Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres, making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Canada's southern border with the United States is the world's longest bi-national land border, its capital is Ottawa, its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto and Vancouver. As a whole, Canada is sparsely populated, the majority of its land area being dominated by forest and tundra, its population is urbanized, with over 80 percent of its inhabitants concentrated in large and medium-sized cities, many near the southern border. Canada's climate varies across its vast area, ranging from arctic weather in the north, to hot summers in the southern regions, with four distinct seasons. Various indigenous peoples have inhabited what is now Canada for thousands of years prior to European colonization. Beginning in the 16th century and French expeditions explored, settled, along the Atlantic coast.
As a consequence of various armed conflicts, France ceded nearly all of its colonies in North America in 1763. In 1867, with the union of three British North American colonies through Confederation, Canada was formed as a federal dominion of four provinces; this began an accretion of provinces and territories and a process of increasing autonomy from the United Kingdom. This widening autonomy was highlighted by the Statute of Westminster of 1931 and culminated in the Canada Act of 1982, which severed the vestiges of legal dependence on the British parliament. Canada is a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy in the Westminster tradition, with Elizabeth II as its queen and a prime minister who serves as the chair of the federal cabinet and head of government; the country is a realm within the Commonwealth of Nations, a member of the Francophonie and bilingual at the federal level. It ranks among the highest in international measurements of government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic freedom, education.
It is one of the world's most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations, the product of large-scale immigration from many other countries. Canada's long and complex relationship with the United States has had a significant impact on its economy and culture. A developed country, Canada has the sixteenth-highest nominal per capita income globally as well as the twelfth-highest ranking in the Human Development Index, its advanced economy is the tenth-largest in the world, relying chiefly upon its abundant natural resources and well-developed international trade networks. Canada is part of several major international and intergovernmental institutions or groupings including the United Nations, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the G7, the Group of Ten, the G20, the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. While a variety of theories have been postulated for the etymological origins of Canada, the name is now accepted as coming from the St. Lawrence Iroquoian word kanata, meaning "village" or "settlement".
In 1535, indigenous inhabitants of the present-day Quebec City region used the word to direct French explorer Jacques Cartier to the village of Stadacona. Cartier used the word Canada to refer not only to that particular village but to the entire area subject to Donnacona. From the 16th to the early 18th century "Canada" referred to the part of New France that lay along the Saint Lawrence River. In 1791, the area became two British colonies called Upper Canada and Lower Canada collectively named the Canadas. Upon Confederation in 1867, Canada was adopted as the legal name for the new country at the London Conference, the word Dominion was conferred as the country's title. By the 1950s, the term Dominion of Canada was no longer used by the United Kingdom, which considered Canada a "Realm of the Commonwealth"; the government of Louis St. Laurent ended the practice of using'Dominion' in the Statutes of Canada in 1951. In 1982, the passage of the Canada Act, bringing the Constitution of Canada under Canadian control, referred only to Canada, that year the name of the national holiday was changed from Dominion Day to Canada Day.
The term Dominion was used to distinguish the federal government from the provinces, though after the Second World War the term federal had replaced dominion. Indigenous peoples in present-day Canada include the First Nations, Métis, the last being a mixed-blood people who originated in the mid-17th century when First Nations and Inuit people married European settlers; the term "Aboriginal" as a collective noun is a specific term of art used in some legal documents, including the Constitution Act 1982. The first inhabitants of North America are hypothesized to have migrated from Siberia by way of the Bering land bridge and arrived at least 14,000 years ago; the Paleo-Indian archeological sites at Old Crow Flats and Bluefish Caves are two of the oldest sites of human habitation in Canada. The characteristics of Canadian indigenous societies included permanent settlements, complex societal hierarchies, trading networks; some of these cultures had collapsed by the time European explorers arrived in the late 15th and early 16th centuries and have only been discovered through archeological investigations.
The indigenous population at the time of the first European settlements is estimated to have been between 200,000
Canada Flight Supplement
The Canada Flight Supplement is a joint civil/military publication and is a supplement of the Aeronautical Information Publication. It is the nation's official airport directory, it contains information on all registered Canadian and certain Atlantic aerodromes and certified airports. The CFS is published, separately in English and French, as a paper book by Nav Canada and is issued once every 56 days on the ICAO AIRAC schedule; the CFS was published by Natural Resources Canada on behalf of Transport Canada and the Department of National Defence until 15 March 2007 edition, at which time Nav Canada took over production. The CFS presents runway data and departure procedures, air traffic control and other radio frequencies and services such as fuel, hangarage that are available at each listed aerodrome; as well, the CFS contains useful reference pages, including interception instructions for civil aircraft, chart updating data and search and rescue information. Most pilots flying in Canada carry a copy of the CFS in case a weather or mechanical diversion to another airport becomes necessary.
The Canada Flight Supplement is made up of seven sections: Special Notices — list of new or amended procedures. General Section — glossary, airport code listing, list of abandoned aerodromes, other introductory information. Aerodrome/Facility Directory — list all aerodromes alphabetically by the community in which they are located. A sketch of the airport is included showing runway layout, locations of buildings and tower. Included in the sketch is an obstacle clearance circle. Planning — general flight planning information, including flight plans and position reports, lists of significant new towers and other obstructions, chart updating, preferred IFR routes, similar information. Radio Navigation and Communications — listing of radio navigation aids and communication outlets, together with all known commercial AM broadcasters and their locations and frequencies. Military Flight Data and Procedures — military flight and reporting procedures for Canada and the U. S. Emergency — emergency procedures and guidelines for hijacks, fuel dumping and rescue, etc.
Carrying "current aeronautical charts and publications covering the route of the proposed flight and any probable diversionary route" is a requirement under CAR 602.60 for night VFR, VFR Over-The-Top and instrument flight rules flights. This Canadian Aviation Regulation does not require carriage of a copy of the CFS, but, one way to satisfy the regulation; because information in the CFS may be out of date with regard to such issues as runway closures and fuel availability, pilots should check NOTAMs before each flight. NOTAM information in Canada can be obtained from the Nav Canada Aviation Weather Website or by contacting the appropriate regional Nav Canada Flight Information Centre. While Nav Canada's CFS has the monopoly on paper-version airport directories in Canada, there are several competing internet publications, including the Canadian Owners and Pilots Association's Places to Fly user-editable airport directory. Nav Canada publishes the Water Aerodrome Supplement, as a single volume in English and French.
This contains information on all Canadian water aerodromes as shown on visual flight rules charts and other information such as navaids. The WAS is published on an annual basis. Airport/Facility Directory – U. S. publications equivalent to the Aerodrome/Facility and Planning chapters of the CFS, but divided into several volumes covering different regions. Official website
Not to be confused with Canadian Transportation Agency. Transport Canada is the department within the Government of Canada responsible for developing regulations and services of transportation in Canada, it is part of the Transportation and Communities portfolio. The current Minister of Transport is Marc Garneau. Transport Canada is headquartered in Ontario; the Department of Transport was created in 1935 by the government of William Lyon Mackenzie King in recognition of the changing transportation environment in Canada at the time. It merged three departments: the former Department of Railways and Canals, the Department of Marine and Fisheries, the Civil Aviation Branch of the Department of National Defence under C. D. Howe, who would use the portfolio to rationalize the governance and provision of all forms of transportation, he created Trans-Canada Air Lines. The Department of Transport Act came into force November 2, 1936. Prior to a 1994 federal government reorganization, Transport Canada had a wide range of operational responsibilities including the Canadian Coast Guard, the Saint Lawrence Seaway and seaports, as well as Via Rail and CN Rail.
Significant cuts to Transport Canada at that time resulted in CN Rail being privatized, the coast guard being transferred to Fisheries and Oceans, the seaway and various ports and airports being transferred to local operating authorities. Transport Canada emerged from this process as a department focused on policy and regulation rather than transportation operations. In 2004, Transport Canada introduced non-passenger screening to enhance both airport and civil aviation security. Transport Canada's headquarters are located in Ottawa at Place de Ville, Tower C. Transport Canada has regional headquarters in: Vancouver – Government of Canada Building on Burrard Street and Robson Street Edmonton – Canada Place, 9700 Jasper Avenue NW Winnipeg – Macdonald Building, 344 Edmonton Street Toronto – Government of Canada Building, 4900 Yonge Street Dorval – Pierre Elliott Trudeau Airport, 700 Place Leigh-Capreol Moncton – Heritage Building, 95 Foundry Street Minister of Transport Marc GarneauDeputy Minister, Transport Canada Michael KeenanAssociate Deputy Minister, Thao Pham Assistant Deputy Minister and Security, Kevin Brousseau Associate Assistant Deputy Minister and Security, Aaron McCrombie Assistant Deputy Minister, Pierre-Marc Mongeau Associate Assistant Deputy Minister and Lead, Navigation Protection Act Review, Catherine Higgens Assistant Deputy Minister, Lawrence Hanson Assistant Deputy Minister, Corporate Services, André Lapointe Assistant Deputy Minister, Natasha Rascanin Director General, Corporate Secretariat, Tom Oommen Director General and Marketing, Dan Dugas Regional Director General, Atlantic Region, Ann Mowatt Regional Director General, Quebec Region, Albert Deschamps Regional Director General, Ontario Region, Tamara Rudge Regional Director General and Northern Region, Michele Taylor Regional Director General, Pacific Region, Robert Dick Departmental General Counsel, Henry K. Schultz Chief Audit and Evaluation Executive, Martin Rubenstein Transport Canada is responsible for enforcing several Canadian legislation, including the Aeronautics Act, Transportation of Dangerous Goods Act, Motor Vehicle Safety Act, Canada Transportation Act, Railway Safety Act, Canada Shipping Act, 2001, Marine Transportation Security Act amongst others.
Each inspector with delegated power from the Minister of Transport receives official credentials to exercise their power, as shown on the right. These inspectors are public officers identified within the Criminal Code of Canada; the Motor Vehicle Safety Act was established in 1971 in order to create safety standards for cars in Canada. The department acts as the federal government's funding partner with provincial transport ministries on jointly-funded provincial transportation infrastructure projects for new highways. TC manage a database of traffic collisions in Canada. Transport Canada's role in railways include: railway safety surface and intermodal security strategies for rail travel accessibility safety of federally regulated railway bridges safety and security of international bridges and tunnels Inspecting and testing traffic control signals, grade crossing warning systems rail operating rules regulations and services for safe transport of dangerous goods Canadian Transport Emergency Centre to assist emergency response and handling dangerous goods emergenciesFollowing allegations by shippers of service level deterioration, on April 7, 2008, the federal government of Canada launched a review of railway freight service within the country.
Transport Canada, managing the review, plans to investigate the relationships between Canadian shippers and the rail industry with regards to the two largest railroad companies in the country, Canadian Pacific Railway and Canadian National Railway. On June 26, 2013, the Fair Rail Freight Service Act became law, a response to the Rail Freight Service Review’s Final Report. Transport Canada is responsible for the waterways inside and surrounding Canada; these responsibilities include: responding and investigating marine accidents within Canadian waters enforcing marine acts and regulations establishing and enforcing marine personnel standards and pilotage Marine Safety Marine Security regulating the operation of marine vessels in Canadian watersAs of 2003 the Office of Boating Safety and the Navigable Waters Protection Program were transferred back to Transport Canada. As was certain regulatory aspects of Emergen
Sand is a granular material composed of finely divided rock and mineral particles. It is defined by size, being finer than coarser than silt. Sand can refer to a textural class of soil or soil type; the composition of sand varies, depending on the local rock sources and conditions, but the most common constituent of sand in inland continental settings and non-tropical coastal settings is silica in the form of quartz. The second most common type of sand is calcium carbonate, for example, created, over the past half billion years, by various forms of life, like coral and shellfish. For example, it is the primary form of sand apparent in areas where reefs have dominated the ecosystem for millions of years like the Caribbean. Sand is a non-renewable resource over human timescales, sand suitable for making concrete is in high demand. Desert sand, although plentiful, is not suitable for concrete, 50 billion tons of beach sand and fossil sand is needed each year for construction; the exact definition of sand varies.
The scientific Unified Soil Classification System used in engineering and geology corresponds to US Standard Sieves, defines sand as particles with a diameter of between 0.074 and 4.75 millimeters. By another definition, in terms of particle size as used by geologists, sand particles range in diameter from 0.0625 mm to 2 mm. An individual particle in this range size is termed a sand grain. Sand grains are between silt; the size specification between sand and gravel has remained constant for more than a century, but particle diameters as small as 0.02 mm were considered sand under the Albert Atterberg standard in use during the early 20th century. The grains of sand in Archimedes Sand Reckoner written around 240 BCE, were 0.02 mm in diameter. A 1953 engineering standard published by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials set the minimum sand size at 0.074 mm. A 1938 specification of the United States Department of Agriculture was 0.05 mm. Sand feels gritty when rubbed between the fingers.
Silt, by comparison, feels like flour). ISO 14688 grades sands as fine and coarse with ranges 0.063 mm to 0.2 mm to 0.63 mm to 2.0 mm. In the United States, sand is divided into five sub-categories based on size: fine sand, fine sand, medium sand, coarse sand, coarse sand; these sizes are based on the Krumbein phi scale, where size in Φ = -log2D. On this scale, for sand the value of Φ varies from −1 to +4, with the divisions between sub-categories at whole numbers; the most common constituent of sand, in inland continental settings and non-tropical coastal settings, is silica in the form of quartz, because of its chemical inertness and considerable hardness, is the most common mineral resistant to weathering. The composition of mineral sand is variable, depending on the local rock sources and conditions; the bright white sands found in tropical and subtropical coastal settings are eroded limestone and may contain coral and shell fragments in addition to other organic or organically derived fragmental material, suggesting sand formation depends on living organisms, too.
The gypsum sand dunes of the White Sands National Monument in New Mexico are famous for their bright, white color. Arkose is a sand or sandstone with considerable feldspar content, derived from weathering and erosion of a granitic rock outcrop; some sands contain magnetite, glauconite or gypsum. Sands rich in magnetite are dark to black in color, as are sands derived from volcanic basalts and obsidian. Chlorite-glauconite bearing sands are green in color, as are sands derived from basaltic lava with a high olivine content. Many sands those found extensively in Southern Europe, have iron impurities within the quartz crystals of the sand, giving a deep yellow color. Sand deposits in some areas contain garnets and other resistant minerals, including some small gemstones. Rocks erode/weather over a long period of time by water and wind, their sediments are transported downstream; these sediments continue to break apart into smaller pieces. The type of rock the sediment originated from and the intensity of the environment gives different compositions of sand.
The most common rock to form sand is Granite, where the Feldspar minerals dissolve faster than the Quartz, causing the rock to break apart into small pieces. In high energy environments rocks break apart much faster than in more calm settings. For example, Granite rocks this means more Feldspar minerals in the sand because it wouldn't have had time to dissolve; the term for sand formed by weathering is epiclastic. Sand from rivers are collected either from the river itself or its flood plain, accounts for the majority of the sand used in the construction industry; because if this, many small rivers have been depleted, causing environmental concern and economic losses to adjacent land. The rate of sand mining in such areas outweighs the rate the sand can replenish, making it a non-renewable resource. Sand dunes are a consequence of wind deposition; the Sahara Desert is dry because of its geographic location and is known for its vast sand dunes. They exist here because little vegetation is able to grow and there's not a lot of water.
Over time, wind blow
Bancroft is a town located on the York River in Hastings County in the Canadian province of Ontario. It was first settled in the 1850s by Irish immigrants. From the mid 1950s to about 1982 mining was the primary industry. A village until 1999, Bancroft merged with Dungannon Township to form the Town of Bancroft; the population at the time of the 2016 Census was 3,881. By 1823, the government had purchased nearly two million acres of land from the Chippewa and Mississaga First Nations including a tract on the York River in Hastings County, established in 1792; the area was mapped in 1835 by explorer David Thompson. The first family to build a cabin here, the Clarks in 1853, did so to take advantage of the fur trade. Early settlers included James Cleak and Alfred Barker from England who arrived in 1855, settling on Quarry Lake, they got jobs in administration. Over the years the settlement grew quickly. Lumber companies arrived to remove timber; some of the earliest settlers were United Empire Loyalists, but from 1856 to 1861, most were from Ireland, fleeing the problems caused by the Great Famine.
Most of the settlers were attracted to the area by the offer of free 100-acre parcels, advertised in Great Britain. Some of the residents sold furs, obtained through trapping; the settlement had various names over York Mills, York River and York Branch. A grist mill opened in 1865, gold was discovered in 1866 and other minerals would be discovered later; the first church and two schools were built in 1870 In 1879 the name of the settlement was changed to Bancroft by Senator Billa Flint, after the maiden name of his wife. Flint convinced tradesmen to move to the area and that helped to attract more settlers. A woolen mill began operating in 1884; the Central Ontario Railway arrived in 1900, in 1903 a second railway, the I. B. & O. built a line through here. They were beneficial in transporting goods. Bancroft was incorporated as a village in December 1904; the first telephone in the village was at the railway station. Electricity was not available until 1930. Uranium was discovered in 1949 and construction of the first mine started in 1952.
The large Madawaska Mine operated until 1982. Other minerals were mined over the years; the closing of the mine caused some economic hardship. In 1999, Bancroft merged with Dungannon Township to form the Town of Bancroft; as of the Oct 2018 Municipal election, the current Mayor is Paul Jenkins. Population trend: Population in 2016: 3881 Population in 2011: 3880 Population in 2006: 3838 Population in 2001: 4089 Population in 1996: Bancroft: 2554 Dungannon: 1526 Population in 1991: Bancroft: 2383 Dungannon: 1412Mother tongue: English as first language: 96.4% French as first language: 0.8% English and French as first language: 0.3% Other as first language: 2.5% Silent Lake Provincial Park nearby south on Highway 28 provides local camping opportunities. American sportsmen hunted on this private lake for 40 years before it became a park. Silent Lake has a rocky and undeveloped shoreline, a mixed forest and marshes full of birds and wildlife best seen by canoe. A rugged trail circles the lake, sections of groomed ski trails have been graded for mountain biking.
Algonquin Provincial Park about an hour away on Highway 62 N - Highway 127 N - Highway 60 W provides camping and hiking opportunities, beautiful forest and outdoor scenery. Portaging is quite common in this park. Algonquin offers many visitor attractions. Like Silent Lake, Algonquin has a rocky and extensive undeveloped shoreline, a mixed forest and marshes full of birds and wildlife best seen by canoe; the OFSC trails through the park provide easy winter access by snowmobile. One of the most common sights is the Canadian Moose. In 2004, Bancroft won TVOntario's "Most Talented Town in Ontario" contest. A large number of artists and artisans live in the surrounding area, exhibit together in events like the "Fall Studio Tour"; the Art Gallery of Bancroft is the area's only public not-for profit art gallery. Run by dedicated volunteers, the AGB mounts 11-12 exhibitions per year celebrating the work of local and regional artists and artisans; these exhibitions include the popular annual "Juried Show" and the annual student show displaying the work of four regional high schools.
The gallery gift shop displays the paintings and fine crafts of area artists and the AGB boasts a permanent collection including some of Ontario's finest artists. The town is home to the "Village Playhouse", a theatre, hosting sold out plays and concerts since the early 1990s; the Bancroft Community Hall, the historical building was once the local jail, court house and library. Bancroft lies at the intersection of two provincial highways, Highway 28 and Highway 62, with several other inroads allowing access to the city. Bancroft is served by the Jack Brown Airport, a Transport Canada Registered Aerodrome, with a 2,200 foot crushed gravel runway, located adjoining the town. A small airport, it was named after the man, reeve at the time and instrumental in its construction. Operated by the Bancroft Flying Club, the Jack Brown Airport is available to the general public and referred to as The Bancroft Airport. Due to high terrain near both ends of the runway, pilots use a non-standard ci
York River (Ontario)
The York River is a river in Renfrew County, Hastings County and Haliburton County in Ontario, Canada. The river is in the Saint Lawrence River drainage basin, flows from the southern extension of Algonquin Provincial Park to the Madawaska River; the river begins in the southern extension of Algonquin Provincial Park at Yorkend Lake, in geographic Clyde Township in the municipality of Dysart et al, Haliburton County. It flows west out of the park through geographic Eyre Township and Harburn Township loops back east into the southernmost part of the park in geographic Bruton Township, it takes in the left tributary North York River just before Branch Lake, turns southeast, passes over the High Falls, exits the park into Benoir Lake. It continues east into Baptiste Lake where it enters geographic Herschel Township in the municipality of Hastings Highlands, Hastings County; the river leaves the lake south at the lake's southeast tip, controlled by the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources-operated Baptiste Lake Dam, enters the town of Bancroft, passes over the Bancroft Light & Power Generating Station and dam.
The river is crossed by Ontario Highway 28 and Ontario Highway 62 in the town centre turns east and northeast. It is crossed again by Ontario Highway 28, passes over Egan Chute and Fram Chute at Egan Chutes Provincial Park, reenters Hastings Highlands at geographic Monteagle Township; the rivers continues northeast into geographic Carlow Township in the municipality of Carlow/Mayo, passes over the Conroy Rapids and enters the Conroy Marsh, a 24 km2 provincially significant wetland. As the river flows through the marsh, it first passes into the municipality of Brudenell and Raglan, Renfrew County takes in the right tributary Little Mississippi River; the river reaches its mouth as a right tributary of the Madawaska River in geographic Radcliffe Township in the municipality of Madawaska Valley, near the community of Mayhews Landing. The Madawska River flows via the Ottawa River to the Saint Lawrence River. In the second half of the 19th century, the river was used to transport logs out of the forests surrounding its watershed.
Now, parts of this river have been turned into a provincial waterway park as well as a provincial nature reserve. The river alternates between fast flowing portions in steep sided gorges to slower movement through post-glacial sand flats. In these are changes in the river course has created ox-bows and abandoned ox-bows that are now ponds and wetlands. Group of Seven artist A. J. Casson painted a number of scenes from this region, including one titled "Conroy Marsh" and several along the York River itself. Egan Chute Farm Chute High Falls, Baptiste Lake High Falls, Benoir Lake Little Mississippi River Papineau Creek Alder Creek Salmon Trout Creek Mallard Creek Bresnahan Creek Bentley Creek L'Amable Creek Clark Creek Faraday Creek Baptiste Lake McGarry Creek Hound Creek Hudson Creek Hamilton Creek Lighthouse Creek Chainy Creek Elephant Creek Benoir Lake Allen Creek Fourcorner Creek Kingscote Creek Mink Creek North York River Clyde Creek List of Ontario rivers
Ontario is one of the 13 provinces and territories of Canada and is located in east-central Canada. It is Canada's most populous province accounting for 38.3 percent of the country's population, is the second-largest province in total area. Ontario is fourth-largest jurisdiction in total area when the territories of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut are included, it is home to the nation's capital city and the nation's most populous city, Ontario's provincial capital. Ontario is bordered by the province of Manitoba to the west, Hudson Bay and James Bay to the north, Quebec to the east and northeast, to the south by the U. S. states of Minnesota, Ohio and New York. All of Ontario's 2,700 km border with the United States follows inland waterways: from the west at Lake of the Woods, eastward along the major rivers and lakes of the Great Lakes/Saint Lawrence River drainage system; these are the Rainy River, the Pigeon River, Lake Superior, the St. Marys River, Lake Huron, the St. Clair River, Lake St. Clair, the Detroit River, Lake Erie, the Niagara River, Lake Ontario and along the St. Lawrence River from Kingston, Ontario, to the Quebec boundary just east of Cornwall, Ontario.
There is only about 1 km of land border made up of portages including Height of Land Portage on the Minnesota border. Ontario is sometimes conceptually divided into Northern Ontario and Southern Ontario; the great majority of Ontario's population and arable land is in the south. In contrast, the larger, northern part of Ontario is sparsely populated with cold winters and heavy forestation; the province is named after Lake Ontario, a term thought to be derived from Ontarí:io, a Huron word meaning "great lake", or skanadario, which means "beautiful water" in the Iroquoian languages. Ontario has about 250,000 freshwater lakes; the province consists of three main geographical regions: The thinly populated Canadian Shield in the northwestern and central portions, which comprises over half the land area of Ontario. Although this area does not support agriculture, it is rich in minerals and in part covered by the Central and Midwestern Canadian Shield forests, studded with lakes and rivers. Northern Ontario is subdivided into two sub-regions: Northeastern Ontario.
The unpopulated Hudson Bay Lowlands in the extreme north and northeast swampy and sparsely forested. Southern Ontario, further sub-divided into four regions. Despite the absence of any mountainous terrain in the province, there are large areas of uplands within the Canadian Shield which traverses the province from northwest to southeast and above the Niagara Escarpment which crosses the south; the highest point is Ishpatina Ridge at 693 metres above sea level in Temagami, Northeastern Ontario. In the south, elevations of over 500 m are surpassed near Collingwood, above the Blue Mountains in the Dundalk Highlands and in hilltops near the Madawaska River in Renfrew County; the Carolinian forest zone covers most of the southwestern region of the province. The temperate and fertile Great Lakes-Saint Lawrence Valley in the south is part of the Eastern Great Lakes lowland forests ecoregion where the forest has now been replaced by agriculture and urban development. A well-known geographic feature is part of the Niagara Escarpment.
The Saint Lawrence Seaway allows navigation to and from the Atlantic Ocean as far inland as Thunder Bay in Northwestern Ontario. Northern Ontario occupies 87 percent of the surface area of the province. Point Pelee is a peninsula of Lake Erie in southwestern Ontario, the southernmost extent of Canada's mainland. Pelee Island and Middle Island in Lake Erie extend farther. All are south of 42°N – farther south than the northern border of California; the climate of Ontario varies by location. It is affected by three air sources: cold, arctic air from the north; the effects of these major air masses on temperature and precipitation depend on latitude, proximity to major bodies of water and to a small extent, terrain relief. In general, most of Ontario's climate is classified as humid continental. Ontario has three main climatic regions; the surrounding Great Lakes influence the climatic region of southern Ontario. During the fall and winter months, heat stored from the lakes is released, moderating the climate near the shores of the lakes.
This gives some parts of southern Ontario milder winters than mid-continental areas at lower latitudes. Parts of Southwestern Ontario have a moderate humid continental climate, similar to that of the inland Mid-Atlantic states and the Great Lakes portion of the Midwestern United States; the region has warm to cold winters. Annual precipitation is well distributed throughout the year. Most of this region lies in the lee of the Great Lakes. In December 2010, the snowbelt set a new record when it was h