Jonna Z’s Top 5 Swimming Holes
As long as I can remember my favorite summer activity has always been swimming. I was that kid that asked to take more then one session of swimming lessons during the summer, stayed in the lake for hours, and eventually worked my way into lifeguarding as a summer job.
Not only is swimming a great way to cool off during a hot summer day, it also comes with a ton of health benefits. Swimming is a way to fit cardio into your workout without putting stress on your bones, joints and muscles. If you’re lucky enough to live near the lake, opting to swim in a natural body of water could be even better for your health. Who doesn’t like to take a nice dip in the warm Gitchi Gumi, it sure gives me a boost of energy. We are so lucky to live by so many prime swimming locations, perfect for a hot summer day. Being the water bug that I am, I try to visit all of our awesome swimming sites throughout the summer. Here are my top five picks in no particular order:
# 5 The Nipigon Pool
Not only did I spent a lot of my childhood at this outdoor pool, I also spent five summers as an employee. With an awesome staff of amazing lifeguards, and lifesavers, the Nipigon Pool is my number one pick when you’re in need of a place to cool off. Lifeguards Oliva Zeleny, Eric Osala, Curt Salmon, Eric Salmon and lifesavers Caleb Mangoff, Jernie Benson, and Haley Wrigley do an awesome job at running the pool with a welcoming environment, as well as keeping everyone safe. With swimming lessons, public swim, family swim, lengths, and aqaubics, the pool has something for everyone. Follow the Nipigon swimming pool on Facebook to keep up with the hours of operation as well as their special events, for example, the annual Jr. Olympics.
I LOVED junior Olympics when I was a kid (and still do). A day where I got to do what I loved the most, with some competition tied in, and a prize for participating, can’t get much better then that! This year I even participated in some of the events (best dive and biggest splash). The judges didn’t appreciate my splash and gave me a low score (probably because it hit them and got them wet) … but I still had a blast! This year’s overall winners were Lucas Dupuis and Olivia Dupuis for the senior division, Benjamin and Tenleigh Dutil for the intermediate division, and Charlie Grant and Monica Forsyth for the junior division. The Nipigon pool is the place to be, and I highly suggest everyone take a visit this summer before it closes for the season.
#4 Lofquist Lake Public Beach
Another great place to splash around. Located a few minutes down Cameron Falls Rd (turn at the Petro) with newly constructed changerooms, and a floating dock, Lofquist is the perfect little lake to enjoy with the entire family. I remember spending hours at Lofquist as a kid, playing in the sand, jumping off the dock, and even swimming across the lake with the help from a floatie or life jacket. If you are lucky enough, you might even be able to see a school of fish hanging out under the dock.
#3 Polly Lake Public Beach
Not only is Polly warm, it is shallow and perfect for little ones! Located about 20 minutes down highway 11, Polly Lake is home to a lot of camps so you will most likely always see a familiar face.
#2 Lake Helen Public Beach
Not only is Lake Helen also warm, but the beach is also covered in soft sand. This is the perfect place to spend the day suntanning, building sand castles, and swimming. It’s also close to town. The Lake Helen beach is located right behind the water treatment plant on the Lake Helen Reserve.
#1 Black Bridge
Lastly, but certainly not least is the black bridge. For those of you who do not speak “Nipigon” and don’t know where the “black bridge” is, it is located down at the Nipigon marina, on the old CN rail line. There is a newly installed, small boardwalk right off of the black bridge that is perfect for jumping into the lagoon. I spent a lot of time swimming there as a kid, and its great to see kids still swimming there now.
We have been lucky enough to have a beautiful summer so far, with lots of opportunities to visit these prime swimming locations. My challenge to you is to try and visit each one before summer is over!
Until next time, exploring the edge.
- Jonna Z