The Beginning of a Legacy

It’s been on my bucket list for ever. To be able to say I own my own canoe. I did own another one, but that’s a whole other entire blog post with my friends from What Were We Thinking.

It started last fall when I did some serious looking around for some different makes, models, and specifications that I wanted. I wanted a boat that was going to be fast enough that I could race in, but still usable for tripping and paddling with my kids.

I looked at everything from the over the top Savage River, Hand Crafted Canoes, H2O, Mad River, and others, but finally decided on Swift Canoes. I have paddled many a Swift Canoe before, from the Prospector to the Winisk, but settled on the Keewaydin 17.

Swift Keewayden 17

It’s a really slick boat. Recently redesigned by David Yost about 6 years ago and it’s only gotten better since. The finial decision on the details was when I went to the Swift booth at the Outdoor Adventure Show in February. I decided on all the specs that I wanted for MY canoe. I figure that I’m only going to be able to do this once, so I may as well go big or go home!

The Specs

  • 100% Carbon Fibre
  • Full Carbon Tech Package
  • Inside and Out Carbon Inegra
  • Carbon Seats
  • Carbon Kayak Style Foot Rests Front and Back
  • Carbon Yoke and Thwarts
  • Clear Gel Coat

In working with Scott, we set the entire thing up. Swift had it designed, built and delivered to their Gravenhurst Store for Pick-up in Less than 5 weeks!!! I couldn’t be happier.

The Pick-Up

I make my way up to Gravenhurst from Toronto on Sunday late morning. It was cold and windy. Oh and did I say snowing? I guess paddling it on the first open water I see was out of the question.

I pull into Swift, walk into the store and have a look around. It’s been ages since I had stopped in. The fellow behind the counter is finally free after looking after some other customers and asks me if I needed any help. I tell him I’m here to pick up my canoe. He says no problem. He asks my name to look it up in their system.

He finds the details, and starts reading it aloud to make sure he has the right one.

“17′ Keewaydin, carbon fibre, carbon everything, foot rests. OK, I gotta go find your boat it sounds like a sweet ride!” I feel like a little kid in line to meet Santa.

He comes back and get me and says he’s found it and for me to drive around and park close to the gate. I drive around and park. I walk in and I see him untying my canoe. He warns me not to hurt my back when I lift up the end while he gets the other.

As I lift the canoe I bang it on the rack above it as I was expecting it to be heavier than it was. “DOH!” in the wise words of Homer Simpson I yell. We pull it out and set it down. Here it is.


I’ve instantly fallen in love. I so gently get her ready to load up to bring her home.

New Canoe

Ok. No wise cracks about the big pool noodles. They totally rock when loading a canoe on a roof when you are by yourself. All loaded up, and ready to bring her home.

In the next blog post….

How I tricked out my ride.


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