Canoeing the Gatineau River

09Ottawa is a mecca for enjoying nature and outdoor activities. Three rivers, the Ottawa RiverGatineau River, Rideau River and Rideau Canal are great for canoeing, kayaking, sailing and swimming.

Canoes can be rented or purchased at stores such as MEC, Paddle Shack or other local outfitters (2).  Or join a local outdoors club (2) and go hiking, skiing or canoeing with them. If you’re a beginner, the Ottawa River Canoe Club offers a one-day course, Recreational Canoeing Basics; Paddlesport will also be offering lessons in 2013, as well as the Ottawa Canoe Camping Club.

You can also walk, hike or bike along any of these rivers: see the Rideau Trail Association, Ottawa Capital Pathway and the village of Wakefield, Quebec, which is on the banks of the Gatineau River about 30 minutes north of Ottawa.

Please leave no trace while walking, canoeing or camping. And if you’d like to help protect  these great rivers, check out these local organizations: Ottawa Riverkeeper, Save the Gatineau, Rideau Valley Conservation Authority, Algonquin to Adirondacks and other local groups.

Continue reading “Canoeing the Gatineau River”

Green/environmentally-friendly Christmas gift ideas

christmas-gift-01Christmas is supposed to be a time of peace and togetherness. But all too often, greed, haste and superficiality are the hallmarks of the season.

Would you buy a gift if you knew it was made in a sweatshop or by slave labour? Or something made by a company that is clearcutting forests, poisoning  our water or causing climate change? What about a gift that could hurt your loved one’s health and happiness?  There are plenty of gifts that do all of the above, but disguised by deceptive marketing, shiny packaging and greenwash. Continue reading “Green/environmentally-friendly Christmas gift ideas”