Obstacle Course
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Obstacle Course

Obstacle Course

June 6, 2022

Near historic low water level for this time of year on the North Saskatchewan River look like this up close and personal.  Basically, there is no river. What there is of it consists of a convoluted, meandering mess of sandbars.

Faced with a bewildering array of choices at every bend, it’s anybody’s guess which way to go. We are often out and pulling the canoes over sand and gravel covered by less than an inch of water in the middle of the river. The worst part of it all is that the current is less than half of what I expected. Instead of a 25km per day boost to our daily runs, we are seeing something in the order of 5-8km.

The upshot. of it all is that we are slow. Slow because of the extra distance travelled going back and forth bank to bank looking for water we can paddle in, slow because we are often paddling in water not deep enough to dip more than half of the paddle blade, and slow because there is a decided lack of current.

But slow is still better than stopped. And lately the wind has blown us to a stop on a couple of occasions.

There are things you can control and thing you cannot, sandbars decidedly falling among the latter. One’s sanity is best preserved by learning to live with the difference between the two.