This summer, Alana McClements '22 and Clara Goldberger '22 got Ledyard funding to head up to Ontario for a five-day clinic at the Madawaska Kanu Centre. Here's what Alana had to say:
After driving the 7 hours from Hanover, stopping at Chipotle, and witnessing possibly the longest and most beautiful sunset of all time, Clara and I rolled up to MKC at about 11:30 on the Sunday before our course started. We set up the tent and met a nice man named Greg and looked at the stars.
Some notable moments:
The first 3 days we paddled on the Madawaska practicing ferrys, S turns, eddy catching and rolling. There were lots of bugs but we improved a lot! Our instructor was this rad gal who lives in her van and ski patrols in the winter. The other 2 gals in our group were Dominique (French Canadian kayaking QUEEN) and Marcy, this badass mom! Then there was Phil, the only dude in our group. He wore a dry suit every day (It was like 80 degrees) and had a go pro on his helmet and the best Canadian accent of all time but he swam about every 10 minutes.
On day 2 I was failing at surfing at Claudia’s rock. While rolling up my paddle got stuck between 2 rocks on the bottom and trapped underwater (I still rolled up, HAH). But then Kaylee, our instructor, had to go fish it out and the tip was very bent so I paddled with a duct taped paddle the rest of the trip. (Sorry I took a leader paddle, Michael said it was ok on Green Key Friday so I assumed it was fine).
Days 4 and 5 we paddled the Ottawa which was INSANE! It was crazy big water and at the first rapid (Phils hole) we got to see the keeners on Beatdown Thursdays (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g9qecW8jT44). It was such a sweet day with beautiful weather and some pretty spooky class 3+ rapids. The last rapid, Lower No Name, was especially sick, but there was tons of carnage because Ryan (the other instructor ;)) led a terrible line and we all got wrecked.
Some other tidbits: