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Copyright © 1997
WILDS of Manitoba

2016 September 15


WILDS Of Manitoba

How to Paddle a Canoe in Manitoba
Paddling Courses & Instruction
Introductory, Intermediate, Advanced Tandem and Solo Canoe Courses
Canoe Rental


Canoe Course List

Canoe Course Descriptions

Canoe Instructor




All courses are taught by a Paddle Canada certified instructor.

For additional course details or for customized courses, contact the instructor; course dates are tentative.

All courses are tailored to the participants' needs, within the national standards set out by Paddle Canada.

Each course has a small number of students offering a high ratio of instructors to students. Personal instruction courses are available for a very reasonable fee.

An overview of the various Paddle Canada levels and clinics can be found below under the heading Course Descriptions. To register for a course, please contact the course instructor.






Introductory Canoe Courses
Dates Level Instructor
Contact Instructor  customized anytime Intro Tandem Donna Kurt





In this section you will find course and workshop descriptions, prerequisites and fees.

All courses described below are taught by instructors who are certified to and follow the national standards set out by Paddle Canada.

The instructors also offer workshops and clinics which are not official courses and come with no certification but do provide an opportunity to learn new skills or to sharpen existing skills.

Paddle Canada courses build on each other. To take higher level courses participants must have, or show that they have, all of the skills that are found in the lower level courses. If you have not attained certification in a Paddle Canada level but you feel you have the appropriate skills the instructor of the course may request that you be assessed prior to the course.

Entry into the course is at the instructor's discretion. Assessments can be done by the instructor at a mutually agreeable time and cost.

The minimum deposit for any course is $25.00 per person and must be paid directly to the instructor. Deposits are not refundable unless the course is cancelled by the instructor.

Times listed here are the minimum required time by Paddle Canada. Some courses may take longer or be resheduled due to weather and other environmental and personal conditions. If you are interested in one of these courses the time committment is the total of the two courses and the price will be double unless noted below. Students interested in these courses should realize that these courses are usually physically quite demanding. These prices include all discounts.

The Paddle Canada waiver forms will have to be fully completed and sent to the instructor prior to the course.



Note: Courses are taught with a variety of canoes (ultralight kevlar to heavier Royalex canoes), paddles (bentshaft, ottertails, squareblades, etc.), Personal Flotation Devices and rescue equipment so that the student can learn the advantages of the many differences and is even able to learn to lift and carry and transport canoes without injury. Beware of various internet web pages that promote inappropriate and dangerous canoe lifting techniques and portaging methods.



Customized programs done at the request of a group or organization.






Donna Kurt
email: paddler at mymts.net

Donna Kurt teaches canoe courses in North Winnipeg or in other locations as required.

Lake Water Canoe Introductory and Intermediate Instructor Trainer,
Lake Water Canoe Intermediate and Advanced Instructor
and Moving Water Canoe Intermediate
Wilderness First Aid

Donna Kurt paddling Bill Mason's cedar canvas prospector canoe on Meech Lake.
This is the canoe featured in Bill Mason's Waterwalker film
and books Path of the Paddle and Song of the Paddle.
Photo by Becky Mason, 1986.

Donna Kurt has been teaching Paddle Canada canoe courses in Manitoba since 1995. She has been learning canoe and instruction skills since 1986 from many distinguished paddlers such as Becky Mason, Paul Mason (both are children of the legendary canoeist Bill Mason), Mark Molina (American Canoeing Association), as well as many expert Paddle Canada (CRCA) certified canoe instructor trainers such as Glenn Buckmaster, Dean McLeod, Doug Gifford, Jarem Sawatsky, Peter Dowd, Brian Johnston and Steven Fletcher.

In addition to instructing hundreds of beginner and intermediate canoeists, Donna also coordinated and assisted instructing Moving Water courses with Brian Johnston for over 10 years.

Donna Kurt running Old Woman Falls, Manigotagan River.

Donna has led hundreds of flat water and white water canoe camping trips for the YM/YWCA Canoe Camping Club (Ottawa), Paddle Manitoba (formerly Manitoba Recreational Canoeing Association), Nature Manitoba (formerly Manitoba Naturalists Society) as well as private groups, averaging 1000 tripping km per year. She has paddled in most Canadian provinces, and in US and Australian waterways. Donna has coordinated and lead over 25 canoe trips to Nature Manitoba's Mantario Wilderness Education Centre on Thanksgiving weekends, and numerous other trips there for program weeks and work parties at other times of year.

Donna served on the Paddle Canada (formerly CRCA) National Program Development Committee to implement the former Paddle Canada Canoeing Program and has been trained in instructing paddlers with disabilities. She has extended this training to such endeavours as taking persons with disabilities on canoeing trips such as her nonagenarian mother (see link below), Clarence Tillenius, and friends with vision impairments.

Donna served 13 years on the board and executive of Paddle Manitoba (formerly Manitoba Recreational Canoeing Association) since 1988 as President, Past-President, Vice-President, Secretary, Newsletter Editor, Instruction Chair and as Social Convenor and is currently serving on the Paddle Manitoba Board as Secretary since March 2015. Donna also served on the board of Nature Manitoba (formerly Manitoba Naturalists Society) for several years in the 1990s. Both Paddle Manitoba and Nature Manitoba presented numerous awards to Donna for volunteer efforts.






Donna's YouTube Channel

Equipment Rental Contacts

Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC)
Wilderness Supply Company


Other Paddling Connections

Paddle Manitoba
Paddle Canada
Manitoba Pioneer Camp
Nature Manitoba
formerly Manitoba Naturalists Society
Mycelium Canoeing
Northern Soul
Wav Paddling
Wilderness Spirit Adventures


Links of Interest

Nonagenerian Canoeist
wo man i got agan
Wilds of Manitoba - Canoeing Trip Reports
Wilds of Manitoba - Safe Paddling
Wilds of Manitoba - Related Links
Canoe School 2015 Slalom Course Video on Youtube
Charles Burchill (a fine canoeist)
Environment Canada - Waterflow