Northern Ontario Winter Road Update – March 2 2020

Winter Road update

THUNDER BAY – Northern communities rely on the winter road network to get critical supplies into the people via transport trucks. Many people make trips out to visit friends and to get to larger centers for shopping.

Thunder Bay, Dryden, Kenora, and many other centers benefit from the shoppers traveling south to stock up on supplies.

This week only the Fort Severn Winter Road is the only one open only to light loads.

Here is the latest Winter Roads Update from Nishnawbe Aski Nation:

Thirty-four of Nishnawbe Aski Nation’s 49 member First Nations are remote, accessible only by air or seasonal roads. The winter road network. The winter road network consists of five district corridors, stretching over approximately 2,800 kilometers across NAN territory, with each corridor connecting a series of First Nations.

Ontario' Winter Roads Network
Ontario’ Winter Roads Network

In total there are 29 First Nations connected:

Corridor 1 – Pikangikum, Poplar Hill, North Spirit Lake, Deer Lake & Sandy Lake

Corridor 2 – North Caribou, Keewaywin, Koocheching, Muskrat, Sachigo, Bearskin & Cat Lake

Corridor 3 – Wunnumin, Wawakapewin, Kingfisher, Kasabonika, Wapekeka & Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (see Closure Notice)

Corridor 4 – Neskantaga, Webequie, Nibinamik, Eabametoong & Marten Falls

Corridor 5 – Attawapiskat, Fort Albany, Kashechewan & Moose Cree

Corridor 6 – Fort Severn & Weenusk

As of Friday, February 28, 2020: 

NOTICE: Please contact communities directly for travel information. Some winter roads may close temporarily over the weekend due to warm temperatures and maintenance, or be designated night travel only to maintain the integrity of the roads and ensure the roads do not get damaged.  As per communities, please do not use chains on tires except to assist if stuck.

 Road Capacity Overview – 31 Winter Road Connected Communities

 Communities Under construction:   1

Communities Open to Light: 1

Communities Open to Partial: 8

Communities Open to Full:  21 

Corridor One – Western Corridor: Pikangikum, Poplar Hill, North Spirit Lake, Deer Lake, Sandy Lake, Keewaywin (realignment and road opening anticipated this winter road season)

Under Construction:       none

Open to Light:                none

Open to Partial Loads:   Keewaywin, Deer Lake

Open to Full:                  North Spirit Lake, Pikangikum, Poplar Hill, Sandy Lake

Corridor Two – Central Corridor: North Caribou Lake, Muskrat Dam, Bearskin Lake, Sachigo Lake, Cat Lake

Under Construction:       none

Open to Light:                none

Open to Partial Loads:    Muskrat Dam, Sachigo Lake, Bearskin Lake

Full Loads:                      North Caribou Lake, Cat Lake

Corridor Three – Middle Corridor: Kingfisher Lake, Wunnumin Lake, Wawakapewin, Kasabonika Lake, Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug, Wapekaka

 Under Construction:       none

Open to Light:                none

Open to Partial Loads:    none

Open to Full Loads:        Wawakapewin, Kasabonika Lake, Wapekeka, Kingfisher Lake, Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug, Wunnumin Lake

Corridor Four – Eastern Corridor: Neskantaga, Nibinamik, Webequie, Eabametoong, Marten Falls

 Under Construction:       none

Open to Light:                none

Open to Partial Loads:   Eabametoong, Webequie

Open to Full Loads:        Neskantaga, Nibinamik, Marten Falls

Corridor Five – Far North Corridors: Moose Cree, Fort Albany, Kashechewan, Attawapiskat, Weenusk, Fort Severn

 Under Construction:       Weenusk

Open to Light:               Fort Severn

Open to Partial Loads:    none

Open to Full Loads:        Moose Cree, Fort Albany, Kashechewan, Attawapiskat

Other Winter Road Connected First Nations: Temagami, Animaki Wa Zhing #37, Northwest Angle #33

 Under Construction:       none

Open to Light:               none

Open to Partial Loads    Animakee Wa Zhing #37

Open to Full Loads:        Northwest Angle #33, Temagami

Please note this is based on time sensitive information and conditions/status could change at any moment for various reasons. This is not an official road notice and should not be used to determine whether road conditions are safe for travel. We strongly encourage all travelers to contact the First Nation for the most up to date information on the winter road status prior to traveling, including whether roads are open for travel as temporary closures do take place on the roads, even when at full load capacity.

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