2016 WO Member Update July 15, 2016

wo-logoThis e-Blast has been a long time coming.  Whitewater Ontario has been busy in the background and frankly the calendar got away on us.  Our new board has been occupied with meetings to improve the Ottawa Pumphouse, the Gull River, supporting events and river access, and the hiring of a new provincial Coach, in addition to our personal lives and paddling. 



A number of events have already taken place this spring including:

Three downriver races:


 1) Credit River Race on March 26,  2) Humber River Race on April 2 and the 3) Moira River Derby on April 17. 


Fun times were shared by all who braved the weather and cold water.


MACK Fest (Marmora Area Canoe and Kayak Festival)  Early spring brought early date to the festival but turn out was good and high water enjoyed by all. There were approximately 100 attendants!  Lots of prizes and fun had at Bunkers Friday and Saturday nights.  Big thanks to all the numerous sponsors and volunteers. Thanks to Manny Lawson (KWP) for organizing a successful MackFest.   


The 8th Hell or High Water event went off again this spring with great attendance. The organizer Phil Kompass, states they had a huge turnout with 450 competitors!  They raised $5500 and split the proceeds, donating to the Deep River & District Hospital + the WO River Advocacy Committee.  Well done Phil and the HOHW Team.   This has become a staple event in Ontario whitewater paddling.  Details on this year's race winners and next year's event can be found at www.hohw.ca.    Next Year's race is May 13, 2017.


WO had a group of athletes attend the Canadian National Slalom Team Trials in Rutherford, BC in May 21-22.  We were very pleased to see 2 of our own Ontario athletes meet the criteria for the Rio Olympics.  For a full list of the national team check out :  http://canoekayak.ca/michael-tayler-wins-all-four-mens-k1-runs-at-slalom-team-trials-2/


The Canadian Olympic Committee is proud to welcome:

Michael Tayler (K1) (Ottawa)

Cameron Smedley (C1)  (Dunrobin).

Check out this great clip featuring both of WO's Olympians!




The Andrew Westlake Memorial Race ran the Ottawa Pumphouse on June 25.  It was moved to Ottawa from Minden due to larger number of Ontario athletes competing internationally.  It was wonderful to see some of our veterans paddlers as well as young up and coming cadets and juniors tackle the course. Attached at the bottom of the newsletter is the official results list. Click this link for photos of the racers:  







MKC has held instructor certification courses this spring with the following results.

1.  17 lakewater kayak instructors
2.  15 L2I2 certifications
3.  4 L3I3 trained (also certified at L2I2)
4.  2 Learning Facilitators training and evaluation  LF L2I2  and LF L3I3.

Total participants are 34.



Freestyle had an amazing influx of paddlers and spectators for last year's World Championships on the Ottawa River.  It was one of the best world events yet.  The features of the Ottawa really showcase the sport and the athleticism of the athletes.

This season has seen the annual Stakeout on the Ottawa River.  Lots of paddlers from around the world come to the area chasing the big waves of the spring run off on the Ottawa and surrounding areas.
The annual Jimmy Cup squirt boat gathering is on the Ottawa River at McCoys on Saturday July 23, 2016.  It is a great opportunity for paddlers to try out this unique aspect of the sport.

On Sunday July 24, 2016 the Canoe Kayak Freestyle National Team Trials for Squirt Boat will also be at McCoys on the Ottawa.

Later in the summer many Ontario paddlers will be travelling to Valleyfield Quebec. The Canoe Kayak Freestyle National Team Trials is on August 6/7th, 2016.

More details as the freestyle season progresses in the next newsletter.



There has been some significant activity around securing public access takeout from the Ottawa River.  Lots of communication and a few meetings. We are thankful for the donation from HOHW and hope to have more details to share in the next e-newsletter.



King of the Clubs (KOC) will be happening on Sunday July 31st at the Ottawa River.  Clubs / Paddlers are encouraged to join this fun day of paddling and fun competition.  Open to all ages and abilities.  Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  for more information.


The MKC Slalom Race is coming soon!  August 10 from 9am-4pm.   It is held on Chalet rapid just down the hill from MKC itself.  This is a great opportunity to get away from the city and enjoy Barry's Bay area.  As you may know it is a friendly Class II with good targets to improve your precision paddling.   Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.

On August 13, the Pumphouse Slalom race will run at Fleet Street in downtown Ottawa. This offers the possibility to do some challenging ClassII river in an urban river and enjoy the city! 

Outside of Ontario, the Rio Olympics are only weeks away! The slalom canoeing will be taking place from August 7 to 11. Make sure to tune in order to watch  our two WO members Michael Tayler and Cameron Smedley. 



Anthony Colin (France) has been working as WO's​​Canoe Slalom Head coach since February 1. Anthony has been working with our high performance athletes, as well as coordinating a Junior Development program in the Ottawa area.  His position is financed through a 3-year partnership between Sport Ontario, Whitewater Ontario, and parents of development athletes.  


Anthony will spend all of July working with paddlers at the Pumphouse. He is working with the staff who running ORR's summer kayaking programs with the goal of recruiting potential paddlers into WO's development program. we hope to have him visit and connect with other WO clubs and have him work with young paddlers looking to improve their forward stroke, eddy turns, or maybe consider a fun race.


To see an interview from Anthony




The new summer student, Carley Duncan (Minden area), has started work at the Minden Wild Water Preserve. She has prepared the building, re-stocked the washrooms, and started work on campsites. Carley's role is that of MWWP Welcome Host, and Site Maintenance. Please say "Hi" to her to make her feel welcome.


The new MWWP Site Manager, David Humphrys (Huntsville), and VP, David Gillespie (Peterborough), are sharing some of the work to replace equipment and get logistics running smoother. At the moment, campfire wood in the shed is limited, so please bring what you need, and use appropriate small deadfall from the WO property. Any formal feedback can come through IM. or email to us.

We need your help - the Preserve upgrades come from Camper revenue. Please relay the campground is open. 



After 2 devastating floods on the Gull River, much of the work done in 1983 and 2002 has been moved and created numerous safety hazards.   David Gillespie and a few paddlers have been working on an MNR application to work in the Gull River.  

Last month, we met with Township Officials to get permission for river & trail work. It will take time. We also have the costing on major river work by Kernoghan's Construction. $40,000 to rebuild walls, clear eddies, and do some access steps at the Washout. The application to MNR has split it over 2-3 years. 


A Fix-the-Gull Fund has been started by a very generous benefactor and longtime paddler Victor Ettel (Halliburton).  The proposed details on Fix-the-Gull-River Project and Victor's donation to kick it off will be profiled in an subsequent announcement.   It is obvious that this will be a multi-year project and will require the help of all paddlers and groups who use the Gull River.  Stay tuned for announcements on this. 



Trent Severn Waterway has announced $270million in infrastructure improvements. A small group of paddlers and Whitewater Ontario reps met with T-S staff on April 4th.  We learned the Dam is on the list to be re-built as-is.  Stop-log design with water feeding over the top.  YAHHH.   Also we secured a walkway for boaters.  This includes the Horseshoe Lake Dam re-build is still on schedule for November 2016.




WO would like to welcome a new paddling club, the Red Hawks Paddling Club of Haliburton area.  

The club has been f

acilitated by longtime paddler and enthusiast Russ Duhaime.  

Other clubs have been facilitating local trips.  If you want to profile your club, send me an email.    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Thanks for your support and putting the word out the MWWP campground is undergoing the usual cleanup in recent days and is open.   We hope to see you at one of the WO supported events.  


In Service,

    Your Whitewater Ontario Executive 


Jim Tayler, David Gillespie, Scott Parker, Celeste Corkery, Alison Smedley, John Mason, Carolyn Pullen, Cale Reeder, Eric Betteridge, Jen Adams, Emmett Proulx, Kathleen Tayler, Erwin Ellen, David Humphrys, and Donna Boadway



Our two Olympians Michael Tayler and Cam Smedley 

IMG 2952-Mike  Cam Smedley


Olympian Michael Tayler giving some tips to beginning paddlers at the Pumphouse in Ottawa

IMG 2951 M Tayler Gives Tips


Andrew Westlake Memorial race results   : See pdf attachment below

MKC Slalom race information

MKC-Slalom race Info

Minden Wildwater Preserve






Horseshoe Lake Dam

Horseshoe Lake Dam - July 2016

Roger Parson's Centre

Roger Parsons Centre - Boatwerks-MWWP


Download this file (westlake 2016 results summary.pdf)2016 Andrew Westlake Race Results Summary[2016 Andrew Westlake Race Results Summary]111 kB

2016 Replacement of Horseshoe Lake Dam - Gull River


Preliminary Mtg @ Gull River-MWWP


On April 11 representatives from Parks Canada, Whitewater Ontario and the general paddling community met to discuss the Horseshoe Lake Dam. As many of you have heard, the dam is due for replacement.

There have been some concerns that the new design would not be ideal for paddlers, but those concerns were put to rest at the meeting.

Parks Canada will be replacing the dam, under the following conditions:

· Tentative construction dates are early August 2016 to February 2017

· Regular flows will continue during the construction,

· Access to the area immediately above and below the dam may be restricted during construction. Access to the rest of the river will not be affected.

The proposed dam will have the following characteristics:

· Same general design as the existing dam: top flow, with log stops. It will not be automated

· Same footprint/location as the current dam,

· A pedestrian crosswalk, separated from the log storage and working area, that will accommodate both paddlers and other users of the river.

Parks Canada has shown an obvious interest in accommodating the multiple user groups of this section of the Gull River. They are committed to open lines of communication during both the planning and construction phases of the dam replacement.

Construction is tentatively scheduled for August 2016

through Febuary, with site restoration and landscaping occurring in May 2017.

Whitewater Ontario is committed to keeping the paddling community informed and will publish information as quickly as possible to facilitate full enjoyment of the river.

In a nutshell, an important but outdated bit of infrastructure is getting replaced with minimal disruption to regular paddling on the Gull. Stay tuned for further updates.

- on behalf of Dave Gillespie, Thom Lambert, Dave Humphrys, and Victor Ettel.


WO Athlete Report-Natasha O'Connell

How are our Ontario slalom athletes enjoying paddling in Pau with their new coach Anthony ?


WO Athlete Report – Natasha O’Connell, France, March 2016

Natasha O'Connell being interviewed in Pau France


WO Event Report-HOHW 2016

Hell of High Water Event - May 14-15.2016

Video link to HOHW - Philip Kompass.   


For more information go to  www.hohw.ca

WO Update March 2016

WO Update March 2016

David Gillespie, WO Vice President being interviewed in Peterborough ON Canada


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