Basin Depot

Basin Depot

Basin Cabin, the oldest building in Algonquin Provincial Park.

Ten Acres Cleared

The Basin – as it was also known then – was the most important logging depot on the Little Bonnechere River and the Old Bonnechere Road. Over a span of more than 100 years, successive companies built shanties, blacksmith shops, stables and storehouses on this site. As early as 1852, several roads radiated from here to logging camps on the Madawaska River, the Petawawa and the Barron.

By 1890 Basin Depot boasted a post office, a company boarding house, a blacksmith shop, outbuildings, and “ten acres cleared…partially under crops (potatoes).” In 1892 a small office was constructed. This is the squared log structure which still stands today in the clearing east of Basin Creek. The oldest building in Algonquin Park, it has also served as a harness shop, school house, and in darker times, a hospital. Several of the former residents of Basin – victims of black diphtheria and drowning – lie nearby in two fenced graveyards with wooden crosses marking their final resting places.

Across the road from the Basin cabin is another clearing where W.K. Gunn Limited built a camp of eighteen buildings in 1949. Later, it was operated by the Whitmore Lumber Company and then Shoosplin Woods Limited which eventually ceased operations in 1960. A root cellar and a concrete garage foundation are all that remain.

Post-1914, when Basin Depot became part of Algonquin Park, a park ranger cabin and a fire ranger cabin were built on the northeast side of the road. It must have been a lonely existence, especially in winter.

Browse Basin Depot Artifacts Recovered in 1999-2000 >

Browse More Basin Depot Artifacts Recovered in 2000 >

Each August, the Friends of Bonnechere Parks host evening wolf howls. Photo: Mike Runtz

Wolf Country

Biologists have conducted intensive studies of the movements, pack dynamics, social structure and genetics of wolves in the Basin Depot area. Winter studies have, for example, shown that wolves from this area follow white-tailed deer out of Algonquin Park towards Round Lake and points south and east, where the snows are less deep.

DNA analysis has also determined these wolves to be a different strain than originally thought. No longer are they considered a subspecies of the timber wolf that ranges across northern North America. They are instead more closely related to the red wolf – a species found in the southern United States. Thus the newly named eastern wolf – the Algonquin wolf – is now listed as a species of concern, worthy of special management.

Each August, the Friends of Bonnechere Parks host evening wolf howls that bring hundreds of people in close contact with the Basin Depot packs.


  • remains of historic logging depot village
  • historic cabin
  • gravesites
  • logging camp footings
  • recovering forest
  • Basin Creek
21.3 km from Cty Rd 58. Trailhead near historic cabin at Basin Depot off Basin Road.

Rating: Easy

Type: Walk-about

Distance: .8 km

Time: 30 to 45 minutes

Surface: Road and grass field trails

UTM: 18T 282947 E 5066794 N

Our Nature | Our Culture

4024 Round Lake Road

Killaloe Ontario K0J 2A0

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