Safety first!

Anyone who knows me knows I’m a big advocate of pfd’s… heck any safety measures depending on what you’re doing.  I even wear climbing gear when I climb certain trees 😊

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I know some people laugh at the idea and I guess to each their own, but admittedly I’m not very comfortable paddling with folks who refuse to wear them.  I don’t mean to sound judgemental by any means. I know my opinion isn’t shared by everyone. But this is my opinion and I have two reasons why I feel this way.

Firstly, I’m personally aware that anything can happen in an instant; when you least expect it.  Even on my last trip I was in still water before turning a corner and finding myself in water I wasn’t very comfortable in.

I spoke of this a few posts ago, but it’s worth repeating.  When I was 19 I fell out of a canoe and was whisked off in the current. I was pulled under briefly and managed to bang my head on a rock somehow.  I credit the pfd that I was wearing for pulling me up enough to get my head above the water and allowing me to grab a branch to hold until my friends were able to help me. I was pretty lucky that day. I was also the only one wearing a pfd.

Sometimes people aren’t as lucky. I can’t count the times that I hear of drownings where no pfd’s were worn. I actually wonder what the stats are for drownings where people are wearing a properly fitted pfd. Anyone know?

Pfd’s are so much fun you’ll just want to wear one all the time.  Especially if it fits perfect.  Alright maybe not all the time.

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Once I actually didn’t wear a pfd by accident.  I was taking a course and we had a big day ahead.  We were all packing up quickly and the guide was letting me have a turn paddling solo (❤).  He tossed some stuff into the canoe and ushered me off.  In my excitement I just went for it.  It wasn’t long before some others caught up.  I heard one of the guys holler out something like, “Wow you must be pretty comfortable paddling solo! ?”  I answered back that I was definitely enjoying myself and that’s when he asked if I’d forgotten anything. I glanced over to see him holding up my pfd.  Well duh.  Not a mistake I plan on repeating.  (But for real, paddling solo is ah-may-zing! !)  Not that I have a preference or anything.  Actually if I have a good partner and I get to sit in the front I don’t mind it at all…

I had a friend in high school who   drowned in Temagami. We weren’t close, but we hung out in the same circle of friends. And I always wondered about him and the circumstances surrounding his death. I don’t know the details. But I feel like anything that can be done to prevent that is worth doing. I do know that he’s missed. Someday I’d like to visit the area he was in… but that’s a thought for another day 😊

On that note, I hope everyone has a wonderful, safe, long weekend!

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