Ontario Abandoned Places

Documenting Canada's Abandoned Structures

Conmee Fire Tower

Ontario : Thunder Bay District
Location #4660

Location Owner:quiksilver
Creation Date: 5/1/2012
Last Updated: 9/22/2012

The tower was demolished on Saturday September 15, 2014. Just so you know where your tax dollars are going, they are using helicopters to long line the tower sections out one by one. The chopper company charges $1,500 an hour for the use of their chopper and it runs at about 4 hour procedure. Once you add in the cost of the crews going in to dismantle the tower sections you're looking at well over $10,000 per tower.

According to records this is actually called Conmee Tower, but everyone I know refers to it as "the old fire tower out by Sistonen`s corners" or, simply, "Sistonen's tower"

This fire tower is located a bit west of Thunder bay. Ontario has a long legacy attached to Forest Fire Fighting from the original 12 people appointed to safeguard crown land in 1887 until today with hundreds of people located around the province. Most of the towers were built between 1920 and 1950 by the Department of Lands and Forests which became the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources in 1972. Most of the towers were destroyed in the 70's as the use of aerial detection planes was introduced, some were dismantled by Fire Ranger crews, some with TNT placed at the bases and the odd one yanked over with a truck and left to decay on the mountain side. This was done to prevent lawsuits being filed against the province by curious and adventurous people climbing up decayed towers. It's really cool to see things like this still standing and looking back at how things worked nearly 100 years ago when a person would sit all day on the lookout for a column of smoke rising up on the horizon would alert fire crews of its location as accurately as he could to now where a small spotter plane will fly a patrol route and radio a precise UTM location to Fire Management Headquarters where a dispatch siren goes off and fire crews spring into action. Climbing on board a helicopter with water bombers and bird dog aircraft en route. From where Forest Fire protection was to where it is today is a really incredible story. I've been speaking with a person who knows the history of this tower quite well, to the point that he recalls the names of some of the people who worked in it. When I can put a full story together i will replace this description with it.

As a retired Ontario Fire Ranger places like this hold a special place in my heart, please respect this location while it's still around.

There is a ton of history available on the net about Ontario's fire towers and Forest Fire Control in Ontario here's the best link I've found

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Status: Demolished | Category: House or Farm

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Province: Ontario

sinkourswim says:
6/17/2013 1:20:08 PM

I went and saw this place yesterday. I was disappointed to see that the ladder does not start at the base, although I shoulda known that ahead of time! Here's a video I shot


quiksilver says:
9/30/2012 6:03:59 PM

i'm hoping to get up there next weekend, the weather this weekend has been perfect but i was in a rink coaching hockey since thursday, rare that i would not want to be in a rink but this was one of those occasions, cant wait to see the pics

sinkourswim says:
9/29/2012 10:21:37 PM

I going to see this place tomorrow afternoon...Perfect time of year

clay70 says:
5/5/2012 10:26:20 AM

are u a Forest Rangers tv show fan too? if so contact me..

sinkourswim says:
5/3/2012 10:04:09 PM

I'll have to ask my dad more about these things. He worked for the MNR

quiksilver says:
5/3/2012 1:46:40 PM

I took the pick with a Nikon D5000 and a 55mm to 200mm lens

clay70 says:
5/3/2012 1:43:12 PM

61 kms? u must have used zoom lense...

quiksilver says:
5/2/2012 6:27:16 PM

Just to give you and idea of the view up there, the sleeping giant is 61km away from the tower

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