TPZ061: Canoeing Labrador with Pete Marshall

Pete Marshall

Pete Marshall and Andrew Morris set out in June 2014 to recreate Mina Hubbard’s 1905 canoe expedition through Labrador in Canada. It was an adventure to both retrace the route and relive the experience of canoeing with vintage, handmade equipment. Pete is co-producing a film of the expedition called Labrador Passage and you can learn more at Pete previously appeared in episode 2 of The Pursuit Zone to tell the story of his 2012 Trans-Territorial Canoe Expedition . Pete Marshall, welcome back to the show.


  1. Derrick White says

    Hi Paul,

    Enjoy your podcasts and it was nice to see one so close to home. I am from the island of Newfoundland which, as a sister with Labrador makes up the Canadian province. The book by Dylan Wallace which Pete referenced but didn’t name is “Lure of the Labrador Wild.” It has been taught in Newfoundland and Labrador highs schools for decades, and not unlike Labrador, it is quite a lure itself.

    After rereading in 2011, I decided to plan and do an expectedly modest canoe-hiking trip into Hubbard Rock, the location where Leonidas did. It is about a 300 km return journey with 90km each way by boat and 60 by foot. I set our solo in my first attempt and was forced to turn back with 30 Km to go in 2012. In 2013 I set out with a friend, Chris Patey, and we did the trip in an out in 10 days, with 5.5 days to get there. The fastest previous time in was 8 days.

    As Peter indicated one difficulty lies in the impenetrably dense bush and underbrush along Labrador Rivers. The other is minimizing weight while being selfsustained. On our successful effort we minimized food and used ultralight equipment and we still had approximately 65lbs each on our back as we began the hiking portion. The remoteness requires gear redundancy and durability.

    Despite its challenges and arduousness, this part of North America offers much to those prepared to face it. We travelled past literally dozens of native camping sites, still undisturbed with last identifiable activity going back to the age of stone tools. It was pretty amazing.

    Hopefully, others will read the Lure book and find their way there. It is still wild, undisturbed and once you make 100km inland, you inevitably feel your smallness and isolation in such a endless and austere environment.


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