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Date of the Expedition

From May 25 to May 28, 2023

Registration Deadline

15 April 2023

Activity

Voyageur canoe

Place

Poisson Blanc Reservoir, QC

Age Group

30 to 39 years old

  • Undergoing Treatment*

Number of Participants

10 maximum

Description

This expedition will offer a group of young adults (30-39 y/o) undergoing treatments the chance to join a voyageur canoe expedition on the great Poisson blanc reservoir in Quebec.

The first day, we meet in either Montreal or Gatineau for the bus ride to Air Eau Bois Camp where we’ll spend our first night. As we get acquainted, we will learn the canoeing techniques needed for our expedition on the Poisson Blanc Reservoir. We will familiarize ourselves with the large Voyageur canoes which are capable of carrying up to ten paddlers. In the evening, we will prepare our baggage, engage in discussions and take time to enjoy the warm surroundings of the Gîte.

The next day after breakfast, we pack our food and set out. Once the Voyageur canoes are loaded, we start on our 3-day and 2-night expedition to discover the beautiful wilderness of the Outaouais Region. Paddling on the Poisson Blanc Reservoir, we will see tall white pines and, with a little bit of luck, many species of birds and small mammals. If the group decides they would like a bigger challenge, we will portage to a small isolated lake. Like the long-ago voyageurs, we will portage our equipment and our boats to explore another body of water. Together, we will live the nomadic life, travelling over water with all we need to live. In the evening, we will set up camp and prepare the evening meal. After a full day of paddling, we can relax around the campfire, with marshmallows to roast and stories to tell.

Expedition Members

On our team are two adventure facilitators whose role is to ensure the smooth running of all activities. They are supported by a medical team – composed of a doctor, an oncology pivot nurse and a psychosocial professional – whose shared mission is to ensure the good health of all members of the expedition. In addition to these experts, our team includes three logistics taking care of technical elements (meals, transport, etc.), and a photographer-blogger responsible for capturing the best moments of this great adventure in words and images.

Geography and History

West of the Papineau-Labelle Wilderness Reserve, the Poisson Blanc Regional Park is a 30-kilometre reservoir with more than 80 islands. Canoe-camping enthusiasts will be charmed by the wild, isolated and ultra-calm landscapes with an endless view over water.

Frédéric Sauvé, Espace magazine

The many sandy beaches on our way will mean many opportunities to take a break or have a picnic. Île Perdue (Lost Island), Île à l’Aigle (Eagle Island), Île Mystérieuse (Mystery Island) and Parois Éléphant (Elephant Wall) will be our world, our territory.

Before colonization, this part of Quebec was Algonquin territory. As its name suggests,The Poisson Blanc is a man-made reservoir. Early in the 18th century, the main activity of the French settlers was trapping and fur trading and many trading posts lined the Lievre River. Over time, fur trading declined and, in 1806, Philémon Wright from Boston started the forestry industry in the Outaouais Region.

Forestry in the region was based mainly on white pine, used in the European ship building industry. In the mid-nineteenth century, sawmills appeared in the region to transform the wood prior to selling it. To facilitate floating the logs down the river, the McLaren family built dams and dykes along the Lievre River. Consequently, around 1930, the Poisson Blanc reservoir was formed in the floods caused by the new infrastructure.

The year 1993 marked the end of the timber runs on the Lievre River and the beginning of tourism development. Many parks, hunting camps, campgrounds and vacation areas were created along the Lievre River and the Poisson Blanc Reservoir.

Schedule

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