Trip Preparation Guide
The following are general guidelines to prepare yourself for the adventure of a lifetime with Canoe North Adventures. You will be contacted with detailed preparation instructions specific to your trip well before your departure date.
An important part of Canoe North Adventures trip planning is matching an appropriate route to the skill level of our participants. The pace of each trip is determined by the group and its least experienced member. For our canoe expeditions, you should be comfortable in and around water, and have at least some flatwater paddling experience. For more advanced trips, you should have whitewater experience combined with being a strong flatwater paddler.
When assessing the fit between a paddler and a river, we first look at the demands of the river. How technical is the river and what physical demands will it ask of paddlers. Are there elements of risk associated with remoteness, elevation change, weather or the length of the trip? We then look at the skills and physical ability of the paddler along with their attitude and overall ability. We encourage those thinking of coming on a Canoe North Adventure trip to conduct their own self-assessment but with the realization that most people underestimate their ability and skills. Most important is to talk to one of us to determine which river would be appropriate.
Accessing Our Rendezvous Points
Whitehorse, Yukon is the starting point for the Teslin, Big Salmon, South MacMillan, Pelly, and Yukon Rivers. Whitehorse can be accessed through Vancouver with either Air Canada, WestJet or Air North or via Edmonton and now Ottawa with Air North.
Norman Wells, Northwest Territories is the starting point for the Redstone, Great Bear, Mackenzie, Keele, Natla, Mountain, Ravensthroat, Snake, Horton, Arctic Red, Anderson and Hornaday Rivers. Norman Wells is accessed through Yellowknife with First Air and Canadian North.
Our clients are required to arrive one day prior to departure of their Canoe North Adventures expedition. Early arrival guarantees that your bags will catch up to you if they are delayed and that you have some time to acclimatize to the time change from other parts of the world. In Norman Wells, comfortable and convenient accommodation is available at our CNA Timber-Frame Lodge B&B. Departures are always scheduled the day after the trip returns requiring an overnight stay and final night dinner celebration Norman Wells or Whitehorse.
As you have camping gear and equipment, you may be required to use Special Services at the airport. All flights now require photo identification. Please be at the airport at least two hours before the flight departure. We have had trip members miss flights in the past! Flights to Whitehorse may arrive in one long day. Flights to Norman Wells require an overnight in either Edmonton or Yellowknife, although most trippers prefer to overnight in Yellowknife at The Explorer Hotel. We receive reduced airfare rates of 40% with First Air and are pleased to pass these savings on to our clients. Our special IT Fare is available through our local agent, Marlain Wietzes, firstname.lastname@example.org . Upon arrival, you will be met at the airport in either Norman Wells or Whitehorse by our Canoe North Adventures Staff and transferred to either our Lodge & Outfitting Centre or your hotel. There is storage available at our CNA Lodge or hotel where you can leave your luggage and domestic travel clothing while you are on trip.
You will be given a waterproof barrel pack for your personal gear when you arrive unless you have your own waterproof pack system. You will need to bring your clothing and gear in a suitcase or duffel bag. For those who travel from Ontario, we may have an extra Canoe North Adventures pack that we will ask you to bring north. The airline regulations vary so we ask you to check with your carrier about baggage limits and fees. Personal clothing and valuables like wallets, identification or airline tickets can be left in safe storage at Canoe North Adventures.
Personal Cash & Credit Card
There are bank machines in Norman Wells, Yellowknife and Whitehorse. We suggest you bring a small amount of cash to have on hand.
Accommodations & Reservations
Hotel accommodation and meals in Yellowknife are not included in your CNA expedition fee, although we are happy to assist with your reservations at reduced rates at the Explorer Hotel, Yellowknife.
Accommodation and meals in Norman Wells are at the Canoe North Adventures Lodge B&B and are not included in your CNA expedition fee.
First and last night hotel accommodation and meals in Whitehorse are not included in your Canoe North Adventures fee, however, we can assist with your hotel reservations at the Gold Rush Inn.
Pre-Trip Paddling Sessions
To be announced.
Canoe North Adventures Apparel
We have a handsome Canoe North Adventures logo and will be providing each of you with a complimentary four-colour T-shirt and a ballcap. We hope this will make a dynamic addition to your designer wardrobe!