Updated November 2, 8.30 am. There are still pockets of Muskoka without power — near Windermere, north of Torrance and in the Lake of Bays area but HydroOne hopes everyone will be back on line by noon today. Some Muskokans have been without power since Monday night or sometime early Tuesday.
Updated Oct. 31. 230pm: While some Muskokans still wait for the power to come on, HydroOne is estimating most homes should be back on by about 5 pm tonight. There are some pockets west of Highway 400 and near Mactier that could remain out until almost midnight. Take extra care and extra flashlights if out trick or treating tonight!
Updated Oct. 30 6pm. Muskokans are still feeling the wrath of Sandy as many remain without power — and Hydro One reports some may stay that way until tomorrow, October 31. Some affected areas presently include Minett, Bass Lake, a section of 169 north of Butterfly Lake, and along the shore of Lake Muskoka on Hwy 118 from Tondern Island in the north to almost Golden Beach Road near Bracebridge. That area of over 500 Hydro One customers affected includes the Leonard Lake area. Some Moon River residents are still patiently waiting for power to return. Affected areas west of Highway 11, mostly in Muskoka Lakes township may not have power restored until sometime late tomorrow. A large number of homes east of Highway 11 along Highway 118 are also without power but crews hope to have them back on before midnight.
If you have Internet, you can check HydroOne.com/stormcentre for updates. Or call the outage line at 1-800-434-1235.
Updated Oct.30, 1pm: Power is being restored across Muskoka but there are still spots across our region and in west Muskoka in particular that could be without power for several hours. If you have an Internet connection or smartphone, go to www.hydroone.com and click on the Storm Centre map to find your location. Power came back on for Bracebridge and Torrance before noon and Bala was restored just before 1 pm. So far, MNW has received reports of relatively minor damage such as branches down and docks damaged. If you are still without power and need information, please ask a neighbour to contact @MuskokaMedia by twitter or email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll try and get answers for you.
Updated Oct. 29, 9pm: There are pockets of power outages across rural areas of Muskoka and HydroOne reports crews are on scene at these locations. Estimated restore times vary from 10 p-m until one a-m. HydroOne maps show the largest outage, possibly affecting over 500 customers, is in an area north of 169 stretching from Walker’s Point to Long Lake in Bala and northward to Shaw Island off East Bay. Up to 500 customers are reportedly without power in the Bass Lake area. There are also outages reported around 3 Mile Lake, Bala and Rosseau and in Lake of Bays.
Posted Oct. 29, 6pm. As trees sway outside our windows in Muskoka, you may be wondering what the next 24 hours might bring weather-wise in our part of Ontario. Muskoka is expected to experience what might be considered a normal fall storm for our parts, while Southern Ontario is battening down the hatches. Environment Canada is forecasting 10-15mm of rain for tonight.
If you’re concerned and want to be extra sure you’re ready for anything, the Ontario government has issued an emergency preparedness bulletin at www.ontario.ca/sandy
For up to date weather reports from Environment Canada, click here.
But what about those flood prone areas of our region: what if we get more rain than expected? Local Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) staff report we should expect “significantly less rainfall as compared to areas to the south of the Parry Sound District that includes the Muskoka River watershed.”
Presently our lakes and rivers are said to be in good shape and should not be significantly affected by Sandy (aka “Frankenstorm” due to additional and combined meteorological factors). The MNR does caution that we will likely see somewhat higher water levels in our local lakes and river courses but flooding or high water issues are not expected.
Best advice? Keep an eye on those potentially damaging winds though as it may be more than just the remaining Muskoka leaves that fall. Certainly having back up power and lighting sources is always a good idea in Muskoka. Note: The lights have flickered in the MNW office earlier today, so keep the flashlights handy. For some, a fine brew from Lake of Bays Brewing Company or Muskoka Brewery may be especially comforting this evening.
Stay dry and safe, Muskoka.