The town of Hearst is located on the TransCanada Highway, about 250 km northeast of Timmins, the regional centre for this part of Ontario. Given its location in the heart of the Boreal forest, Hearst evolved as a lumber town, and remains one to this day. It has the highest percentage of French-speakers in Ontario, although services in the town are also available in English. Hearst is renowned for hunting (it proclaimed itself the moose capital of Canada years ago), fishing and more than 1,000 kilometres of snowmobile trails. Forestry companies Tembec and Columbia Forest Products have operations in Hearst. It is also home to a French-language satellite campus of Laurentian University, the Université de Hearst.