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Chikaming Open Lands Explores The Galien River Marsh Via Voyageur Canoe

Posted on September 17, 2014

Late last month Pat Underwood, a Naturalist with the County and Executive Director of Chikaming Open Lands Chris Thompson took two groups out paddling in a voyageur canoe at the New Buffalo marsh. The original french fur trading voyageur canoes, very much like this one, were the cargo buses of the Great Lakes, its circuitous rivers and marshes. The voyageurs, or “travelers” in french, carried loads of beaver pelts while we carried Chikaming Open Lands members out for fun and adventure! 

They paddled up to the new Galien River Park and if you have not been there yet, GO! There is a trail that leads through the tree canopy to a platform walk-out with some great views of the marsh. The platform is supported by guide wires so go on a windy day and also feel the platform sway! Kip Miller and other birders up on the platform recognized the voyageur canoe and took this wonderful picture of us! 

It was a lot of fun and we all received a full dose of sun and paddling with lots of good discussion about the flying and swimming critters and Chikaming Open Lands' restoration of the marsh for improved habitat. On the way back Riviera Homeowners on the west side of the marsh waved at at the boat acknowledging the annual return of the voyageur canoe and the nature loving Chikaming Open Lands passengers and crew!