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Haliburton Highlands

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Title: Haliburton Highlands  
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Subject: Norland, Ontario, Haliburton Forest, Lake retention time, Kennisis Lake, Ontario Highway 35
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Haliburton Highlands

Haliburton County

Coordinates: 45°05′N 78°30′W / 45.083°N 78.500°W / 45.083; -78.500Coordinates: 45°05′N 78°30′W / 45.083°N 78.500°W / 45.083; -78.500

Country  Canada
Province  Ontario
Region Central Ontario
County seat Minden
 • Land 4,071.86 km2 (1,572.15 sq mi)
Population (2011)[1]
 • Total 17,026
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)

Haliburton is a county of Ontario, Canada, known as a tourist and cottage area in Central Ontario for its scenery and for its resident artists. Minden Hills is the county seat. Haliburton County was established in 1983, but had existed as the Provisional County of Haliburton since 1874. Haliburton County and the village of Haliburton are named after Thomas Chandler Haliburton, author, statesman, and the first chairman of the Canadian Land and Emigration Company.

The county borders Algonquin Park on the north.


Communities in the county include Haliburton, Minden, Wilberforce, Gooderham, Irondale, Cardiff, West Guilford, Eagle Lake and Fort Irwin.


Haliburton County is dubbed the "Haliburton Highlands". This is in part attributed to its similarity to the Scottish Highlands, and the Scottish ancestry of the founding population. The Haliburton Highlands region is also one of the higher points on the Canadian Shield,[2] ranging from 1,066 feet (325 m) at the Haliburton/Stanhope Municipal Airport[3] to 1,450 feet (440 m) above sea level at Sir Sam's Ski Resort in Eagle Lake.[4]


Haliburton County is spotted with many rivers and lakes, included endorheic lakes fueled by natural springs. Some of the major lakes are as follows:


Historic populations:[6]

  • Population in 2001: 15,085
  • Population in 1996: 15,321


Haliburton County's economy is dominated by tourism, due to the region's many rivers and lakes. The ratio of properties occupied in the summer months, to properties occupied year-round is about 3 to 1.[1] Employment primarily caters to the needs of this seasonal cottage country population, including residential construction, resorts, services and retail.[7]

The creative economy is alive and well in Haliburton. The Haliburton County Development Corporation (HCDC) is currently working on a project called Innovative Haliburton to bring attention to the creative economy in Haliburton, as well as, partnering with Haliburton County Economic Development to advance the creative economy in eastern Ontario. In 2009, HCDC formed a creative economy committee to look at ways to: encourage innovative people who already have an attachment to the area to move and run their business here, support new and existing businesses in the county that work in the creative economy, showcase local businesses that are successfully engaged in the creative economy, support our local governments to engage in planning that will help attract new businesses. In 2013, The Creative Economy Committee's name was changed to the Economic Innovations Committee to better describe the roles of the committee as a seed organization, helping the county to prosper through innovation and enabling the youth of the county to better understand the opportunities that are being created in the new economy.[8]

The county is serviced by two hospitals, one in Haliburton and one in Minden. Both are administrated by Haliburton Highlands Health Services.


Haliburton County is part of the Trillium Lakelands District School Board.


Minden Hills

  • Archie Stouffer Elementary School - Grades K-8

Dysart et al.

  • Stuart W. Baker Elementary School - French Immersion, Grades K-3
  • J. Douglas Hodgson Elementary School - Grades 4-8

Highlands East

  • Cardiff Elementary School - Grades K-3
  • Wilberforce Elementary School - Grades 4-8


  • Haliburton Highlands Secondary School - Grades 9-12


Adult Education

Private Education

  • Tall Oaks Christian Academy - Grades K-8
  • Haliburton Language School - English as a Second Language and other languages
  • St. Peter's ACHS College School - Boys' Catholic Elementary School

Arts and culture

The Haliburton Highlands is home to a thriving arts community. The county is dotted by galleries, both public and private, offering events, programs and workshops to the public. Artists’ studios can be found in almost every community, many offering public demonstrations, small galleries, and classes. There are murals and public sculptures in the downtowns of most communities, as well as in park settings. The county is home to the renowned Haliburton Sculpture Forest, a unique outdoor collection of sculptures by Canadian and international artists.

The Highlands are also home to the renowned Haliburton Highlands Museum.

Heritage is also a focus in the county, with established museums in Carnarvon, Dorset, Haliburton, Minden, and Wilberforce, as well as many fledgling museums emerging in some of the smaller communities. Many buildings throughout the county are designated heritage sites by the province, and many others undergoing preservation through the interests of the public.

The performing arts also receive much attention. Haliburton Highlands Secondary School has strong drama and music programs, showcasing their talents throughout the year to the public. As well, the Highlands Summer Festival presents a wide array of theatre offerings throughout the summer, showcasing the talents of local and seasonally local actors and musicians. Numerous indie bands perform throughout the county, with open mic events being held at a number of establishments.

Haliburton is also home to the Creative Business Incubator. The incubator provides entrepreneurs with a flexible, affordable space; ready access to business support assistance and coaching, broadband service and an environment conducive to entrepreneurial growth.[9] The incubator is a project of the Haliburton County Development Corporation.[10]

Notable people

In popular culture

Forest fire protection history

The former Dysart fire tower was erected in 1956 on a hill by the east side of Haliburton village just off Highway 118. Its 100-foot (30 m) frame still stands, but the towerman's cupola has since been removed. It was erected by Ontario's former Department of Lands and Forests (now the MNR) as an early detection to protect the local forests from fire. This tower was put out of use in the late 1960s when aerial detection systems were put in place. It was one of the County of Haliburton's many towers that were part of the former Lindsay Forest Fire District. Other towers included: Harburn, Eyre, Green's Mountain, Harvey, Cardiff, Digby, Lutterworth, Sherbourne (St. Nora), Dorset and Bruton. When a fire was spotted in the forest a towerman would get the degree bearings from his respective tower and radio back the information to headquarters. When one or more towermen from other towers in the area would also call in their bearings, the forest rangers at headquarters could get a 'triangulation' read and plot the exact location of the fire on their map. This way a team of forest firefighters could be dispatched as soon as possible to get the fire under control. There was a Department of Lands and Forests headquarters stationed in Minden, Ontario and at St. Nora Lake (later the Leslie Frost Centre), which offered forest ranger training from 1945 onwards.

See also


External links

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