Canadian Professional Paddling Conference - September 24-26
Paddle Canada is organizing the second annual Canadian Professional Paddling Conference taking place in Minden at the Gull River Wildwater Preserve. This event is aimed towards canoe, sea kayak and whitewater kayak instructors with seminars and on-water sessions lead by some of the best instructors across Canada.
One of the highlights of the weekend is a pre-conference course running all day Friday September 24th. It’s a Big Canoe Intermediate Leader course. The 6-hour course will focus on learning how to lead/sten groups in Voyageur Canoes. It will also cover items like history, programming ideas, risk management, safety and how to talk with a bad French accent. If your company runs programs using big canoes, putting your staff through the program is something you might want to consider for sure.
More info: paddlebuzz.ca
Ontario Greenland Camp – September 10-12
If you are interested in Greenland Style Paddling then you will want to register for the Ontario Greenland Camp running this September. It’s organized by learntokayak.ca and they are bringing in some pretty heavy hitters to help with instruction. The key-note speakers include Cheri Perry and Turner Wilson, Adam Hansen (all the way from Greenland) and Heather Lamon.
The Ontario Greenland Camp is taking place at Camp Tamarack near Bracebridge, Ontario and they only have spaces for 50 people. Last I heard there were only a couple of spaces left so if you are interested in attending you had better act fast.
More info: ontariogreenlandcamp.com
Surfing Superior Confluence – October 1-3
Kayak surfers will be pleased to know that the Surfing Superior Confluence will be happening again this year at the mouth of the mighty Michipicoten River just outside of Wawa, Ontario on Lake Superior.
Naturally Superior Adventures puts it together and the event is awesome. The easiest way to describe it is a pretty informal gathering of intermediate to advanced paddlers who are keen to get out and do some surfing during the gales of autumn. Registration for the event includes a beach campsite and hearty, home-cooked meals at Rock Island Lodge, and a Saturday night house concert.
More info: naturallysuperior.com
Georgian Bay Storm Gathering – October 14-17
This is my event so I’m plugging it last. The Georgian Bay Storm Gathering is billed as one last weekend paddling in the storms of the Bay before winter sets in. It was also designed to provide an opportunity for intermediate and advanced paddlers to practice the skills and rescues that we always wish we could try in a controlled setting.
The great thing about the Gathering is that it is as loose or formal as you want it to be. For those who are looking for organized sessions there are clinics that will help you learn about rock hopping or staying safe in surf. For those looking for a more informal weekend, you can take part in the many organized adventure tours up the Bay or just go out paddling yourself. Just make sure you are back in time for the Saturday night fish fry.
This event is perfect for those who have always wanted to get stuck on rocks, slide off a high dock or develop some good lies stories to tell at your next outing with friends.
More info: georgianbaystormgathering.com
Fall Paddling Events in OntarioWednesday, 18 August 2010
Summer is more than half over and it’s sadly time to start thinking about fall paddling events. Here in Ontario there are several events that are shaping up to be really rock solid and worth checking out.
Greenland Style Symposium – August 26-29
Skinny stick paddlers will want to make note that the Greenland Style Symposium that takes place in Wawa, Ontario is coming up very fast. It’s an awesome weekend of low key learning and general fooling around.
They have a great line-up presenters (if I do say so myself). The gang going to be there includes Bonnie Perry, Doug Van Doren, Keith Wikle and myself as the general paddle and water carrier.
If you don’t already own your own Greenland paddle, don’t worry. Registration includes use of their paddlers. This is a good way to try out various designs and sizes before you buy or make your own.
For those who want to get more bang for their long drive, come up early and participate in their joint Paddle Canada level 2 and BCU 3* course that starts August 22 and runs right up to the starts of the Symposium.
More info: naturallysuperior.com
David Johnston has been introducing people to the sport of sea kayaking for the past 15 years. He is a senior instructor trainer with Paddle Canada and teaches for several paddling schools in Ontario, Canada. Full Bio.