Paddling Centre closing after 35 years ~ Squall Outdoor Store lives on!
Back in 1985 Kathy and I (Tim) were displaced teachers from BC and living on the shores of Cole Lake. We were teaching paddling in our spare time, and one summer day got the bright idea that maybe we ought to start up a paddling outfit of our own. With nary a business plan nor market forecast, we decided to just do it and our friends thought we were nuts. Our name comes from the late Stan Rogers song “White Squall”, a haunting ballad that captures the mystery and power of Georgian Bay.
Our vision was simple: to share our love of paddling, camping and the near wilderness of Georgian Bay with others. For over 34 years, paddlers of all ages have experienced the joy of paddling with the Squall in the 30,000 Islands – the largest freshwater island archipelago in the world. Our paddling grounds are part of the Georgian Bay Biosphere Reserve – a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to white pines, glacier smooth granite and the sparkling waters of Georgian Bay.
Now after 35 years we are closing the doors on our Paddling Centre. Those years went by in a heartbeat, and every part of what we did happened because of a dedicated, talented staff who were truly the ones that kept the ship sailing. This isn’t empty platitude, rather the gospel truth. We just wouldn’t have made it without all of them pitching in.
And now the White Squall Outdoor Store will keep going. We’ve kept back a few boats to play with cause it just doesn’t seem right to get rid of everything:) The future for the Squall will be quieter for sure, and having the occasional project will keep us busy enough. Thanks to all of you who supported us over a lifetime – without you we would have been a pretty lonely band of paddlers.
Outer Islands Project
The Outer Islands Project (OIP) is a stewardship initiative to maintain and restore well or overused campsites on offshore, Crown Land islands of Georgian Bay. Here’s Jordan installing a new ‘thunder box’ on one of the islands. OIP is a joint initiative in conjunction with other community partners. However, it’s not publicly funded, so we rely on lovers of the Bay to donate to the project. If you love the Bay, please help by donating to keep the islands in good shape so they can be enjoyed by all for generations to come!
We’re super proud of the White Squall staff family. We’re dedicated to developing first rate guides who are leaders in the field. The result is outstanding staff who bring a wide variety of life experiences to their leadership. Learn a little more about the faces of White Squall.