Posted by Derek on Jun 13, 2010
Height: 1654 feet / 504 meters
GPS recorded height: 1650 feet / 503 meters
Lat/Lon: N46 51.759 W80 39.669
Date Summited: May 22, 2010
Wolf Lake Mountain is located just outside the boundaries of the world’s largest old-growth red pine forest; the Wolf Lake forest reserve. Named after the lake it stands over, Wolf Lake Mountain is the highest point within the boundaries of the City of Greater Sudbury. The area, commonly referred to as Chiniguichi, is a relatively popular canoeing destination with it’s clear acidified lakes, old growth pine forests and aboriginal pictographs.
From Sudbury, proceed east on Highway 17 for approximately 20 km and pass through the communities of Conniston, Wanapitai and Stinson. Just past Stinson, turn left (north) onto Kukagami (Lake) Road and follow it for 21.3 km until reaching a fork where Matagamasi Lake Road branches to the left. Follow Matagamasi Lake Road for 4.6 km and then continue on Bushy Bay Road which forks to the left. Continue past the cluster of cottages/camps which dot the sliver of land between Lakes Wanapitei and Matagamasi. Shortly past the cottages, at N46 45.785 W80 38.409, a rugged hill with loose boulders must be ascended. Those with cars may wish to park on the shoulder here and continue on bike/foot.
Follow the main road northward, past scenic lakes and across small creeks for 11.4 km until reaching and large open intersection marked with a Nickel Belt Snow Spriits Snowmobile Club sign. Turn left here at the fork. The road begins the 2.8 km ascent which has a few steep stretches until reaching the lookout of Wolf Lake Mountain.
The actual summit lies north of the lookout. Continue for 0.3 km along the road and then head west (left) into the woods for a brief 200 meter bushwhack. The brush is fairly open and it is easiest to skirt the southern edge of the hill until making the final push north onto the summit.
Having first spotted this peak on the Ontario County High Points list on peakbagger.com, I decided it would make a nice day hike from Sudbury where I was visiting family for the long weekend. Usually the May 24 long weekend is off limits for most sane hikers in Northern Ontario due to the abundance of black flies and mosquitoes. This year however, spring had come early and without the usual amount of rainfall, so I figured that I could risk the conditions for a day trip to Sudbury City’s highest point.
Driving northwards, I correctly made the left turn onto Matagamasi Lake Road but shortly afterwards, missed the turnoff onto Bushy Bay Road. Reaching the boat launch at the end of Matagamasi Road, I realized I had made a mistake and backtracked to take the left fork onto Bush Bay Road. Just beyond the fork, I passed a group of cottages which take strategic advantage of the land narrows which divides Matagamasi Lake from Wanapitei Lake.Arriving at the base of a steep hill strewn with small boulders, I decided I could drive no further. I parked at At N46 45.785 W80 38.409, and prepared to continue my way on bike. As I suited up the mosquitoes were swarming, but strangely, this was the the worst of them I would see, and I didn’t have any trouble from them for the rest of the trip.
I made good progress biking along the road until I hit my first obstacle. Some beavers must have dammed up a nearby creek, which flooded the road. In an effort to avoid the swampy areas on either side of the road, I decided to pedal right through the flood zone. The ‘lake’ was deeper than I had hoped and as I pedaled my lower foot plunged into the water. I would have wet feet for the remainder of the day.
Despite pedaling across a flooded road, the water levels in many of the lakes and marshes in the area looked to be significantly low. Along the route I passed by a marsh which had been become a mud flat.
After an hour of biking, I reached an intersection marked by a Nickel Belt Snow Spririts Snowmobile Club sign. The sign marked the turnoff left (west) from the main road onto a slightly smaller road. A further 700 meters past the intersection, the road began to ascend steeply, so I decided to stash my bike in the woods and continued the remainder of the journey on foot. Only minutes into my trek by foot, I encountered something I had not seen before. In an effort to combat erosion, concrete 2-tracks had been poured for the quads and 4x4s to drive along on their ascent up Wolf Lake Mt.
It took me about 40 minutes to ascend the remaining 600 feet (over 2.1 km) to reach my first objective, the lookout on Wolf Lake Mountain. The area is popular with offroaders, and as I neared the top of the hill, I was passed by a small group of ATV’ers on their way off the mountain.
The early day haze was lifting and the lookout afforded good views east towards the Chiniguichi region. Silvester Lake and Matagamasi Lake were visible to the southeast, Wolf and Dewdney Lakes were visible to the east and northeast partially obscured by a low lying ridge.
As the open forest allowed easy passage, I explored the area to the north and passed through wild blueberry pastures which afforded nice views of the hills to the west. As it was time to start heading back, I retraced my steps back down the mountain. I stopped back at the lookout and took a short side trail to visit a tower which I had seen from the summit.
The day was really heating up, and with temperatures reaching the high 20s I had to stop a few times just to cool down and renew my water supplies by filtering creek water. Arriving back at the car just before 2:00 PM, I completed the 14.7 km x 2 (29.4 km) biking/hiking portion of the trip to and from Wolf Lake Mountain in just under 5 hours.
00.0 km – Turnoff from Highway 17 onto Kukagami Lake Road
21.3 km – Turn left at fork onto Matagamasi Lake Road
25.9 km – Turn left at fork onto Bushy Bay Road
32.3 km – Road gets rough. Park here on the road shoulder if traveling by car. Continue on by bike or by foot.
43.7 km – Turn left at the Nickel Belt Snow Spriits signed intersection
44.4 km – Road becomes steeper as it begins to ascend the hill. Good time to stash the bike.
46.5 km – Wolf Lake Mountain Lookout and short trail to the tower
46.8 km – Start of short bushwhack to the highest point on Wolf Lake Mountain (turn left off of road)
47.0 km – Wolf Lake Mountain summit.
Save Wolf Lake
Sudbury City High Point
Chiniguchi Middle Tracks
Wolf Lake’s old-growth red pine
Wolf Mountain Geocache
Simplyred4x4′s Wolf Mountain Videos: The Ride Up, Lookout, The Ride Down, Flooded Road