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David Thompson Exploration: Paddle with the Eagles

The Columbia River holds a history and a heartbeat. Paddle into the past, as we travel on the David Thompson’s 1811 historic route along a portion of the Columbia River with Columbia River Paddle.

This mighty river flows for 2,000 km (1,243 mi.), beginning in Canal Flats, BC and ending at the Pacific Ocean in Oregon. Explore this vastness as we paddle on one of the world’s living natural treasures. Stay in cozy cabin tents and enjoy a gourmet fireside meal under the stars.  Guided 2-day tours available starting in May.

Coming soon! Columbia River Paddle are offering 2 weekends with Women on Water, an overnight paddle board trip. This opportunity is a great way to get out and explore the valley with a group of like-minded women perhaps in a way you never have before! Be sure to monitor their website to find out when these trips are happening.

Canadian Mountain Experience specializes in canoeing, kayaking and SUPing with a relaxed, easy paced approach in the spectacular setting of the Columbia River Valley (Invermere-on-the-Lake). They offer a wide-variety of unique ways to discover the lakes and rivers in the area.

Less than 1-Hour

Enjoy an ice-cream, cold drink, coffee or snack while you unwind and relax at the Kinsmen Beach (Lake Windermere) in Invermere, BC.

1 to 4-Hours

Self-guided paddles by canoe, kayak and SUP are available for 1 to 4 hours on the Columbia River and/or Lake Windermere. Or spend a leisurely morning or afternoon on the ‘Lazy River’ (as it’s known by the locals) as you paddle the Columbia River Wetland habitat between Invermere and Radium Hot Springs. This tour includes pick-ups & transfers (Radium Hot Springs to Invermere).

Guided ‘Interpretative Wetland’ tours explores the famous Columbia Wetlands. This two-hour excursion follows the David Thompson paddling route of the pristine wetlands. The Lazy River paddle is also available as a guided excursion.

An eight-person voyager canoe or float is available too. These fun adventures float through the vibrant natural channels with plenty of opportunities to view the wildlife/birds.

They also offer team-building paddling expeditions for companies, families and friends.  Enjoy paddling (in a kayak, canoe or voyager canoe) the ‘river’ — while working together and having fun with Mother Nature.

For those who have never paddled — they also offer a ‘Paddling School’ for flat and white-water.  ‘Take the Rust Off’ is offered to whitewater kayakers, it’s held at Kinsmen beach every Friday at 4pm (and includes a burger).  For all of the SUP paddlers they offer a 2-hour & 4-hour lesson.

And if you want more rapid whitewater paddling excursions they also offer more adrenaline pumping action… as well as their para-gliding lessons (here you’ll be soaring high above with the eagles)!

Know Before You Go – The Kootenays are home to a vast network of rivers, streams and lakes. If you’re out enjoying these waters, it’s important to be prepared. Always wear your PFD/life jacket and visible clothing/gear – it’s important to be seen! Let someone know of your route and stick to the plan. Check weather forecasts and prepare for it to change quickly. Know your limits with river terrains, and stick to what you know! BC Adventure Smart is a great resource to help you get informed before heading into the outdoors! If you’re new to a sport or region, that’s ok! We all have to start somewhere! That’s why it’s important to consider hiring a certified guide for paddling and participating in one of these programs. Take a training course to become well-equipped! There are tons of opportunities to do so in the area.

Related Stories
~ Endless Adventures: Kayaking to the Renata Natural Arch
~ Paddle Adventures in the Kootenays
~ SUPsquatching: Sightings in Fernie, BC
Story by KootRocks Staffer (Shannon Harrison).  Cover/top photo courtesy of Columbia River Paddle.
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