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Modern-Day Explorer And Canoeist Finds Unmapped Waterfalls In Northern Quebec
July 31, 2013
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Exciting news for all the explorers out there: it turns out not every corner of this country has been completely mapped yet.

Adam Shoalts proved it when he came across a large waterfall that doesn't appear on any map while canoeing along the Again river in northern Quebec and Ontario.

Without warning, Shoalts found himself falling 12 metres (40 feet) into white water. The experience was surprising, to say the least, and it ruined his boat, the Guardian reports.


But it also got him excited about exploring other parts of the river. Over the course of his canoe trip, he found six other sets of falls.

"It's a pretty big deal that you still have unexplored territory in this day and age," Shoalts said. According to Shoalts' YouTube video description, he's "the first person in recorded history to explore the Again river."

He's planning on returning to the river to fully plot and measure the falls he found, with financial support from the Royal Canadian Geographic Society (RCGS).

The one-man return journey will be tough - there's nowhere for float planes to land on the Again river, so Shoalts will have to skirt the dangerous Kattawagami river (where a canoeist died in 2006), paddle upstream along a tributary of the Again, and carry his boat across the world's third-largest wetland.

The difficulty of reaching the river is one reason the falls haven't made it onto maps before. Old mapping techniques are another.

A lot of our knowledge of Canadian geography comes from aerial photographs taken in the 1960s, and they aren't necessarily comprehensive.

adam-shoalts-feature.jpg"There's still a lot of work left to be done," Shoalts said. "Canada's so vast. Even if I do this the rest of my life, all my work would still only be a drop in the bucket."

The Geological Survey is planning to add the falls Shoalts found on his trip to their maps once they have verified the findings with satellite imagery.

"Given the documentation of these waterfalls, we clearly still have gems to be revealed," Michael Schmidt, the vice-chair of the RCGS expedition committee, told the Guardian.

"Perhaps it's not to the magnitude of what explorers would have seen 150 years ago. [But] there is still much to be discovered."

Via The Guardian


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