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Big Canoe Lakewater Skipper Course - Pitt Lake

24junAll Day25Big Canoe Lakewater Skipper Course - Pitt Lake2 days

Event Details


(Big Canoe Leader – Paddle Canada)

Learning to lead a big canoe with a novice crew.

Duration: 2 days 

Content: Paddling in a straight line, turns, docking, with and without the help of your crew. Crew commands, and leading skills, rescues, big canoe safety, paddling with other big canoes, what to expect from novice paddlers, packing for a trip, trim and balance of a canoe, how to work together

Intent: To introduce big canoe paddling to those individuals who have a basic knowledge of paddling strokes. To gain knowledge and skill for the stern position in the big canoe and to gain the skills to lead novices in a big canoe on easy water (flat/lake water)

*Includes a workbook, skipper talk + manual.


  • Minimum age of 16 years or high level of fitness and maturity.
  • Must currently hold at minimum a Standard First Aid up to a Wilderness First Responder certificate, depending on where you plan to travel. It is the participants responsibility to ensure their First Aid certifications are of the appropriate skill level for their paddling destinations/journeys.  


Safety and Rescue

  • Carrying a big canoe
  • Environment hazards (water/ wind/waves/weather) when to get off! Hypothermia & hyperthermia (being prepared)
  • Group management
  • Transport Canada regulations
  • Safe canoe procedures and development of a float plan
  • Signals (multiple canoes): whistle/paddle
  • Canoe rescues
  • Communication devices

General Paddling Skills

  • Enter and exit a canoe: dock/shoreline
  • Paddling and commanding a crew


Paddling Strokes

  • Forward & reverse strokes
  • Check (stop)
  • Draw and pry (active and stationary)
  • Forward and reverse sweeps (stern only)
  • Low brace
  • Drop skeg
  • Optional strokes for the bow position: Draws and pry’s (active and stationary)



  • How to hold a paddle
  • Position and roles of crew
  • Commands for crew



  • Straight lines
  • Turns (wide and tight) (active and stationary strokes)
  • Pivots
  • Reverse paddling
  • Docking and shoreline
  • Changing paddler placement



  • Group management
  • Risk management
  • Paddling within your ability
  • Paddlesmart
  • Leave no trace principles
  • Where to go from here (paddle courses and resources)



June 24, 2023 - June 25, 2023 (All Day)(GMT-07:00)

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