Community Development Corporation of Sault Ste. Marie & Area

Montreal River

General Information

  • Location - Highway 17 North
  • Population in 1994 - 11
  • Access - Land


The community of Montreal River is found primarily in Rix and a small portion of Slater Townships. The Montreal River area used to be known as “Trails End”. Here was the end of the road that extended north from Sault Ste. Marie. People who wanted to venture further north along the coastline of Lake Superior were required to take a boat or float aircraft. It wasn’t until 1960 that the highway “gap” between Montreal River was completed allowing motor vehicle travellers to take Highway 17 north as part of the Trans Canada Highway or to the Lake Superior Provincial Park campgrounds and lodges along the shoreline.

The Montreal River townsite development occurred in conjunction with the construction of the Montreal River hydro electric power facilities by Great Lakes Power Ltd. With tourism travel, lodges were built including Twilight Resort and Trails End Resort (now Mad Moose Lodge). Northgate Service Centre and Restaurant serves as an oasis in the winter when winter travel is difficult and as supply centre for travellers and campers at nearby Lake Superior Provincial Park in the summer.

Opposite the Northgate Service Centre is an abandoned raised cobble beach created at the time of Glacial Lake Minong which existed at approximately 9,500 years before present. This raised beach site has been protected as a Nature Reserve under the Provincial Parks Act.

Lake Superior Provincial Park was established in 1944 to protect a significant portion of Lake Superior’s rugged northern shoreline. A visit to Lake Superior Provincial Park is a visit to one of the acknowledged “jewels” in the Provincial Park system. Its rugged coast and variety of trails makes this park a destination for hikers, canoeists and sea kayakers, as well as for campers and sightseers.