Canada has one fifth of the world’s fresh water. Big lakes, little lakes, marshes, wetlands – and a complicated web of rivers connect them all.
Where there wasn’t a lake or ocean, a river would support the needs of human settlers, plus provide a pre-road mode of transportation. Every place I have lived in Canada not on a lake or ocean has had its river: some larger (the Assiniboine and Red joining in Winnipeg), some minuscule (the Canagagigue Creek in my hometown).
Paddling on a river — whether in a canoe or kayak — now tends to be done for leisure, on weekends or during a holiday.
Pictured here is one of many small rivers lacing the Bruce Peninsula in Ontario, which feed either into Lake Huron on the west side of the peninsula, or Georgian Bay to the east. This river is lined by well-kept and well-loved cottages, some inhabitable in warm weather only and some built for year-round use. The river rises and falls, gently. Birds and critters flit at its edge, while ducks and other water fowl swim serenely by.
This river is relatively short and can be easily explored even by an amateur kayaker, such as me. If you tip, the shore is nearby.
Photo: Kelley Teahen