2022 was our 50th year of business. Through generations of guides, guests, and owners the success of the season was the result of many hands. As we wrapped the season and settled into the routine of fall it was easy to be grateful for the year. But even as we pulled our chairs closer to the wood stove in the Yukon we weren’t done with the river yet.
Twice a year the team from Nahanni River Adventures and Canadian River Expeditions comes together to paddle, to learn, and to celebrate lives lived at rivers edge. These team trips are a chance to share amazing food and drink with friends, build community after a summer of expeditions, and to invest in ourselves. They are the core of what makes us unique as a business and what brings us together as a group of wilderness guides. As we share experiences, listen to our senior guides share their perspectives, and are reminded of why we do the work that we do, we are inspired to continue our journey.
Autumn 2022 was no different as we descended the Dumoine River in Quebec. Over four days we shared incredible meals full of local produce (being from the North I now have real tomato envy of those living in the Ottawa Valley), swapped tales around fires of white pine and birch, and slept under skies so full of stars they can only be described as luscious.
Through our time under the bright fall foliage we took a moment to reflect on the season that was and where we are heading as an organization.
Three big takeaways from our days together stood out for me.
- Communication is our strength. Whether through shared stories from one generation to the next, interpreting the lands through which we travel, or conspiring on our next conservation project, the flow of information is inspiring and enlightening!
- Conservation is what allows our organization to flourish. If it was not for protected and celebrated lands we likely wouldn’t exist. We see caribou as a keystone species and a sure indication of intact ecology. We will fight to see their habitat protected and to see the return of the herds to both the tundra and forests of this country.
- We will grow so we may complete our goals. As an organization we will expand to connect more people with the lands that sustain our soul. By investing in guide training, indigenous business, and art; earth, family and Nahanni River Adventures and Canadian River Expeditions will thrive for generations to come.
The next fifty years will undoubtedly fill our cups.