KI Indigenous Nation Water Expedition #KIWatershed


I will never look at a white rock in the same way again, at least not while camping in polar bear country.

At dusk after settling into camp on a large island in the Severn at the mouth of the Beaver River Allan, who has been filming the far shore, calmly says “there’s a polar bear over there.”

We look over at what appears to be a large white rock part way up the far bank about 200 m away.  But then the rock moves with the slow, deliberate, agile foot steps that can only belong to a bear who, after sitting on its giant haunches watching us, lumbers down to the water’s edge.  Seeing its size and sloping profile  it is clear that this is Wapusk – a polar bear – the largest of all land-based hunters on the planet.


NORTHERN LIGHTS – KI Water Expedition Update

Last night as we shared stories around the campfire we spotted a glow of light in the dark, cloudy sky.  Knowing that we were still far from any town we lay back to watch the display of northern lights.  As the clouds parted we were awed by ever shifting curtains, and stabbing rays of light in the otherwise black night.




RAPIDS ON THE SEVERN – Update from KI Water Expedition

Last night as we camped by the confluence Terry said "Katie you feel that?  There is a warm wind."  On previous evenings he, Louis, and Ronald had predicted the coming weather based on signs like the direction of the wind, the colour of the fire, or the position of the leaves on the alders.  "What does that mean," asked Katie. Terry laughed and said "I don't know."

But that warm wind did seem to herald a change.  Since that time the pace of excitement has dramatically picked up, with each day bringing new wonders greater than the last.  Yesterday we found ourselves in the middle of a woodland caribou migration.  Check out some great video and photos of the caribou. We set up camp at the last rapids on the Severn just before an intense thunder storm rolled in.


MIGRATION – KI Nation Paddlers Update: September 3

Peanut butter on Wassa crackers with honey for lunch again is getting maybe a little too familiar.

Our meal is interrupted by Ronald who points up river emphatically. We look but can't see anything new.

"Caribou," he whispers, "swimming."


Confluence: KI Nation Paddlers Update – September 2nd afternoon

The Fawn is as wide as a football field now and deep, having collected the waters of hundreds of tributaries draining 13,025 square kilometers of land. Our paddles rarely touch bottom anymore and only a few boulders – large erratics left by retreating glaciers – protrude above its surface. This is big water.


The Traders – KI Paddlers Update – September 2nd, morning

Terry pulls his canoe over to the left bank unexpectedly. We follow him up the steep sandy bank to find a dark stone with white writing.


PITTICOW RIVER – KI Paddlers Update – September 1

Today we passed "the elbow" a series of tight curves in the river just past where the Fawn changes its course from a northeasterly direction to northwest.  Near the Fawn's Easternmost point the Pitticow River enters from the east carrying a substantial flow.


Want to share this KI Water Expedition photo gallery? Copy and paste this code.



To get the photo gallery below, please copy and paste this code in your website.

<embed type="application/x-shockwave-flash" src="" width="400" height="267" flashvars="" pluginspage=""></embed>

Wild Life: Aug. 31 Update from the KI Nation Paddlers


WILD LIFE – August 31 morning

Today was a wildlife bonanza.  There was a slight headwind which meant that our scent did not precede us down the river to warn shy animals of our approach.  

We started out the morning watching a Bald Eagle swoop down from a nearby tree.  Then we heard stacato honking that grew ever closer as two flocks of huge birds approached flying low over the river and passing directly above our heads.  These were not the common Canada Goose, they were rare Cranes.


Carbon Safe: Aug. 30 Update from the KI Nation Paddlers

KI's visionary decision to protect their watershed benefits the entire planet.  The boreal forests and wetlands of the KI watershed are part of the largest land based carbon storehouse on the planet.