These kayakers are paddling 250 kilometres to raise money for disadvantaged kids in Montreal
MONTREAL -- A journey of more than 250 kilometres began with a single paddle on Thursday as a group of kayakers began a trek down the St. Lawrence River to raise money for charity.
“It's an endurance event, so everybody is going to have to go a little beyond their limit,” said Mathieu Fortier.
Fortier is the co-founder of Jeunes Musiciens du Monde, a Montreal-based program that helps teach music to 1,500 disadvantaged children. The four-day kayaking voyage is a means of fundraising for the organization.
Julie Branchaud, a first-time kayaker, said she was aware of the challenge ahead of her.
“We're going to be tired, paddling for four days,” she said. “We're going to have fun and basically, we're there for the kids.”
While the first stretch is made easier by going with the current, there are some tough waters ahead, particularly a stretch on Lac St-Pierre where the flow peters out.
“There's very little current, you can see the Laviolette Bridge far in the horizon, it doesn't grow bigger very fast,” said Fortier.
The kayakers will camp in public parks, though this year, some extreme heat poses a hazard.
“With the weather, we don't know if our bodies can support that,” said Branchaud.
It's the seventh year for the event and so far, the group has raised more than $300,000.