Finally Off Of Lake Winnipeg!

Carol and Glenn are very excited to finally be off Lake Winnipeg!  It was an extremely challenging several weeks but they are officially done!

Now, they are happily paddling upstream on the Winnipeg River.  As they go further upstream towards Ontario, it is beginning to look more like the Canadian Shield.  They are seeing Jack Pines, Spruce, Oak and a whole lot of rock!  It is a welcomed change of scenery from the prairies!  And a positive reminder they are close to their very own province!

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Before reaching Kenora, Ontario, Carol and Glenn still need to go over 7 hydroelectric dams. Each one will be a challenge in itself.  But they are always up for a good challenge!

Last week Carol and Glenn were on page 9 of Express Weekly News based out of Gimli, Manitoba.  Check out the link below!

http://www.expressweeklynews.ca/split_document.aspx?doc=ExpressWeeklyNews090618.pdf

When Carol and Glenn arrived in Gimli, which is on the the south basin of Lake Winnipeg, they were greeted with a very warm welcome from locals on the beach!  It was a very calm day as you can see in the picture below!

A box of dehydrated food was graciously received weeks earlier by Karen the Execution Director at Evergreen Basic Needs (EBN) in Gimli, Manitoba, sent from home by friends.  This will sustain them until the end of their trip.

EBN is a charitable organization that works towards eliminating hunger through food distribution, education and support programs in Gimli, Manitoba.  Carol and Glenn were treated to a healthy home made lunch at the Cafe consisting of donated local vegetables. They also have a thrift store called Respun Threads. Both the Cafe and Respun Threads sustain the programs that are the pride of this small wonderful community. Check out the EBN website for more information!
Carol and Glenn were very happy to experience and see the benefits of another organization working towards access to food for everyone. They are still delighted to be canoeing in honour of Loving Spoonful and paddling each day for their goal of $10, 000.  If you would like to donate click on the link below!  Everything helps this wonderful cause!
Keep up the AWESOME journey!

The Challenges on Lake Winnipeg!

Carol and Glenn have certainly had their fair share of challenges and obstacles on Lake Winnipeg!  I (Carol’s daughter) have not heard from them in about 2 weeks!  But I knew everything was OK based on their daily SPOT check-ins and Progress Reports that Glenn’s Uncle John has been creating!

First of all, Tuesday, August 14th was their 100th day on this adventure from Vancouver, British Columbia to Ottawa, Ontario!  And they are still having a blast and smiling everyday! Congratulations!!

Lake Winnipeg is the 6th largest freshwater lake in Canada, exceeding Lake Ontario in size!  It is a very shallow lake with unpredictable winds that create high waves.  One of the biggest obstacles they have had are these waves.  And they actually capsized about a week ago!  They are OK but had quite the scare and quite the amount of items to dry out!

Fortunately, they did not lose any items but they did lose time from drying!  The capsize happened day 5 on Lake Winnipeg.  After a long day of paddling, around an extremely large point called Long Point, Carol and Glenn were unable to find a campsite.  They were tired but had to keep going, the winds picked up and flipped them right over!  This area of Lake Winnipeg is completely remote, no people, no cell service, no roads, no towns, no boats just the wild!

Along with capsizing Carol and Glenn have had their fair share of animal obstacles! A few days ago they came across a really nice campsite (which are hard to come by) but it was already taken by a pack of wolves!  They decided to let the wolves have their own campsite and continued on!  This put them at a record of 11 hours in one day in a canoe!

Also, the next day, while Glenn was doing the supper dishes on a beach,he was startled by Carol as he saw her shadow and thought she was a bear!. They both had a chuckle and Glenn continued to rinse the dishes only to see a bear approaching for real. With a spatula in hand he started yelling at the bear. The bear took notice. Only after banging their limited pots and pans together the bear left.

Maybe Carol was wearing this as she approached Glenn and scared him! (These are really 2 waterproof Skully Bags. One has all their clothes for 3 seasons.  The other has sleeping gear).

The below picture is a portion of Lake Winnipeg that Glenn’s Uncle John has created to show how they are by-passing coves to save time!  When the weather is good Carol and Glenn take advantage of crossing wider more open spaces of water!  The largest hop was 25 kilometers with a few small rocky islands in between.

Some very helpful locals at Grand Rapids ( where they started on Lake Winnipeg ) said if there is a north east wind, find a deep cove and be prepared to spend 2 days or more there as the lake is too dangerous for anyone to be on.

As of Aug. 27th they have spent 7 days on land and 9 paddling.  Carol and Glenn spend almost as much time on land waiting for winds to end as they do in the water! Thankfully there are nice beaches that they find along the way that that they totally enjoy exploring.

Keep up the amazing paddling!!!!!!

Lake Winnipeg

Carol and Glenn have made it to Lake Winnipeg and are travelling down the western shoreline until they arrive in Winnipeg. They expect to be on this lake anywhere from 3-6 weeks, weather depending.  Before arriving at this lake they were on the beautiful Cedar Lake, Manitoba.

The picture above is of the sun setting on Cedar Lake, Manitoba.  The haze was created by the burning forest fires in Alberta and British Columbia.  There were many islands and bays that they had to guide through on Cedar Lake.  Carol and Glenn had to pull out all of their resources to guide them through this lake which included their GPS, compass and map.

At one of their campsites on Cedar lake they were greeted by local fishermen.  They gave Carol and Glenn Pickerel and an update on the current weather!

After Cedar Lake they made it to Lake Winnipeg which has been a challenge already!  It is a very big lake with regular windy conditions and violent storms.  They have been winded already for a few days. Fortunately, the fishermen in the above picture warned them of the winds coming and they were able to find a protected campsite which is in the picture below. They will wait for the wind to die down and continue on their adventure!

Carol and Glenn have been passing by and camping on a variety of First Nations land.  Each time they have been welcomed to stay for as long as they need and have had the opportunity to learn about their culture and the importance of their land. “The waters flow free to all those that pass,” is a quote they have heard more than once.

                                

Keep on Paddling!

In Manitoba Headed for Lake Winnipeg

Carol and Glenn are very excited to be in Manitoba already!  They are almost finished paddling the Saskatchewan River and will be heading into Lake Winnipeg very shortly! Below is a picture of a map to show just how intricate and maze like the Saskatchewan River is.  They had to watch very carefully where the main current of the river flowed and used a GPS to guide them through the most challenging parts.  As the main waterway splits into many branches and arteries.

Carol and Glenn are very happy to be finished with the Saskatchewan River. Below is a picture of the Saskatchewan River Delta by Basia Irland, National Geographic. This section of the river has the largest fresh water delta in North America.  This particular area covers 10,000 square km!

The Saskatchewan River Delta is a sensitive area that plays an important role for the Metis and Cree First Nations and other communities in the area.  It is also one of the oldest and most important historic Hudson Bay Fur Trading post communities in Western Canada.  Carol and Glenn were able to find a beautiful camp site in the delta.

But they had to get into their tent pretty quick as the mosquitoes have been very intense!

That night they had a special visitor, a coyote.  The coyote approached their tent and barked and howled at them for 5 minutes before swimming back to the mainland.  The coyote was more than likely protecting her young as they are often quite timid and quiet.  Below is another picture on the Saskatchewan River Delta with a storm rolling in!

In a few days, Carol and Glenn will take on Lake Winnipeg which can be unpredictable in terms of wind, current and shallow waters so they may need to do some paddling at night! They predict they will be on this lake anywhere from 3-6 weeks!

Keep on Paddling!

2,658 km Completed!

Carol and Glenn have been loving their time on the South Saskatchewan River!  Last week they paddled under a bridge coming into Saskatoon. This was the same bridge they crossed the train on to arrive in Vancouver almost 3 months ago!

Upon arrival in Saskatoon, Carol and Glenn decided to stay a few nights at the Gordon Howe Campground.  At the campground they were able to reconnect with old friends from Kingston who now live in Saskatoon!  The couple had picked up mailed supplies (50 lbs worth) for Carol and Glenn including a months worth of dehydrated food to keep them going!

Carol and Glenn managed to stuff all the new supplies into 2 barrels before heading back out on the South Saskatchewan River which has turned into the Saskatchewan River. And the only neighbours they see are the beavers swimming a long side them.

Over the last 6 days they have managed to paddle almost 400 km to Nipawin with the wind on their backs! So far they have completed 2, 658 km in total!

Keep on Paddling!

Halfway Done In Saskatchewan

Carol and Glenn continue to be amazed and feel extremely fortunate for the wonderful people they have met so far along their adventure.  They have had campsites paid for, been offered transportation to get fresh food,  taken out for dinner and have had meals prepared for them!

Every opportunity Carol and Glenn get they explain to people who and what they are canoeing for! If you would like to help Glenn and Carol reach their goal of $10, 000  for Loving Spoonful, click on the link below to donate!  Everything helps!

canoeforchange.ca

In this photo, the people in the boat invited Carol and Glenn to pull up for strawberries, banana chips, hummus, cheese and cinnamon buns. As it turns out these same individuals waited  as Carol and Glenn portaged across the 17th hole on a golf course the day before!  They heard about their journey and purposely went out on the water the next day in hopes of crossing paths with them.

Carol and Glenn continue to enjoy the South Saskatchewan River!  They have already made it halfway across the beautiful province.  Along the way they are experiencing changing terrain. Sometimes, they even have to drag their canoe over sandbars due to low water but their smiles never stop.

In the picture below Carol and Glenn passed a field of Canola.  The river valley is becoming flatter so they are able to climb up banks to see views like this.  In this specific area wheat, lentils and corn are also grown.  Saskatchewan is very special in many ways!  The north is covered by forests and lakes and the south is made up of golden fields, grasslands, rolling hills and badlands!

Keep on Paddling!

Saskatchewan!

Carol and Glenn made it to Saskatchewan last week!  They are very excited with all the progress they have made so far!  It took them 41 days to go through British Columbia and only 16 days to go through Alberta! They are very curious as to how many days they will be spending in Saskatchewan!

Above is a picture of Glenn on the South Saskatchewan River from where the river starts at the basin of the Old Man River and the Bow River.  It is 320 km of remote wilderness with the exception of Medicine Hat. Most of this land has been designated Wilderness Area for the past 40 years.  Carol and Glenn had the privilege of seeing antelope, mule, deer, a bull moose with her calf and hearing coyotes howling at night time.

Carol and Glenn were paddling through the Badlands last week!  The Fur Traders called this section of the South Saskatchewan River and Bow River the, “Bad River.”

                  

The winds are very strong in this specific area of the river along with violent thunderstorms!  Also, they were fortunate to be paddling through this area now as the water is high. But each day they notice the water is getting lower!

All together the South Saskatchewan River is 1,392 km long! They have been enjoying their time on this River and sometimes feel like they are going in circles as it is very curvy!  However, they are passing some beautiful landscapes and land-formations such as these coulees below.

Keep on Paddling!

South Saskatchewan River

Carol and Glenn are almost out of Alberta and into Saskatchewan.  They are happily paddling down the South Saskatchewan River and are quite enjoying the astonishing geology of their surroundings! Also, they are finding many interesting fossils along the way!  Quite different from what they are used to seeing in Ontario!

A few days ago they found a great campsite just before Medicine Hat, Alberta, under a massive Cottonwood tree!  The river is lined with these trees and are an excellent source of shade!

In the picture below, Carol is enjoying her breakfast of oatmeal, prunes and flax seed under a beautiful Cottonwood tree.  An excellent place to put your feet out and relax before a busy day of paddling down the South Saskatchewan River.

Keep on Paddling!

Back on the Water!

Carol and Glenn are very happy to be back on the water for a long period of time!  They started their journey a few days ago on the Old Man River in Alberta.  The river is full of roll-away rapids and has a very strong current which is helping them gain some serious distance, with a bit of much needed relaxation!

While paddling down the Old Man River they happened to pass by a pod of Pelicans!  Something they were very surprised to see in Alberta and astonished by their beauty and presence.

The Old Man River has also provided them with a few challenges!  They had to portage around a weir which is a low dam built across a river to raise the level of water upstream and regulates its flow.  They had to make their way through long grass and barbed wire fence.  However, they are fully immersed back in nature with no people or traffic noises!  Which is just where they want to be!

On Saturday they had quite the rain storm and are now drying all of their things out!  Carol and Glenn are now in Lethbridge, Alberta re-stalking a few supplies and gearing up for the rest of the Old Man River!

Keep on Paddling!

Finally in Alberta!

After a lot of walking, biking and canoeing Carol and Glenn have finally made it to Alberta!

Just before they reached Alberta they spent a night camping out in a ditch as it was the only place to set up camp.

They were just finishing up supper when a pickup truck came a long with a couple looking for rocks for their garden!  They all started to chat and Glenn helped them put rocks in their truck.  The couple offered to take them on an extensive tour of Fernie B.C. Just another example of how friendly people have been along the way!

The last few days reaching the Alberta border were a combination of walking and canoeing!  They had a record 29 km walking day! Good thing there are beautiful views a long the way!

 

Carol and Glenn will soon be back on the water full time heading down many kilometers on the Old Man River!

Keep on Paddling!