Monthly Archives: March, 2016

Want to Learn About Muskoka?

March 20th, 2016 Posted by Uncategorized No Comment yet
Nestled in the heart of Ontario, less than two hours north of Toronto is the natural paradise of Muskoka: a stunning landscape of sublime waterfalls, staggering granite cliffs, wild forests of aromatic pine and iconic Canadian maple, and 1,600 pristine lakes which have led many to affectionately refer to the area as simply the Land of Lakes. The District Municipality of Muskoka, known generally as Muskoka, spans an area of 6,475 km2 (2,500 sq. mi.)—larger than the entire province of Prince Edward Island. Muskoka extends from the tip of Lake Couchiching in the south to the sublime untamed wilderness of Algonquin Provincial Park in the north; and from Haliburton County and Kawartha Lakes in the east, to the beautiful and rugged Georgian Bay in the west.

The District Municipality of Muskoka contains six municipalities: Bracebridge, Gravenhurst, Huntsville, and the townships of Georgian Bay, Lake of Bays (Dorset), and Muskoka Lakes (Port Carling, Bala); as well as Moose Point 79 (Moose Deer Point First Nation) and the Wahta Mohawk Territory. Its natural beauty is interspersed with historic villages and townships, scenic farming communities, lakeside resorts, beautiful marinas, and lush golf courses and country clubs. Muskoka is home to 60,000 permanent residents, as well as nearly 100,000 seasonal property owners, who also proudly consider themselves Muskokans—and rightfully so, when one considers that many family cottages were built during the original settlement of Muskoka. The pride they uphold is reflected in the upkeep of seasonal Muskokan properties, which are notoriously well maintained—and this is doubly true for those established long ago. Many Muskoka cottages have passed through eight generations, and are still maintained in picture perfect condition.

With a year-round population of 19, 056, Huntsville is the largest urban centre in Muskoka, followed by Bracebridge, which houses the regional government seat. However, the heart of the Muskoka, the quintessence of Ontario’s cottage country, is the Township of Muskoka Lakes. With a year-round population of only 6,707, the Township of Muskoka Lakes is home to almost 32,000 seasonal residents and contains some of the most desirable seasonal real estate in the area, including Lake Muskoka, Lake Joseph, and Lake Rosseau; three intricate, interconnected bodies of crystal clear lake water, with a maximum measured depth of 93.8 metres (Lake Joseph). As the grandest lakes in the area, these were the first explored, and the first to accommodate an array of settlers and tourists, as well as sportsmen looking for some of the best freshwater fishing available.

Many permanent residents were once seasonal property owners, who, after being drawn to the tranquility and sublime beauty of Muskoka, found it simply too hard to leave, and chose instead to establish year-round homes. Many newer permanent residents of Muskoka are active retirees; previous cottagers who chose to sell their homes elsewhere and move to Muskoka full-time rather than have to endure the pain of leaving at the end of cottage season. And who could blame them? Muskoka combines the rugged untamed beauty of the Canadian Shield, some of the cleanest and most beautiful lakes in the world, and all the amenities anyone could ever need. Whether you are interested in buying a cottage in Muskoka, or making a more permanent move; with so much to offer, is there really anywhere else you would rather be?

Sources: Travel to Muskoka & Our Own Knowledge

Are you considering selling your Muskoka cottage?

March 18th, 2016 Posted by Uncategorized No Comment yet
So you are considering selling your cottage. Here at The Hunt Team, we understand that this can be an emotional decision to make, and we’re here to help. If you have decided that it’s the right time to move on and have chosen to sell, there are a few things you must consider. First you should meet with a Muskoka real estate agent and discuss listing your property. A local REALTOR can help provide a wealth of knowledge regarding market trends, appropriate pricing strategy, presentation, and marketing to help your cottage gain the exposure necessary to ensure a successful sale. With a thorough understanding and years of experience working in the local cottage market, the value that a Muskoka realtor can bring to the table when selling your cottage is not something to be overlooked. If you are interested in selling your cottage, and would like some advice, or you would like to arrange a meeting, please don’t hesitate to contact us by Clicking Here. Once you have met with your real estate agent, developed a sales strategy, and determined an appropriate asking price, it’s time for the real work to begin.

Maybe you bought your cottage a decade ago, or maybe it’s been in your family for generations. Either way, chances are that it has come to feel like a home to you. While this is exactly what one wants from their cottage, it can make it easier to ignore things when preparing to sell it. For instance, you may have become used to the little areas of your cottage that require some attention—that piece of wood missing from the deck, the stain on the living room carpet, the weeds threatening to take over your garden, or that cracked bathroom tile. While for you, these imperfections may add a rustic feel to the place—they add character!—it is doubtful that a potential buyer will share your feelings. When preparing your cottage for sale, it is important to look at things as objectively as possible. Imagine you are surveying the area for the first time, as if you are considering the purchase yourself. What do you notice? If your eyes are drawn to little problems, like those mentioned above, they should be the first things repaired. It does not need to take a long time, or cost a lot of money, but a few minor repairs can go a long way in getting your cottage the attention it deserves, and fetching the highest price possible. Consider repainting anywhere the paint has begun to chip or fade; fixing leaky faucets; repairing loose of broken tiles, patching any holes in walls, repairing doors and drawers that don’t close properly, and so on. The same goes for the property outside the cottage. Re-stain wooden decks, clear pathways, pull the weeds from your garden, replace loose flagstones, mow the lawn, and trim the trees to clear the view of the water. When preparing to sell, you want to put your best cottage forward, and every little thing helps.

This brings us to a final point: things. We all have them, a lot of them end up at the cottage, and a great deal of them are often sold with the cottage. A few personal items, tastefully displayed, can lend a warm lived-in feel to a cottage. Too many, and the place begins to look like a storage locker that’s been lived-out-of. So it’s time for some triage. If it adds to the appearance and feel of the cottage, like a rustic wooden rocking chair and an antique map of Muskoka, present it along with the cottage. If it takes away from the feel of the cottage, like an antique television set circa 1980 and replete with bunny ear antennae, get rid of it. The same goes for outdoors. Clean the area around the cottage and waterfront, and discard any unsightly items you may not have gotten around to clearing out beforehand. Buyers want to see a cottage in its natural setting; not a messy lot in need of overhaul. You should determine which items you would like to keep and pack them away before showings. This will help de-clutter the cottage and keep your prized possessions away from the prying eyes of potential buyers. You should also consider which items you intend to sell with the cottage and display them as tastefully as possible. Finally, collect what is left over and get rid of it. Whether you hold a yard sale or give it away; it is important to ensure that nothing is left in your cottage that takes away from its perceived potential for buyers. Again, try to see things as they would, arrange things accordingly, and put your best cottage forward!

Have you ever thought about The Muskoka Life?

March 16th, 2016 Posted by Uncategorized No Comment yet

Imagine waking early to watch the first rays of sunlight break over the horizon, warming the still waters of the lake; pushing off in your canoe through the glowing, billowy mists for a quick paddle in the first light of day. You have your rod and tackle box, the smallmouth bass are hungry, and there’s plenty of time for a few casts in the bay before you need to head back and start frying pancakes for the kids. Imagine them racing to the beach screaming, “Last one in is a rotten egg!”; teaching them to swim, paddle, and water ski in the clear Muskokan waters. Imagine flinging your moody teenager off the raft after a triumphant wrestling match; you haven’t seen him laugh like that in years. Imagine inviting the whole clan up for a long summer weekend: tours out on the lake; sunsets on the dock with a cold beer in hand; roasted marshmallows on the campfire. Your brother-in-law has had a bit too much to drink and you’ve just taken some embarrassing pictures of him that are sure to be a talking point of the next day when you tell him that they’ll become a central part of the cottage photo album. Imagine walking hand-in-hand along the coastline with the person you love most: you stop, you look into each others’ eyes, you kiss for what feels like the first time, and you can’t remember ever feeling more in love.

If you have ever found yourself daydreaming in this way, you are not alone. Buying a cottage in Muskoka is a dream that many people have, and here at The Hunt Team we want to help you realize your dream. More than that, we want to help you find perfect cottage for you so that when you sign the deed, your dream comes true.

The perfect cottage is hard to come by, and what might be ideal for one person, is not so for another. When looking to buy a cottage, it is important to consider how you aim to use it. Will this be a family cottage? Will it be a quiet lover’s getaway for you and a significant other? Is it going to be a summer escape for you, your close friends, and extended family? Or is it somewhere you plan to retire? Considering these questions will help you determine which cottage is the right one for you.

The most important part of finding the perfect cottage is how it feels to you. When you are looking at cottages, go down to the waterfront, survey the land, wade into the water; see it not only as it is now, but try to imagine it as it could be. See which direction it faces; will you have a clear view of the morning sunrise or the evening sunset? Spend time there and remember how you have dreamed of buying a cottage. Picture yourself there with your family, imagine all the things you wish to do there with all the people you care about, and ask yourself: does this feel like it did in my dreams?

The Evolution of Muskoka

March 14th, 2016 Posted by Uncategorized No Comment yet
From humble beginnings, Muskoka has evolved into a diverse and thriving vacation destination, small business centre, and early retirement community in the heart of Ontario’s cottage country. As beautiful as ever, Muskoka has become a welcome escape for naturalists, adventurers, sportsmen, golfers, boaters, and any outdoor enthusiast looking to get away from the pressures of city life. Muskoka’s well established recreation and tourism industry continues to expand, and plans are underway to develop the area into the Golf Capital of Ontario.

In addition to the numerous events available during Muskoka’s summer vacation and cottage season, Muskoka Tourism and the local Chamber of Commerce, are expanding horizons and evolving Muskoka into an area of year-round recreation, with activities including cross country skiing, snowmobiling, and dog sledding; all in one of the most naturally beautiful settings in the world.  On top of that, Muskoka offers an endless array of music and arts festivals throughout the area all year long; and just a short 20-minute drive south of Muskoka is the renowned Casino Rama that features first class gaming, as well as spectacular concerts featuring world famous musicians. If instead you would prefer to slow things down and connect with the natural world free from distractions, Algonquin Provincial Park lies just north of Muskoka, in all its unspoiled, rugged beauty.

Muskoka has a long history of tourism, stretching back to the days of steam-powered navigation. With an influx of tourists travelling to Muskoka on steamships operated by the Muskoka Navigation Company; such as the Segwun, the Wenonah, and the Sagamo; local residents recognized the business potential in providing tourist accomodations. Around this time lavish hotels and resorts, such as the Royal Muskoka, Elgin House, and Bigwin Inn were being established in the area. One such resort, Windermere House, established in 1870 and rebuilt in 1997 after a devastating fire, is still in operation today; and is one of the most popular vacation resorts and wedding destinations in Ontario.

Many historic figures spent their summers in Muskoka, including Orville Wright, U.S. President Woodrow Wilson, Canadian Prime Minister Sir Robert Borden, and Lord and Lady Eaton who built a majestic estate which has since been converted into an exclusive private school, now known as Rosseau College. In fact, Lady Eaton’s historic steamship, The Wanda III, built in 1915, has been restored and used for private cruises of the Muskoka lakes. In addition, the RMS Segwun, built in 1887 as a mail and passenger ship, has also been lovingly restored and allows passengers to witness the majesty of Muskoka from the water, offering a unique and breathtaking experience. There is no better place to buy a cottage than in Muskoka.

With so much to do year-round, and so much more being developed, it comes as no surprise that many early retirees are choosing to move to Muskoka and unburden themselves of the demands of city living, or that many seasonal property owners are choosing to winterize their cottages in order to take advantage of the unique events and stunning beauty of Muskoka all year long. For, as Muskoka’s permanent residents already know, life in Muskoka does not exist only during the peak summer season, but through all seasons: all breathtaking, all unique, and all begging to be experienced to the fullest.

Muskoka Event Guide 2016

March 7th, 2016 Posted by Uncategorized No Comment yet
Muskoka Maple Trail
March 14 – April 23, 2016
Open for Maple Season, syrup producers from across Muskoka invite you to tour the sugarbush to see the magic happen for yourselves.
Details available at

Muskoka Maple Festival
April 23, 2016

Wrapping up Maple Season in style! Hosted in downtown Huntsville, you can enjoy an all day pancake breakfast, chainsaw carving, live fiddling music, and lots more fun for the entire family.
Details available at

Home & Cottage Show
April 22-24, 2016
Hosted by the Muskoka Builders’ Association at the Gravenhurst Centennial Centre, 2016 will mark the show’s 25th anniversary.
Details available at

Band on the Run
June 11, 2016

A morning run (half marathon, 10 km, 5 km, and children’s run) followed by a live outdoor music festival headlined by The Jim Cuddy Band.
Details available at

Canada Day Fireworks
July 1, 2016
Hosted by the Town of Bracebridge, events run all day and feature Watercross and Cardboard Boat Races.
Details available at

Vintage Boat Show
July 9, 2016
Hosted by the Antique and Classic Boat Society-Toronto at Muskoka Wharf, Gravenhurst, and featuring over 100 antique and classic boats, a vintage car display, fashion show, youth activities, and more…
Details available at

Muskoka In-Water Boat & Cottage Show together with Muskoka Ribfest
July 22-24, 2016
Held at Muskoka Wharf, Gravenhurst, these combined events offer over 100 boat and cottage displays, prizes and giveaways, and mouth-watering ribs! Vegetarians are also welcome.
Details available at

Session Muskoka Craft Beer Festival
July 30, 2016

Held in the Bracebridge, this festival includes live music, gourmet food, and of course plenty of good beer.
Details available at

Dockside Festival of the Arts
August 19-21, 2016

Come to Gravenhurst Wharf to enjoy the work of over 100 artisans and craftspeople, along with gourmet food, craft beer, helicopter rides, and more…
Details available at

Muskoka Autumn Studio Tour
September 24-25 & October 1-2, 2016
Featuring numerous artists, this tour allows patrons the opportunity to witness the magic of artistic creation firsthand.
Details available at

Bala Cranberry Festival
October 14-16, 2016
The Bala Cranberry Festival offers something for everyone, with snowmobile watercross, cranberry marsh tour, live music, and tons of great food. Oh yeah, and cranberries.
Details available at

Santa Claus Parade
December 4, 2016
Held in downtown Bracebridge, the Santa Claus Parade gives children a chance to see Santa himself. If that weren`t enough, the parade will also feature numerous exciting floats, prizes, and lots of hot chocolate.