Whitewater canoeing Pt. 2

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999 Days Around Africa: The Road Chose Me

The next morning the wind was down and we made our way down the shoreline of the West Arm of the lake.

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Dan and Bill on Bennett Lake

We checked and double-checked and made a group decision to cross, knowing full well we were all dead if we capsized. As Brett very calmly stated “If a grizzly bear falls out of the sky into the canoe right now, we’re not capsizing this boat”. We made it across with no problems at all, and just as we were nearing shore I hooked onto a 6lb lake trout – Bill was so excited there were a few tense moments of rocking side to side. We managed to keep things under control and got it aboard.

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Very proud Dan with his lake trout

Later in the day we pulled the canoe up a small creek to the most amazing lake I have ever seen – perfectly calm and tucked in between snow-capped peaks. I’m not supposed to name the lake, so I won’t and please don’t ask.

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Pulling up the small creek to the unamed lake

We stayed on the lake for two nights – we explored the entire length while fishing, swimming and enjoying ourselves immensely. Bill caught three Arctic Grayling which were just as tasty as the lake trout. One evening we again emptied the canoe and played around in the moving water of the creek. Brett showed me all his whitewater moves which were great fun and Bill and I were like maniacs zig-zagging this way and that, more or less in control.

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The three amigos at the unamed lake, lake trout cooking on the fire

As seems to be common for my trip in the north, there were lots of huge wildfires burning not far away, so the visibility dropped to almost zero when the smoke rolled in. We had planned to paddle the entire length of the west arm, but now that we couldn’t see the mountains lining the shore, we decided to cut it short and head somewhat for home.

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On the smokey lake

Again we crossed the arm and luckily managed to avoid all falling grizzlies. We found another gorgeous campsite and quietly watched the blood-red sun set behind the silhouetted mountains.

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The smokey sunset

For our final day we had only to stay close to shore and paddle all the way around to Carcross. The weather was great and the lake very still, but we knew that could change quickly and didn’t dare cross here were the lake is much much wider. We stopped for a swim at every opportunity and jumped in only to run out screaming seconds later simple smile

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Dan & Brett paddling

What an amazing trip and man-o-man did the victory ice cream taste great!

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Arriving at the Carcross takeout safe & sound

-Dan

(Once again A lot of the photos in this article were taken by Brett, credit goes to him.)


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6 Responses

  1. Rejeana in Alabama says:

    What you have lived in these past few days is as much adventure as most people get in their entire lifetime!

  2. Doris Madden says:

    Hi Dan, I am an old friend of your Mum and Dad. I lived in Warrnambool with your Mum way back in our youth. Julie, myself another friend went on a trip in a mini-minor around New Zealand in early 1970’s. It was heaps of fun but not as adventurous as what you are doing. I have been following with great interest your wonderful adventure and will enjoy reading your next blogs throughout your trip. Seems as thought Julie and Geoff have the travel bug too…i imagine you will catch up with them at some stage when they are in America. Keep on having a wonderful trip…from Doris in Warrnambool Australia.
    PS..hope you don’t mind me writing this but Julie told me about your website…so i will blame it on to her!!!

    • Dan says:

      Doris – great to hear from you! I hope Warnambool is treating you well. Mum hardly ever talks about the things she did Before Kids and when she does it’s all pretty vague and “yeah, I did that” haha.
      Mum and Dad have the travel bug for sure, I think it rubbed off from the 3 kids :) surely we’re a good influence.
      Doris I’m super happy you wrote on my site, feel free to do so whenever you get the urge.

      • Liz says:

        If we are going to start a discussion on when and where the travel bug started, I’m going to have to put my hand up and say that I was definately a big instigator! All hail the travelling Grec clan! :)

  3. Greg Rocklage says:

    Maybe I missed it but did you ever get to the hot spring you were looking for?

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