Sudbury

Backroads Bill on the Mattawa River

Backroads Bill Steer, the founder of the Canadian Ecology Centre in Mattawa, is no stranger to paddling wild rivers.

Some sections of portage route to river are just 30 cm wide, but over 3,000 years old, says Bill Steer

Backroads Bill Steer says the Mattawa River reflects the Canadian identity, and a good reflection of Canadian canoe culture. (Supplied by Bill Steer)

Backroads Bill Steer, the founder of the Canadian Ecology Centre in Mattawa, is no stranger to paddling wild rivers.

One river he considers "exceptional" is the Mattawa River, a 76 kilometre waterway between Trout Lake and Mattawa.

Steer told CBC's Morning North that in many ways, such as portaging, the river embodies Canadian history.

"You're really walking in the footsteps of Canadian legends," Steer said. "There's some portages that are 30 centimetres wide, 10 centimetres wide, but you've got 3,000 years of people walking in the same place."

"We talk about ecological footprints, but that's a historical footprint for sure….it's truly an exceptional cultural experience."

Backroads Bill welcomes author Roy MacGregor (Home Team: Father, Sons and Hockey, Screech Owls series, Globe and Mail columnist) at "Paddle and Prose" Saturday August 18 at the Canadian Ecology Centre. Tickets can be purchased here.

Click here to listen to the interview with Backroads Bill on CBC's Morning North.

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