At least a one or two day visit to St. Joseph Island is a must for visitors who seek the joys of historical tourism and natural beauty. Several locations offer superb vistas of landscapes or water-related scenery. Cyclists will enjoy the Island for the chance to take either the 72 Kilometre (45 mile) Highway Circle Tour or the 45 kilometre (28 mile) Historic Tour. Those driving will enjoy the less crowded conditions of the roadways. All will enjoy the hospitality provided throughout the Island. From Algoma's Water Tower Inn & Suites, you will follow Hwy 17 East until you reach Highway 548 and the St. Joseph Island turn off. Our staff will be pleased to provide detailed maps of the area.
There are no defined mountain bike trails in this area but the interior township roads (both paved and gravel) provide very good routes for avid mountain bikers. This is an especially good way to study wildlife (particularly white tail deer) that frequent the backcountry along these less travelled routes.
Highway 548 circumnavigating the island is a roadies delight. Small river side towns, the Great Isles Shipping Channel, and rolling terrain, forested areas and farms are all part of the journey. The roads are scenic and have little traffic. Allow extra time for many arts and culture stops.
Highway 548 circles St. Joseph Island. The highway provides the visitor with scenic views of the St. Marys River as well as rolling inland areas. To visit Fort St. Joseph, follow A Line to the Fort's entrance.
There are hiking trails at Fort St. Joseph which should be explored to obtain a different perspective on the history of the park. Hiking trails have also been developed at Mountain View and can be accessed through Jocelyn Township office location. In the northwest portion of the island, a hiking trail and an observation deck have been developed at Stirbling Point.
At Fort St. Joseph visitors can walk the "ruins" of the Fort that played a crucial role in the War of 1812. Motorized carts are available for those with walking difficulties. View lake and ocean boat traffic on the St. Marys River. Both Richard's Landing and Hilton Beach waterfronts are great to explore.
The coastal waters of St. Joseph Island provide walleye, small mouth bass and northern pike fishing depending upon the shorelines. Streams flowing into the coastal waters are good for brook trout.
The north shore of St. Joseph Island provides deep water cruising opportunities. Islands can be explored near Pine Island, Campement D'Ours, Portlock and Dawson Islands. The south shore which is more exposed also provides offshore islands for exploration by kayaks.
Canoeing along the shoreline of St. Joseph Island provides an excellent opportunity to observe waterfowl in the wetland areas. The wetlands between Hay Point and Old Fort St. Joe Point are particularly fruitful.
Snowmobile routes D106 and D106A provide an enjoyable and popular day trip for many local snowmobilers. Using these routes you can circumnavigate the island. Ice routes, when available, provide connections to the mainland allowing snowmobilers to extend their trips.
My first stay at the Water Tower Inn was after a family trip across Canada. We pulled in to the brand new facility in the wee hours of the morning after 5 weeks of camping. It was heavenly!!!! So much so that it became our first and last night stop whenever we headed west. Those stays are something of a legend in my family and this July I had the chance to show my son why. I wouldn't have thought it could be better than my memories but it was. From the warm welcome at the front desk to the 2 hours we spent in the water. Thanks to the wonderful staff, facility and service the legend continues!- Dawn