The Ethereal Beauty of Wood Buffalo

The Ethereal Beauty of Wood Buffalo

Dispatch by Paul Auerbach
Photos by Jimmy Martinello

We enjoyed a pretty near perfect night's sleep among the spruce trees overlooking a bend in the river. Delano worked his magic with an MSR stove and soon we were digging into eggs and sausages. While we were breaking camp Jimmy spotted a black bear ambling along the other side of the river, probably intrigued by all the noise and the smell of maple sausages.

We got out on the river under a flawless blue sky and paddled towards the Coupe river, everyone well fed and in good spirits. The boards are holding their own under the weight of our gear and so far the wind has only challenged us for brief periods. Pelicans soared overhead and bank beavers slapped their tails as they disappeared under the water just in front of us.

Wood Buffalo SUP 1
Another beautiful day for our SUP adventure  

Later in the day we saw eagles gliding up the river at the height of the tree tops, seemingly unbothered by our presence.

When we are quiet we are very much a part of the place, rather than visitors, and the stillness puts all of us at various times in reflective moods.

The fresh air, the breeze washing over us, and the sun that just keeps on shining, all seem to be contributing to a dreamy, ethereal feeling.  At times one of us will paddle ahead and then pause waiting in the river and just a bit overwhelmed by the space and the air and the beauty of Wood Buffalo. 

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