron is the lighter green area just west of the park.
Many Michigan Scouts have used and recommend Camp Manitou near Campbellville, the Bruce Trail, and the Niagara Escarpment climbing areas, and Camp Wetaskiwin in St Catharines, not far from Niagara Falls.
The Niagara Escarpment west of Toronto offers outstanding opportunities for climbing and rappeling. “Some of the best climbing cliffs in Ontario are located at Conservation Halton parks that are known in climbing circles for terrific views and a wide variety of climbing levels.” Click here for information on climbing opportunities in Conservation Halton parks. Scouts Canada’s Central Escarpment Council offers a program named “On Rappel” at one of those parks, Rattlesnake Point. For “On Rappel” information, click here.
Haliburton Scout Reserve, the largest Scout camp in Canada, 5000 acres located 150 miles north of Toronto offers a unique opportunity for a different type of weeklong summer experience.
Other Camping Opportunities in Ontario
Troops and crew traveling to Ontario might also be interested in Ontario Parks, an excellent source of information on Ontario Parks which includes VR tours of Bon Echo and Killarney Provincial Parks and a downloadable canoeing map of Algonquin Provincial Park.
Scouts Canada Camps in other parts of Canada
For general information on Scout camps all across Canada, click here. For the .pdf SCOUTS CANADA CAMPS AND OUTDOOR PROGRAMS DIRECTORY, click here. For a serachable database of Scouts Canada camps, click here.