The area was first settled and founded in 1869 by George Hunt, who built a small agricultural centre there. In 1870, a post office was built and the area was named Huntsville after Hunt, who became the first postmaster. Huntsville's economic development was stimulated by the engineering of a navigable water route north from Port Sydney to Huntsville which opened in 1877. A railway route from Gravenhurst was built by the Northern and Pacific Junction Railway in 1885, which encouraged development and resulted in Huntsville becoming officially incorporated in 1886.
In the following year, the Muskoka Colonization Road reached this area. The central Ontario community became an important industrial area in the late 19th century and had several saw, planing and shingle mills, as well as a tannery. Today, the many lakes and hills in the area, combined with the town's proximity to both Algonquin Park and Toronto, make Huntsville and the Muskoka region a major tourist destination.
Kayaking is a wildly popular paddlesport. Paddlesports offer people unique ways to enjoy nature while getting up close and personal with expansive waterways. Kayaking is remarkably accessible for people of all skill levels and interests. Kayaking has seen a consistent upward trend in participation for the last five years. Today, recreational kayaking is the most popular paddlesport and the activity is almost evenly split among men and women. Many kayakers can enter the water with relatively no instruction in kayaking and take to the sport like a duck to water. Of course, the right gear can make all the difference for both experienced and novice kayakers. Anyone who plans to be a consistent kayaker should probably invest in a kayak of his or her own. The right kayak depends on where kayakers plan to use it. Sea kayaks can sail easily through choppy conditions. Tandem kayaks carry two or more people and have more storage space. Touring kayaks are designed for long distance kayakers. Sit-on-top kayaks are ideal for beginners and casual paddlers.
Kayaking, canoeing and boating has become much more popular over the past year. A trip to Algonquin Outfitters will help you kit yourself out for a great day on the water! Check out their website at www.algonquinoutfitters.com