Happy Camper
Credit: Kevin Callan

It’s that time of the year again.

Outdoors shows and adventure travel symposiums are popping up everywhere. They’re gathering places for outdoor companies to show-off their latest and greatest gear, and people to wander past ShamWow demonstrations and taste samples of dried meats, all in hopes of getting enthused about heading back into the woods for another season.

I call them Star Trek Conventions for Canoeists. Except the attendees are wearing Tilley hats and various shades of camouflage rather than dressing up as Spock. I’ve been attending and speaking at the majority of them for close to 30 years. The camp gear has changed, but the people haven’t. They’re like-minded outdoorsy types walking around in a dreamlike state, just waiting for the ice to melt off the lakes. They’re a great bunch to hang around and chat with and I’m looking forward to another few months of presenting at them.

Here is my speaking tour schedule so far. Hope to see you at one of these shows:

Quiet Water Symposium (East Lansing, Michigan)

March 4 to 6


Canoecopia (Madison, Wisconsin)

March 11 to 13


Ottawa Outdoor Show

March 18 to 20


Trailhead Kingston

March 24


Durham Outdoors Club (Oshawa, Ontario)

March 29


Nova Craft (London, Ontario)

April 4


Adventure Guide (Kitchener, Ontario)

April 7


Mid-West Mountaineering Spring Expo (Minneapolis, Minnesota)

April 22 to 24


County of Brant Public Library (Paris, Ontario)

April 30


Maine Canoe Symposium (Bridgeton, Maine)

June 10 to 12


Watch the Video Here: