I love the outdoors and especially our continent’s rivers so I am attempting to solo paddle North America’s three longest rivers: The Missouri (2013), the Mississippi (2016), and the Yukon (2017) Rivers.
The mission of the 3 Great Rivers Project is to inspire people across all demographics and ages, with a primary focus on women, to recognize their potential to confidently pursue dreams; to role model the method for achieving hard to reach goals, and to raise awareness and make real connections to the stewardship activities of organizations dedicated to the pursuit of healthy rivers, specifically in terms of the cultural, spiritual, historic and economic importance that the three great rivers of North America play in the lives of all people and most importantly Native Americans.
THE MISSOURI-(MISSISSIPPI RIVER SYSTEM) – LoveYourBigMuddy
In December of 2012 I graduated from the University of Missouri, in my mid-fifties, with a degree in education. The following April, 2013, I began a 7 1/2-month, 3,800-mile paddle down the Missouri-Mississippi River System, the world’s fourth longest. I am the first American and the first woman to accomplish this journey solo from source to sea.
My mission on the Missouri River involved empowerment, education, and environmental stewardship via the efforts of Missouri River Relief.
MISSISSIPPI RIVER MAGIC
On July 28, 2016, I completed a source-to-sea Mississippi River kayak journey. This paddle down the Mississippi River was an endurance expedition as I attempted to complete the 2300 miles, from Lake Itasca, MN, to the Gulf of Mexico, while on summer break between teaching school years, approximately 60-70 days. I made it in 65 days!
In 2017, while paddling the Yukon River solo source to sea beginning at the foot of Gwenellyn Glacier in Atlin Lake, I hope to increase awareness of the indigenous Gwich’in Nation’s mission to obtain permanent protection of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge’s Coastal Plains. The protection of this area from oil and gas drilling will sustain the delicate ecosystem of the centuries old Porcupine Caribou birthing and nursing habitat and, in doing so, preserve the heritage of the Gwich’in people. This area is also critical habitat for polar bears and hundreds of thousands of migrating birds.
I will be posting my adventures on this blog and on my expedition Facebook page, currently LoveYourBigMuddy Expedition. Please follow along and experience the historical, social, and ecological wonders of our continent’s most prominent rivers.
Hold on to your hats, we’ll be moving fast! 🙂
See You On The River (syotr)!