18 Jun 2022 - 25 Jun 2022

Milk River

After being stymied by external events for the last 2 years, I’m excited to be able to take my 6 year old daughter on an 8 day, 100 km paddle trip down the Milk River through the grasslands of Southern Alberta! The last time I paddled the Milk River was in 2013 and I am interested to see how the river has changed in the past decade.

Every year since our daughter Karina has been wee, Kyle and I try to take a multi-day trip on a Prairie river with our good friends Cheryl and Lorne. Fiery sunsets, the smell of sagebrush, and the songs of mourning doves and meadowlarks remind me of my childhood. It fills my heart with gratitude that I can share these places with my daughter.

Multiple back injuries and weather events (and a global pandemic) conspired against us for the past two years but this year we are determined to try again! The plan is to paddle from Aden Bridge 100km into the USA over a week. The last time I paddled the Milk River was in 2013. I’m so excited to share this special landscape with Karina, who is six this year, and to have the chance to reconnect with the prairie landscapes that nourish my soul.

I am also interested to see how the river has changed in almost a decade. Drought and increased demands on our water resources are making our prairie rivers sick. Over-allocation of water rights don’t allow for enough in-stream flow to ensure a healthy riparian ecosystem, and climate-change is putting even more pressure on these landscapes.

This is why I decided to use this year’s trip as a fundraiser for the Alberta Wilderness Association as one of their Adventures for Wilderness. They are working hard to make sure that these wild, wonderful places remain and one day Karina will be able to make this trip with her grandchildren.


Lindsey Wallis

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