A Journey Through Time
To many people, it's a source of employment and promise for generations of Labradorians. But to one man, the Churchill River holds a century's worth of family history and heritage. Joe Goudie from Happy Valley-Goose Bay shared that history with a son and a grandson last fall. They loaded up canoes Goudie made himself. And then, joined by a few special friends. CBC reporter Tara McLean went with them.
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Life lessons from a lifestyle long gone. Joe Goudie wants his children and grandchildren to understand what life was like for trappers. Recently, He took some of them on a canoe trip down the Churchill River. Once they began their journey, Joe Goudie started sharing memories and stories of growing up in Labrador. Goudie shared some of those stories with Tara McLean while he lit his tent stove to prepare his evening meal.
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Canoeing through twelve-hundred feet of white water, laced with boulders, and a whirlpool is quite risky for the average paddler. And with a name like "The Devil's Hole" most people wouldn't even try. But Joe Goudie and his forefathers did it all the time when they trapped the Churchill River. Goudie's son Jason, and grandson, Greg McGrath-Goudie came to Labrador from Ontario to carry on the family tradition. They're in for a rough ride, and we're going with them on this windy day, in our series, "A Journey Through Time."
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It hasn't been used in 50 years, but parts of Horrace Goudie's trapping tilt still stands. It's a small cabin, hardly enough room to stand up. The roof is gone and the moss covered walls are rotting. Rusted coffee cans and stoves sit outside the tilt. The only use for this tilt now is to tell the tales of the men who used it.
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On the Go:
We're following former Labrador trapper Joe Goudie who comes from a long line of trappers, starting with his grandfather, Joe Blake in the turn of the last century. Joe's father was what locals called a, "The Height of Lander," which means he travelled from the Lake Melville area, up over Churchill Falls and into the northern interior of Labrador. Here's a conversation Tara McLean had with Goudie inside his Labrador tent about his family's history and the life of a trapper.
Former trapper Joe Goudie guided a group from all over Canada down the Churchill River to see his family's old trapline. The group included one of his sons, a grandson, other family members, and friends.They experienced everything from wild rushing rapids to hidden historic places. Angela Goudie and her brother Roy Hart from Toronto plus Bill Goodridge and Roger Jefford from Newfoundland were also on the trip. Tara McLean spoke with them about their journey.
We're retracing the footsteps and visiting one of those traplines with former trapper, Joe Goudie. He guided some family and friends down the river last Fall, to see his family's old tilts, and a trading post still visible today. CBC's Tara McLean accompanied the adventurous bunch. Here are some of their impressions of the river, and the Labrador trapper.