The Madawaska River is justifiably celebrated as one of the best places in North America to learn whitewater paddling.
Flowing through a forest of pines and hardwoods, the river’s supply of dam-controlled water is warm, clean, and dependable all summer long.
This 5km section of drop-pool whitewater locally is known as Bells Rapids, or to paddlers as the 'Middle Mad(awaska)'.
Browse trips run by our local travel partners
Claudia is a 10-time Canadian National Whitewater Kayaking champion and was the bronze medalist in the World Championships in 1982. She is passionate about the sport and has conveyed that when broadcasting as an analyst for CBC Television's coverage or the kayak/canoe slalom events at several Olympic Games.
Her profile picture was taken in 2015 and shows her as part of the relay...
This is a thrilling experience. Seeing the rocks glide underneath the raft, the shoreline whizzing by, and getting splashed by friendly waves.
Told to put your feet first, and arms stretched out to your side you feel like a giant starfish bobby through the ripples as you approach the breaking wave called ‘Claudia’. Named after the founder’s daughter, a place she played in her kayak at a young age then going on to win national and international titles. Now you get to be fully immersed in the recirculating waters and feel the sheer joy of nature’s forces.
Sitting in the driver’s seat, or raft guides steering position at the back of the raft - rowing looks easier than it is.
You'll make so much progress in a week that by the end of it you'll have the skills to plan your own river trip by canoe.
Seeing the historical remnants of the Log Drive is a must-do activity.
Best times to go:
Our season runs from May to end August, but the best months are July and August when waters are warm, there are no bugs, and it doesn’t matter if you are camping or staying in our rustic Cabanas – the weather is perfect for a paddling vacation.
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