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The Chapleau Crown Game Preserve is an animal preserve area in Ontario, Canada, north-east of Lake Superior. It is situated in the Algoma and Sudbury Districts. It is officially classified as a Crown Game Preserve by the Government of Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources.[1]

All animals are protected from hunting and trapping in the preserve since its formation in 1925. With a surface area of 7,000 square kilometers (2,700 sq mi), it is the largest game preserve in the world.[2]

The preserve is bound by the Canadian National Railway to the north, the Chapleau River to the east, the Canadian Pacific Railway to the south, and by the Algoma Central Railway to the west. It encompasses Pichogen River Provincial Park and part of Missinaibi Provincial Park, whereas the Chapleau-Nemegosenda River Provincial Park is on its eastern boundary.



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Historically the area was inhabited by Ojibwa and Cree people, where they would hunt and fish. Several sites with pictographs still testify to their past presence.

The first Europeans were probably the Coureur des bois, looking for new fur trade territory. In the 17th and 18th century, the French and English traders visited the area. With the HBC trade monopoly in Rupert's Land, the English established trading posts in Canada's interior, including Brunswick House at Missinaibi Lake. This post operated until 1917 when it was replaced by stops along the newly built railroad.[2]

By the early 20th century, both the Canadian Pacific and Canadian National Railways crossed the area and allowed easier access for prospecting, hunting, and logging. It was not long before the exploitation resulted in a depletion of wildlife. In particular, game and fur-bearing animals were over-hunted alarmingly.[2]

G.B Nicholson and William McLeod, both from Chapleau, Ontario, brought the issue to the attention of the Ontario Government and on May 27, 1925, the Chapleau Crown Game Preserve was established. All hunting and trapping was prohibited within its boundaries.[2]


Wildlife abounds in the preserve, allowing many exceptional viewing opportunities.[2] Animals present in the preserve include:


The primary access to the preserve is through the community of Chapleau, from which forest roads provide access to the preserve's interior lakes and rivers.

The existing CN and CP railroads continue to provide access to the area for logging operations with several stops in the area, such as:

  • Elsas
  • Peterbell
  • Dalton
  • Nicholson
  • Akron


  1. ^ "Natural Areas Report: CHAPLEAU CROWN GAME PRESERVE". Government of Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. Retrieved 2007-08-01.  
  2. ^ a b c d e Chapleau Regional Development Corporation, "Welcome to Chapleau - Four Seasons Guide to Northern Adventure", Chapleau, Ontario

Coordinates: 48°25′N 83°45′W / 48.417°N 83.75°W / 48.417; -83.75



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