Sunset

Presentations / Slideshows

Narrator Garrett Conover

Share the northern experience with photographer and naturalist Garrett Conover. In summer travel the wilder reaches of Maine, Quebec, and Labrador by canoe, and in winter traverse these same hinterlands by snowshoe and toboggan. Each show illuminates not only high points of wilderness travel in remote areas, but weaves an environmental and cultural message as well. The techniques of comfortable travel and living skills are revealed as the narrative progresses, and the sweep of extraordinary landscapes unfold as the rewards of a multi–layered wilderness experience become clear. Garrett’s style is low key, often understated, yet clearly he is a teacher, raconteur, outdoor expert, and photographer rolled into one. Somehow each audience learns more than they ever imagined, all the while delighting in surprising bits of humor which surface along with great respect for the natural world, native peoples, and the heritage of the northern wilds.

Slide Lectures are $300 within Maine. The cost for lectures in distant areas is $300, plus accommodations, meals and travel.

Wildwater North : : Classic canoeing and snowshoeing Maine’s premier routes

A perennial favorite of most audiences as this show is annually evolving. As an exploration of the wildest remaining canoe trips in Maine, the path of the paddle is followed from an early spring run on the St. John River, through summer and fall trips on the West Branch of the Penobscot and the Allagash. Big Black RapidsMaine wildlands, wildlife, and glimpses of northwoods history are illuminated as well as the skills of canoeing, poling, and comfortable camp life. The show concludes with a few scenes from the other season — the winter trail provided by the same waterways, when canoes are replaced with snowshoes and toboggans.

 

A Winter Walk to Kuujjuaq : : Adventure show of our first major winter crossing of the Ungava region of Quebec

Reflects the Conover’s first major winter walk. Starting in the heartland territories of the Naskapi and Montagnais winter walk to KuujjuaqIndians near the height of land at the Labrador and Quebec border, this journey strikes off northward following a major watershed 350 miles across the Ungava region of Quebec. Some two months and many adventures later, the journey concludes at the Inuit town of Kuujjuaq near the shore of Ungava Bay. The route is an old one, used by natives for centuries; by Bastien McKenzie, a mail carrier and post manager for the Hudson Bay Company; and in 1918 was traversed in winter by Maude Watt the “Angel of Hudson’s Bay” who was undoubtedly the first white woman to see this grand land from the snowshoe trail. For sixty euphoric days the Conovers passed through this historic and stunning area, flirting briefly with the early symptoms of starvation as they made their way north with neither food drops nor outside support.

 

Ungava Winter : : Adventure show of a seven person two month winter trip on the De Pas and George Rivers of Quebec to Ungava Bay

The De Pas and the George River have long cast a siren spell upon northern canoeists. This same spell captured the imaginations of a merry band of snowshoers who eagerly succumbed to the lure of the long winter trail. Few can resist this jewel of Quebec which starts as a small headwater stream just north of Schefferville, and runs nearly 400 miles to Ungava Bay. Ungava WinterBy the time it empties into salt water it has grown to stupendous proportions after flowing through range after range of spectacular hills. Beginning in the middle of February snowshoes and toboggans stitched a line of tracks along the ice–clad highway of these rivers, following the ever–thinning fringe of trees that flank the river far into the barrens, reaching the Inuit town of Kangiqsualujjuaq in the middle of April. A fabulous joyful passage through a spectacular region during its least travelled season.

 

Silver Winter : : 25 year anniversary retracing of our first month-long snowshoe trips in the Maine woods featuring images from both sojourns

Twenty–five years earlier Alexandra and Garrett Conover spent their honeymoon snowshoeing from Greenville to Allagash Village in Maine. The following winter they made a loop of the route by returning to Greenville from Allagash Village. While the first two trips were conducted under the cover of obscurity, the 2005 and 2006 retracing were each a higher profile outreach program conducted on-line so the adventure could be shared with schools, organizations, and the public. moon and night sky with tentThe 2005 trip provided a fresh look at the Maine woods surrounding Moosehead Lake, the West and North Branches of the Penobscot, and the St. John River; a month long snowshoe and toboggan celebration of several conservation success stories; human powered traditional travel; and the beauty of the wilds in winter. Closing the loop took place in 2006 via the Allagash River, portions of the West Branch of the Penobscot, and Moosehead Lake. Silver winter likewise closes the loop with highlights of each of the month–long silver anniversary trips.

 

Of Maps and Dreams : : A group of canoeing luminaries on a little traveled Quebec and Labrador route — the trip that wouldn’t give an inch

The lure of an obscure route starting in Quebec and crossing the height of land into Labrador draws a group of northern canoeing luminaries together to find out what the maps don’t tell, to sharecanoe on rough water the pleasures of traveling with skilled peers, and the joys of good companionship. A mid–trip emergency and evacuation tighten the loop of friendship, leadership, dreams, and goals. All the while, our youngest member, on her first trip north reopens our eyes to bold newness as she rises gracefully to the demands of “the trip that wouldn’t give an inch”.

 

Softly Walk the Heroes : : Celebrates the spheres of influence that emerge, converge, and inform the joys and journeying of the wilderness trail

shadows of two people on the snowAccidents of history, writers, artists, misfits and mentors all have a hand in the braiding of the trail and wherever we may personally be along it. Ordinary event becomes extraordinary when the full mix of characters dances together. The collective reveals the spark, tinder, kindling, and solid fuel of passion, inspiration and a love of the places and people that guide the way. We’re all there somewhere, eager and optimistic; looking, learning; expecting something wonderful from our wayfaring.

 

Writers Workshop : : The Writer’s Paradox — Fact, Fiction, and Creativity

Using the award winning Kristin’s Wilderness as an example this presentation contains a fifteen minute introductory talk, fifteen minutes of illuminating inspirational slides, followed by a half hour for interactive discussion and following the leads of various questions. the writers paradoxOften includes a short reading as time permits. Very flexible in format and targeting of audience interests.