Our Story

Our Story

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Vision & Values

Wilderness Discovery encourages and maintains the principles of independence, dignity, integration, and equal opportunity for all individuals. We strive to create a unique camping experience that affords all of our guests a "Life Without Barriers".

To provide a fully accessible family resort. To promote a safe, barrier free, and fun camping experience that everyone can enjoy. To engage the community in a way that fosters these values.

Bob Hookham

A Message From Our President

"As able bodied people we take many things for granted; Fishing, swimming, having a bonfire, or even just a BBQ. This facility will allow anyone with any kind of disability the ability to do all those things every day of their stay. We will have a special pontoon boat designed with wheelchair access so that anyone can go for a lake cruise or fishing. There will be a lift to lower individuals into the lake for a swim or a boat ride in a fishing boat. Every camper can navigate the camp using the ramp system from their cottage or the main lodge all the way down to the beach & bonfire area to enjoy the simple pleasures. This will afford all of our guests a 'Life Without Limits'."

Thank you for joining us.

Our History


Land was deeded by the Carson and Cross families to the YM-YWCA to be used as a summer camp for youth.

Early 1980’s

Handicapped Action Group Inc. (HAGI) had a dream of expanding this camp into a facility that would allow disabled persons with disabilities and their families to enjoy life at the lake.

August 1, 1983

HAGI entered into a 20-year lease to develop the current HAGI camp.


Lease amended, expired in 2013 and continued with yearly extensions until the fall of 2015.

July 2015

Bob Hookham of the Fort William Rotary & Jeff Jones of the Hill City Kinsmen meet with Minister Bill Mauro to discuss the possibility of assisting HAGI to maintain the operation of this facility at Lake Shebandowan.

April 2015

HAGI announced that they would be forced to stop operating the facility unless there was a significant change in the financial picture with respect to the facility.

February 10, 2017

Negotiations culminated in a Press Release where Minister Bill Mauro announced a deal in principle with this new management group.

April 7, 2017

Wilderness Discovery received its Letters Patent as a Non-Profit Corporation with representatives on its Board of Directors from the Thunder Bay Rotary Clubs, Hill City Kinsmen, HAGI, Westfort Kiwanis and the Shebandowan Lake Campers' Association.

July 2017

The Corporation and the Ministries signed an Agreement of Purchase and Sale for the Lake Shebandowan Property.

August 11, 2017

Wilderness Discovery Centre officialy took possession of the Lake Shebandowan facility that was previously operated by HAGI.

Experience the wilderness

Discover Ontario's number one mobility accessible, barrier-free facility

PO Box 10532 | P7B 6T9 | Thunder Bay, Ontario | 807-346-9722