In 2012, my wife, myself and our dog left on a two month canoe trip on the path of the Voyageur (fur trade) and Perseverance, in search of adventure, freedom, and history. On June 11th, we were standing with all of our gear, on the expansive shores Lake Superior ready for adventure.

All we had was a small camera, VHF, a solar panel, a GPS … and our inReach SE. We did not have a website, Facebook page or a computer. The only thing keeping us in touch with friends and family was that tiny 2-way satellite communicator, capable of great things. For two months, we used our inReach device paired with a smartphone, to communicate and to share our adventures with people back home, and the many nice people we met along the way. At the beginning of our trip, we only had a few dozen friends and relatives who knew about our expedition. At the end, we had hundreds of people visiting our Mapshare and talking about our journey.

Two years later, we are starting a new, more complex adventure – the NorAm Odyssey covering 13 times the distance we did on our last canoe trip. We now have a Facebook and a Twitter account, a website, and more professional gear, but we are using the same inReach device that let us connect with our followers the last time. We wouldn’t even think of leaving without our inReach.

Embarking on a 2½ year expedition, we want to stay connected and interact with people. We have to have something trustworthy and in line with our goals. inReach gives us a reliable connection, even when we are far from civilization and want to share our adventure with others and feel their closeness. We want to make this expedition as personal as it can be and share our story. inReach makes our followers feel that they are part of our trip, they even like to guess where we are going to be based on the data they get from Mapshare!

NorAm Odyssey is a long distance paddling expedition which will take us to urban, rural and remote areas of Canada and the United States. To make this happen, we sold our home, our cars and all of our goods that are not essential to our trip. We left the security provided by our jobs and our home to live fully, without constraint. The goal is to live to the fullest, seize opportunities and continue on the path of exploring who we are as individuals, as a team, as a couple. It is an odd feeling to live only with what we have (which is not much) and knowing that there is nothing out there pressuring us to come back — ever. That feeling is called freedom.

We read a quote written by the Dalai Lama; I will try my best to translate it.

“Humankind loses his health to make money and then he loses his money to recover his health. He thinks of the future, to a point where he forgets the present, such that, he lives neither in the present nor in the future. Finally, he lives as if he would never die and die as if he had never lived.”

Dalai Lama

We are now modern-day adventurers. We’ve chosen a new life that we cherish and enjoy every day. With our inReach device, we can share all aspects of our journey, wherever we are. Every day will be as new as the previous one and will be an adventure of its own.

To follow us, please visit our website: www.wildravenadventure.com

Twitter: @WildRavenAdvent Facebook: WildRavenAdventure

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About Pierre Pépin

Pierre’s professional and personal resumes are filled with different experiences from varied activities. He has been a professional in Outdoor Leadership for over 30 years (specializing in water sports and high mountains) and has directed and led several major expeditions in different parts of the world. He was also a member of the Canadian Forces and coached Biathlon for nearly 20 years, ran a successful Outdoor leadership school and had a pilot and paramedic license.

About Jennifer Gosselin

Jennifer has been the operations manager for a major Canadian company for several years. At age 19, she went to live and travel for a year in Australia and to become immersed in the English language. Upon her return, she studied Adventure Tourism, Ecotourism, and Management. Her leadership skills, combined with determination, are two of her main strengths.