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Paddling the Northern Forest Canoe Trail

June 29, 2023 @ 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

Peter Macfarlane, musician, teacher, canoeist, and canoe builder, will present his experience of canoeing the Northern Forest Canoe Trail (NFCT).

Recently back from another solo canoe trip in a vessel he both designed and built, Addison resident, Peter Macfarlane, will be recounting his first through-paddle of the Northern Forest Canoe Trail ten years ago at the Bixby Library in Vergennes.

Each of his long treks has been marked by some spectacular paddling and punctuated by severe challenges. His most recent trip, a circuit on the Androscoggin, Kennebec, and Dead Rivers in Maine and New Hampshire, took him along the route used by Benedict Arnold in his march on Québec in the fall of 1775. A navigational error at the Great Carrying Place, an eleven-mile portage between the Kennebec River and Flagstaff Lake, led to this year’s challenge, effectively rock-climbing with a canoe! On his second through-paddle of the Northern Forest Canoe Trail in 2018, he set himself the challenge of far more upstream than downstream paddling, and the wind joined in the fun of opposing his motion. There was also a navigational error leading to a portage that yielded more of a story than would have been ideal.

To find out the challenges and delights of his first long solo trip, to learn what it takes to plan and execute a 750-mile canoe journey, and to enjoy this journey vicariously, come to hear his talk at 6 pm.

This presentation is made possible thanks to a CVNHP grant to celebrate our five towns’ Interconnected Waterways throughout the summer and into the fall.


June 29, 2023
6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
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Bixby Memorial Free Library
258 Main St
Vergennes, VT 05491
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