Choppy Waters


Old friends from university reunite to take a two-week canoe trip in the labyrinth of Lake Temagami, considered among the best and most challenging canoeing waterways in the world, but things don’t go as planned. Mental illness and extremism mar the trip that turns into a six-week journey, with the main character Redbeard fearing for his life and that of his border collie Schopenhauer. It is an odyssey of struggles and accomplishments that bring the old friends together in ways unforeseen, leaving them both changed for the rest of their lives.


Set in the beautiful surroundings of Lake Temagami, these two old friends endure the joys and hardships of a six-week canoeing journey that is lead and navigated by the veteran Charlie Boyle, who was once a canoe tripper at one of the world’s most famous canoe camps. Unbeknownst to Redbeard, his canoeing friend has hidden his criminal past and drug addiction as well as his mental illness, which come into play the deeper they travel to the outskirts of the far-reaching lake, days from civilization. As Charlie Boyle’s mental condition deteriorates, Redbeard and his dog Schopenhauer find themselves in danger. They struggle to endure a predicament that grows worse with each passing day until it is too late…

107 pages (47759 words)

Author’s note: A simple canoe trip that turns into an unexpected ordeal due to mental illness…

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