Paddlenorth is in good company with books by Dave Olesen, Michael Winter, Andrew Peacock and Barry Blanchard on this list for the “cosy explorer” by the Toronto Star.
A review of Paddlenorth by Conor Mihell at Canoe & Kayak Magazine. “Paddlenorth is compulsively readable…Her prose is lean, raw and inspiring—the hallmarks of great travel writing.”
The Saturday Travel section of the Globe and Mail this week was devoted to travel books. The books editor got together with the travel editor and created a list of the best books to kickstart your wanderlust. Paddlenorth was chosen.
My book, “Paddlenorth: A Journey into the Heart of the Tundra,” will be published by Greystone Books in the fall of this year. It is the story of my 54-day canoe trip on Nunavut’s Back River back in 2005.
“During a grim yuletide on Great Slave Lake, a team of starving explorers yearn for the gift of survival.” This is the story of George Back’s first Christmas as commander of an Arctic expedition. Appointed by the British Admiralty, he was tasked with finding the Thlew-ee-choh, now called the Back River, and following it to the Arctic coast.
Cougar Creek in Canmore looked wild and exciting on the evening of Wednesday, June 19. My partner Toby and I were staying with Toby’s brother whose house backs directly on to the creek, and we went for a stroll before bed. The fire department was starting to put up caution tape, and the bank was abuzz with walkers and joggers. Almost everyone wielded a camera.
By 5:30 a.m. on Thursday, the story had entirely changed. As the fire department pounded on doors up and down the street, we heard our names.
“Toby! Jenny! We’ve got to get out.” . . .
The Mississippi River Canoe Route is one of the oldest recreational canoe routes in Canada, but it doesn’t get very much use these days. In the last 20 years, it has fallen out of favour in the paddling community, though little along the river has changed. Mike O’Mally and Alex Broadbent are hoping to put this paddler’s paradise back on the map. Click through to the full post for an audio link to this story from CBC’s In Town and Out.
It’s been three years since I defended my master’s in creative non-fiction writing at the University of Victoria, and since then I’ve done a lot more thinking about wilderness – about how it is both a real place and a construction, how it has its own essence regardless of where we find it. So on this three year anniversary of my defense, as my manuscript makes the round of publishers, I wanted to share Sherwin Arnott’s analysis of my work, from 2010.
When Arthur Moffatt set off for the Barrenlands in 1955, he envisioned a land of plenty. He was plenty wrong. This story captures some of the history of the Moffatt expedition on Nunavut’s Dubawnt River.
Five friends and I completed a 54-day canoe expedition on Nunavut’s Back River in the summer of 2005. I was ready to be tested, but I never imagined the combination of grief, beauty and disaster that would push me to the limit and leave me with a new understanding of the wild. I wrote this essay at the Banff Centre’s Literary Journalism program in 2005.