Canoe the Heart

Celebrate 100 Years of wilderness as we welcome the paddlers of the 20-foot Voyageur Canoe on their 350 mile journey.

 Chik-Wauk Lodge on Saganaga Lake

Monday, July 13, 2009


Presentations, Slide Show, Children’s Activities, Canoe Rides and a Lunch to benefit the Gunflint Trail Historical Society     

Canoe the Heart of the Continent – Centennial Canoe Voyage from the website

The Canoe the Heart Expedition will commemorate the centennial of Quetico Provincial Park in Ontario, Canada and the centennial of the Superior National Forest in Minnesota, USA.  It also exemplifies and highlights the ongoing collaboration promoted by the Heart of the Continent Partnership that is part of the heritage of the “Border Lakes Region”. 

Participants in the expedition will crew a 24-foot voyageur canoe along a +350 – mile (+563 – kilometer) route that begins in Atikokan, Ontario and continues on to Fort Frances then follows the border through Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota into Superior National Forest at Crane Lake, through Ely, and onwards to Grand Marais, then along the Lake Superior shore to Grand Portage, ending at Fort Williams in Thunder Bay, Ontario.  Unlike the early voyageurs, participants will not have to carry 100-pound stacks of furs, but they will carry educational messages regarding Leave No Trace principles and non-native invasive species to deliver to those they meet along the way.                                                                                                                                               

The expedition is being sponsored by the Heart of the Continent Partnership – a Canadian/ American coalition of land managers and local stakeholders working together on cross-border projects that promote the economic, cultural and natural health of the lakes, forests and communities in the Ontario/Minnesota border region.  

 It is the expectation of the Partnership that this centennial voyage will bring together new and existing partners in such a way as to expand and deepen relations to benefit public lands.  To further this end, public events are being planned in local communities at points along the route, including Atikokan, International Falls, Crane Lake, Ely, Gunflint Trail, Grand Marais, Grand Portage, Fort Williams, and Thunder Bay.      

Individuals representing groups and organizations from the Heart of the Continent area, who are interested in joining the expedition, need to submit an application.  A participant fee will help to cover basic supplies and expenses. Individuals or organizations willing to help out as support crew or at one of the community events are welcomed. 

Additional information about the Heart of the Continent Partnership and about the Canoe the Heart Expedition is available on-line at: