Our Mission and Vision

Black Feather’s Mission Statement is “To be Canada’s premier wilderness adventure company by providing adventurous, safe, environmentally friendly wilderness holidays for active individuals and small groups.”

Since 1972, Black Feather’s vision has been to offer sustainable, self-propelled trips by foot, canoe, sea kayak, ski and raft in unique wilderness locales. We work in a spirit of co-operation with our participants, local communities and suppliers. We are dedicated to exploring, interpreting and preserving our natural environment.

Why Choose Black Feather?



In over five decades of providing adventure travel holidays, we have paddled and hiked thousands of kilometres with countless satisfied customers. We welcome you to share an amazing wilderness holiday.



Black Feather’s guides are second to none. Handpicked, highly-experienced, and scrupulously-trained, they bring a wealth of skills and knowledge to each trip. The guide team is keen to make your wilderness holiday the best!


Destinations & Variety

We travel to the most outstanding wilderness destinations. We’ve explored the North’s remote areas and have chosen spectacular destinations of national and global significance. We have trips to satisfy every skill level and interest.


TICO Certified

We’ve got your back. Adventures at the edge of civilization can seem challenging. When you contact us, you are dealing with the people who run and guide your trip. As a registered Travel Industry Council of Ontario (TICO) agency, we provide additional protection that may not be available when booking with agencies based in other countries or provinces.

Our Story

Over the last 50 years, Black Feather adventurers have paddled wilderness rivers, hiked remote landscapes, and sea kayaked along pristine coastlines and through sparkling fjords.

We explore the most outstanding northern destinations, from the world famous Nahanni River, to a remote fjord in Greenland, to Ellesmere’s Muskox Way – just 500 miles from the North Pole. To ensure you enjoy your wilderness experiences to the fullest, we offer trips suitable for all skill levels to either help you prepare for a northern trip in the future, or to just enjoy it on its own!

Highly experienced guides bring a wealth of knowledge and skills to each trip. Our expedition gear is field tested and in some cases, custom designed for our rigorous standards.

Our meals are well known in the field … we literally wrote the book on wilderness cuisine: “Camp Cooking in the Wild – The Black Feather Guide to Eating Well in the Great Outdoors” .

Join us for your adventure of a lifetime!

Meet The Guides

The team of Black Feather guides is exceptional. Over 40 qualified guides work each season, and some have been guiding with Black Feather for over 20 years! We are now reaching our second generation of guides – the sons and daughters of the original founders and guides – who have now matured into guides themselves.

Stef McArdle

Stef MacDiarmid

I’ve been part of the Black Feather team since 2015, and since the birth of my son Will, expanded into a manager role, and now am owner and director of Black Feather with my husband and long-time Black Feather guide Ken! It has been an exciting and rewarding transition and I look forward to continuing the legacy that Wendy spent so many years nurturing and bringing to life.

River travel has been a staple of my adult life, and with Black Feather I have guided the majority of our canoeing offerings and love spending time with groups on the water. I particularly love the rivers of the Peel watershed in the Yukon territory, and the magic of sea kayaking on Georgian Bay, with warm water and endless sunsets. My journey into canoe tripping started on the lakes of Algonquin Park as a teenager and soon grew to include whitewater, with time spent rafting and kayaking internationally gaining more skills and experiencing more rivers. I love being outside, teaching and playing outdoors, and am a Paddle Canada and Canoe Kayak Canada instructor trainer for kayak and canoe, and a whitewater rescue instructor. When I’m not working with Black Feather, I might be ski patrolling at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort or working as an avalanche professional near my home in Golden, B.C., or playing with Will reading stories, chasing him at the park or teaching him about the beauty of the outdoors. Wherever I am, I’m pulled back to the mountains, lakes and rivers in this magnificent country we call home. I look forward to sharing these with you!

Ken MacDiarmid

Ken MacDiarmid

Working at Black Feather continues to be a dream come true for me, and even more so since moving from guide to owner and director, with my wife Stef. Since learning about the freedom of the wilderness as a young person at summer camp the outdoors has been my happy place. Guiding and instructing has allowed me to share that joy with a lot of people in many special places, and I am excited to continue that for many more years. There is not a Black Feather trip I have guided that I don’t want to repeat, and I look forward to sharing them with you! My favourite trip is any one I have not guided yet, and developing new destinations and programs is one of my dreams in the coming years. Hope to see you out on the land.


Wendy Grater

I’ve been guiding for Black Feather since 1984, when I joined the company as guide and partner.  Since then, I’ve paddled, hiked, kayaked, mountain biked and skied in the NWT, Yukon, Nunavut, B.C., Ontario, Quebec and Greenland. I was the owner and director of Black Feather until this past year, and now am working with Stef and Ken to help manage the company. This was a rewarding and multifaceted profession. I enjoyed the challenges and rewards of operating a wilderness adventure company, the amazing people that I met and continue to meet, both participants and guides, and the inspiring connection with the land!

A couple of my favourite trips are canoeing the Mountain River and sea kayaking in East Greenland because I love the combination of excellent paddling and fantastic day hiking opportunities. On trips, I really enjoy the chance to get to know all the participants, feel a sense of challenge and to share the fantastic wilderness environment.

In 2011, I was awarded the Northwest Territories Tourism Lifetime Achievement Award, for service and commitment to the tourism industry in Canada’s north.  In 2013, Black Feather was awarded both the Nunavut Tourism Business of the Year and Northwest Territories Tourism Operator of the Year.  I am honoured to be recognized and to introduce Canada’s wilderness to so many keen adventurers.

When not guiding or in the Black feather office, my interests are cross country and back country skiing, yoga and hiking with my dog. I look forward to meeting you and sharing an amazing outdoor adventure.


Molly Prendergast

Hi there, I’m Molly! I have been working with Black Feather as a guide, food packer and logistics & operations manager since 2010. I have guided kayak and canoe trips in Ontario, Quebec, all of Canada’s northern territories as well as Greenland.
Two of my favourite canoe trips are the Petawawa River in Algonquin Park and the Keele River in the North West Territories. I enjoy “The Pet” for its fun and consistent whitewater, and the Keele for its amazing braided streams and stunning mountainous scenery. Lately I have been proud to be able to guide extended sea kayaking expeditions in East Greenland.
In my free time, I enjoy doing yoga and spending as much time as I can exploring the areas around my home.

Pat Barrow

I have been travelling most of my life and have always been drawn to wild places. I am a strong believer in the benefits of wilderness travel and in particular enjoy understanding human relationships with nature through different cultural lenses. I’ve guided internationally for around 20 years and always enjoy the draw of ‘The North.’ I studied Anthropology and have a background in Outdoor Education, Tourism and Teaching. Originally from Australia, these days I’m based near Golden, BC, and have chosen to raise our young family, a few chickens, goats and an Australian cattle dog on a bush property. I look forward to sharing a wilderness trip with every team I head out with and benefit from every one! See you in the wilds!

Mimi Bastien

Hello fellow adventurers!

My name is Mimi and I have been guiding with Black Feather since 2008.  For almost a full decade, I worked on a full time basis as a guide in the summer seasons and now I am more on a contract basis.  When I am not guiding or camping I am probably working as a nurse; when I am not nursing, I am probably out playing with my dog; when I am not out playing with my dog I am probably sleeping or baking!

Looking forward to meeting you on the trail or river and making the trip about your goals!

Garret Boyd

Garret Boyd

My name is Garret, and I started guiding with Black Feather in 2006.  Since a young age, I have always felt most at home traveling and exploring wilderness environments.  I find joy in the simplicity, beauty, excitement and challenge of wilderness tripping.  I spend my winters guiding backcountry skiing throughout British Columbia and Japan. Summers are filled with guiding rivers and mountain hiking, with a variety of people, places and intentions.  When I have time away from guiding, I putter away at my off-grid homestead, growing food, spending time with my young family in my backyard near Golden BC.

Mathieu Boulanger-Messier

Bonjour tout le monde! I am Mathieu Boulanger-Messier. I am from the region of Montreal but now settled here at L’Anse-Saint-Jean, Quebec, where the vast boreal forest and the majestic Fjord of Saguenay attract me here. I have been working for Fjord en Kayak for about 10 years and am now one of the owners and director of operations. Even if I’m more on land these days managing my company, I’m sometimes back on the water as a partner guide with Black Feather for our sea kayaking trip along the enormous capes, mysterious creatures, and the vast expense of the Saguenay Fjord. During my off season, I spend as much time as I can with my family and I enjoy backcountry skiing in our backyard, because here, Saguenay region is well known for its legendary winters!


Maureen Bretz

I’ve had the privilege of guiding canoe and sea kayak trips for Black Feather for almost 2 decades. I’ve guided rivers and lakes in Ontario, Quebec, Northern BC, Nunavut, NWT and the Yukon.  My personal passion for the outdoors began early, camping on Georgian Bay. Competitive whitewater kayaking in my youth led me to explore many adventures on several continents  – hiking, cross country skiing, biking, canoeing, whitewater and sea kayaking. On trips you are likely to see me with a camera in hand, or on my hands and knees with a book, wondering and sharing about the local flora, fauna and geology of new landscapes.   My favourite things about guiding: watching the group become cohesive, teaching and learning new skills, rising to the occasion with challenges, and enjoying stories and good food around the campfire. When I’m  not guiding I love to putter in my garden, photograph, read,  hike, paddle, ski and dream of upcoming trips.

Adrick Brock

I grew up paddling in Ontario’s Madawaska Valley and have run rivers in Quebec, British Columbia, Yukon and the Northwest Territories. Back-country life is a perfect compliment and counterpoint to my life in Vancouver, where I work as a writer. I love playing hockey, trail running, whitewater canoeing and hiking in the alpine. Count on me to be up early, getting the fire started for that first pot of strong coffee.

Tegan Brock

Tegan Brock

Hello there! I have been part of the Black Feather family since 2012, and have had the opportunity to lead sea kayaking trips along Georgian Bay, and whitewater river trips in Ontario, Quebec, and the Northwest Territories. 
My earlier years have been filled with canoe trips in Algonquin Park and Temagami, and whitewater kayaking on the Madawaska River.  While on trip I enjoy sharing stories, learning from others, and experiencing each day as a unique opportunity for something new, as well as a time for reflection.  I have a B.Sc. degree in Environmental Science and a post-graduate diploma in Applied and Community-based Research, and am committed to expanding my understanding of land-use projects and policy in Canada. 
I adore baking, creating good food, and swimming in fresh water.  I am in perpetual awe of the Canadian wilderness and look forward to enjoying its wonders, beauty and challenges with you.

Ross Cameron

Hi there! I’m Ross and this will be my first year guiding with Black Feather. I am beyond excited to be a part of the team this year and have the pleasure of guiding some amazing trips this season. I grew up in Toronto and would try my best to get out of the city as much as I could to enjoy the wonderful wilderness Southern Ontario has to offer. I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to participate on many trips throughout Ontario, Quebec and Manitoba in my summers as a youth. For the past two summers I have guided trips throughout Ontario and have had such a blast doing it and look forward to guiding with Black Feather and all the amazing adventures to come!

John Carswell

In 2005 I became addicted to the Arctic. My first trip with Black Feather was the Auyuittuq Traverse and I’ve been going north ever since. Most of my trips have been hiking adventures including Baffin, Ellesmere, Axel Heiberg, Devon and Bylot Island with few Greenland kayaking trips thrown in for good measure. I do enjoy the simple life of a backpacker!!
I’ve completed many trips with Black Feather as a client and more recently as a Guide. It’s great to have both perspectives. 
I have a passion for the Arctic. The land, the wildlife and the human history all combine to make these Arctic trips special and extremely rewarding. I look forward to sharing these Arctic experiences with you.

Sophie Chalmers

Hi, I’m Sophie! I’ve had the pleasure of guiding for Back Feather since 2020. I grew up in Toronto, but living in the city hasn’t stopped me from getting a chance to nurture my love for the outdoors. For as long as I can remember I’ve spent my summers in a tent and on the water, which has led me down some pretty fun rivers. I’ve guided all over northern Ontario and Quebec, and am excited to continue exploring our beautiful country. Since working for Black Feather, I have developed a love for sea kayaking, too! The feeling of pure bliss when I’m breathing in the fresh scent of pine and listening to laughter around a campfire is like no other. On trips, I can usually be found with a camera in hand admiring the sights or stoking the fire and chopping veggies. When I’m not living in a tent, I spend my time studying health sciences and fine arts, fitting in time to paint, swim and read. My favourite part of guiding is sharing such incredible experiences with new people and watching our group bound through our shared experiences. I love getting a chance to connect with fellow lovers of the outdoors!


Sarah Creasor

I grew up on Georgian Bay and many of the surrounding lakes which led to my love for water. I became exposed to kayaking and canoeing at a young age and started guiding as an apprentice on Georgian Bay in the summer of 2010. I then started with Black Feather in the spring of 2015. One of my favourite parts about guiding is that each trip is so different because of the people you meet, and what they bring to the experience. When I’m not guiding in the summers I’ve been spending my time studying Chiropractic Medicine. In my spare time my other interests include: horse-back riding, nordic skiing and biking to name a few!

Matt Cuccaro

Matt Cuccaro

For all my life I have loved exploring the outdoors, especially by canoe. When I am not guiding for Black Feather I am teaching canoeing to anyone who will ask, working with the Algonquin College’s Outdoor Adventure Programs, guiding on the Ottawa River or teaching River Rescue to professional guides and emergency services across North America. In the winter months I coach alpine skiing and train ski instructors and coaches. I guide for Black Feather for the same reasons you go on trips; to explore great rivers and share my passions with others. I look forward to meeting you all soon!

Pat Eastment

After growing up on the east coast of Australia I have been drawn to the natural world. I followed my outdoor passions from childhood and studied a degree in Outdoor Education. Since then I have worked in the outdoor industry in Australia, and more recently, Canada. Throughout this time I’ve shared my passion through canoeing, whitewater kayaking, sea kayaking, rock climbing, hiking, and caving. I am especially drawn to river environments. I feel there is something inherently special about travelling on/with one of nature’s most powerful forces through incredible, often difficult to access landscapes. Much of my personal time has been spent rafting and kayaking on rivers across Australia, NZ, Nepal and Canada. I have succumbed to the draw of the big mountains and valleys of western Canada and am calling that home year round at the moment in between guiding seasons.


Margaret Fahey

Hi, I’m Margaret and I joined the Black Feather team in 2018. I first found my love of the canoe as a young pup at summer camp in Northern Ontario. Having spent my youth exploring lakes and rivers all over the Canadian Shield, I felt drawn to pursue an education and career that would keep me in the wilderness. I went to school for Adventure Tourism at Thompson Rivers University, and have since worked in varying guide roles in Ontario, Quebec, NWT, and British Columbia. I spend my winters in Revelstoke, BC as a pro ski patroller. I’m incredibly excited to be a part of the Black Feather family and look forward to many adventures in the spectacular Canadian North!

Jake Fell

My name is Jake, and this will be 9th season guiding for Black Feather. Since starting with Black Feather in 2015 I have been fortunate enough to guide trips in Ontario, Quebec, the Yukon, NWT and Nunavut. I am deeply passionate about exploring the most remote parts of Canada and when I am not guiding, I am white water kayaking, cross country skiing, hunting, fishing and exploring.

I love meeting new people and the social aspect of guiding is certainly something that keeps me passionate about this work. I have recently moved to Ottawa to start a career in consulting and now try to take as much of my vacation as possible guiding for Black Feather and doing personal canoe trips. Rivers hold a very special place in my heart and getting to share my excitement for canoe tripping is what keeps me coming back. Look forward to seeing you on the river this summer!

Kira Gangbar

Hi! I’m Kira. I first fell in love with the North in 2005 when I was lucky enough to paddle the Nahanni River with Black Feather as a guest. Shortly after that, I began as an apprentice guide and haven’t looked back since.  I worked with Black Feather for over a decade as a whitewater canoe guide, leading trips in the Yukon, NWT, Nunavut, Ontario, and Quebec, until I finally had to to put my guiding career on hold near the end of medical school and through residency. Now, working as an emergency physician with a fellowship in wilderness medicine, I’m thrilled to be joining the Black Feather team again and look forward to sharing adventures with you all in the spectacular Canadian North!

Marc Godbout

Hi, my name is Marc Godbout. I’ve always had a deep connection with rivers, using them as highways to numerous adventures – if not the adventure itself. I’ve been fortunate enough to paddle and guide in a wide variety of locations, a few of my favourites being the boarder of Central and Eastern Uganda, North Queensland, Australia, Patagonia and the North Shore of Quebec. I’ve been teaching canoeing and kayaking for 9 years and absolutely love sharing my experience and passing on my passion. While I may not be working in my field, my undergrad in biology pairs quite nicely with my love of the great outdoors.                 

When I’m not guiding, I spend most of my time being relatively transient bouncing from place to place with my van. I can usually be found enjoying one of my numerous other passions: ice/alpine climbing, ski touring, long distance running, paragliding, fly fishing, curled up with a good book or cooking a delicious meal over a fire.

I truly look forward to meeting you on the river and being a part of your next adventure in the beauty of our vast Canadian wilderness.

Gareth Hamilton

I’ve always loved spending time in the forest, sticking a paddle in the water or exploring on skis after the snow flies. I grew up in Manitoba, but my work as a guide has taken me to many parts of the BC coast, New Zealand, Ontario and Quebec. In the winter, you can find me working as a ski patroller and rental technician, or instructing for the Outdoor Adventure and Naturalist programs at Algonquin College. The best part of my job is taking people on the exact types of adventures that bring joy to my life!

Holly Hamilton

Throughout my life, I’ve been drawn to any activity that involves being outdoors or moving my body. My parents introduced my sister and me to camping and sent us to an overnight tripping camp, YMCA Camp Pine Crest. As a keen camper and 7-year staff-member, I found purpose, joy and meaningful relationships leading multi-week canoe trips for youth. I began working for Black Feather in the summer of 2021 and feel incredibly grateful to continue experiencing these gifts with new groups of people. I can’t wait to be together on the river!
A bit more about me overall: I love swimming in cool, fresh bodies of water, listening to other people talk or write about what makes them feel alive, and being connected to people and food through hunting, fishing and cooking. I pursued Kinesiology for a year, before switching to study an undergrad in Cognitive Science and Psychology at the University of Toronto. My most recent adventure as a high school teacher in Igloolik, Nunavut is showing me that my next academic direction will likely involve a mix of teaching and therapy. 

Colleen Hammond

I am Colleen and I have been guiding for Black feather for over a decade. I have paddled, hiked and kayaked in the NWT, Nunavut, B.C., Ontario, Quebec, and Greenland. Pond Inlet is one of my favorite trips … I love the narwhal and the serenity of the open landscapes. The Nahanni is another favorite with its amazing white water, day hikes, and stunning views. On trips I love the feeling of leaving everything behind and the opportunity to travel with the great people that Black Feather trips attract. In my spare time I love to paddle whitewater, back country ski, and pretty much do anything outside. During the year when the north is frozen I have worked for a variety of outdoor education programs, and now instruct at Thompson’s Rivers University.


Shayna Herr

Hi, I’m Shayna! I have been guiding with Black Feather since 2015. Growing up around the Georgian Bay area has developed my enormous passion for being outside and on the water. I have had the pleasure of guiding canoe trips in Southern Ontario and Quebec, sea kayaking on the Bay, as well as hiking through Nunavut and paddling the Nahanni. The North definitely grabbed my heart the moment I landed there. The vast landscape, mountains, cooking over the fire, and that smell of fresh air, all while enjoying good times with new friends – can’t beat it. I am super excited for this next summer of adventures and I look forward to sharing it with you!


Micheil Hill

Ullakut! I’m Mike and I’ve had the privilege of being a Black Feather hiking and canoe guide since 2010. My favourite Blackfeather trip is usually whichever one I have just completed! However, Auyuittuq National Park is a place I hope to keep returning to as often as I can. The landscape has a grandeur beauty that can be felt.  On trip I always enjoy the camaraderie on trail, the history and local flora and the “genius loci” or spirit of the place. In the off season, I spend the time winter camping, climbing and catching up on reading. I also try to remember to fit in my “other job” as a physiotherapist working in out-patient orthopaedics. I am really happy to part of the Black Feather team and look forward to seeing you on the trail someday soon.

Hornsveld Nic

Nic Hornsveld

Hello! My name is Nic, and I started working for Black Feather in 2016, guiding on the Nahanni River in Canada’s Northwest Territories. I was born in Ontario, where I discovered my passion for backcountry tripping and exploring river systems. I have been working in the outdoors for the last 10 years, exploring various countries, different parts of Canada, and my favourite, the Yukon and North West Territories. When I am not working, I am usually on a personal trip kayaking, canoeing, hiking, or packrafting. I also enjoy photography, drawing, and learning about the natural world around me.

Donald Innualak

Don is one of the longest-serving Black Feather guides in the North. He started washing dishes as a teenager, and has now served as our lead guide on our Floe Edge tours based out of Pond Inlet. Everyone gets excited when Don starts making his signature caribou and onions – if you’re nice to him he might even share some! Don is a great interpreter and loves sharing the stories from his time on the land and the ice.

Ella Kokelj

Hello! My name is Ella, and this is my first year with Black Feather. I grew up in Yellowknife, on the shores of the beautiful Tu Nedhe (Great Slave Lake). One of my favourite things about being on trip is having the opportunity to spend time on the land and share that experience with my fellow guides and clients. I am looking forward to spending the summer on the river, and sharing a trip with you!

Levi Komangapik

Levi has been guiding out of Pond Inlet for many years but is a newer addition to the Black Feather team. Levi and his son Keith have both been big helps on our Floe Edge expeditions. He is a snowmobile repair wizard and a seasoned hunter who enjoys being out on the land and ice. He learned about travelling on the land from his uncle and family from a young age and enjoys sharing that knowledge with our other guides and participants.


Olivier Lapointe

Hi! My name is Olivier Lapointe. Outdoor adventure has always been a important part of my life. I discovered my passion at a very young age while I was doing trips with my family around Canada. I’ve been paddling since my cousins took me on a canoe camping adventure in northern Quebec when I was eight. I fell in love with it. I participate in many other outdoor sports including mountain biking, trail running and cross country skiing. I am currently a student at University of Sherbrooke to become a physical education teacher to share my passion with other generations to come.

Claire Lunan

Hi there, I’m Claire! I started guiding with Black Feather in 2020 as an apprentice and have continued to grow my guiding knowledge throughout the past few years! I grew up in Southern Ontario and my love for canoeing and the outdoors began while attending a camp in Algonquin Park. I have had the opportunity to paddle in Temagami, Georgian Bay, Quebec and the Missinaibi in Northern Ontario. I am currently studying Anthropology and Indigneous Studies at the University of Ottawa and I hope to be able to apply this knowledge into guiding. I love canoe and kayak trips because of the outdoors, the cool people you meet and the amazing experiences you gain through exploring the natural world. I have learned so much about myself and others through paddling – there is something so special about it that is hard to describe! I also love skiing, swimming, music, painting, reading and anything I can do outdoors!

Doug MacGregor

Ask me how absorbently puffy a diaper gets when you jump out of a canoe into the Madawaska River. Yes, I’ve been playing in whitewater for that long. I grew up in the Ontario paddling town of Palmer Rapids, where my parents published Rapid and Paddling Magazine. After summer camp, at 13, I joined a Black Feather trip down the Broken Skull River, NWT, and I was hooked on the North. You may also find me useful as a safety kayaker when you fall out of your raft on the Ottawa River, or if you need to be shown around the mountains in Revelstoke, BC, where I’ve spent the last two winters selling skis and gear and finishing school. Life goals: Do cool stuff… with cool people.


Willa Mason

I live in Chelsea, Quebec, but I’ve grown up on the rivers – It’s the moments spent on the water with the paddling community that have shaped me the most. Since 2017, I have had the privilege of helping others to find that river magic for themselves through Black Feather. The Gatineau Park was the first patch of wilderness to catch my attention, and I’m now motivated by helping others to develop their own passion for the great outdoors.

When I’m not guiding, I’m either teaching whitewater canoeing skills courses, playing on steeper rivers, or occasionally at a desk, studying Social Communications in Ottawa. However, you’re more likely to find me roadtripping from one adventure to another, in my hatchback named Hank!

Be it a tripping canoe, a slalom racing canoe, a playboat, or a “steep creeker”, in a canoe is my favourite place to be.


Mitch McCambly

My name is Mitch McCambly and I’ve had the pleasure of working for Black Feather since 2016. I have been fortunate enough to turn my love for the outdoors into a career through guiding. After graduating with an undergraduate degree in outdoor education, I began guiding canoe trips for youth in the Alberta Rockies. I’ve worked as a guide on the Nahanni River since 2012, and was blown away by the breathtaking canyons and awe-inspiring landscape and instantly fell in love with the place.

My home when I am not on the river is in B.C., where in the winter I work as a cat skiing tail guide at Baldface Lodge. In my free time I enjoy whitewater canoeing, rock climbing, camping, fishing, hiking, snowboarding and spending as much time outside as I possibly can!

My favorite part of guiding is sharing incredible places and experiences with new people. Seeing the awe and inspiration that people take away from a trip constantly reminds me of why I am so passionate about the outdoors.

Camille McCluskey

I grew up in North Vancouver with the mountains to play in. It wasn’t until 2017 when I left my work as an airframe design engineer to hike the Pacific Crest Trail for six months that I decided to make the outdoors more than just my hobby. I completed a Master of Science, applying my mathematical background to the study of modelling community ecology, and spent the summers sharing my love of outdoors with the children at Camp Temagami and Alive Outdoors. I am currently wrapping up my outdoor and experiential education program at Queens, and this fall I start my teaching career at Saint Andrews College, teaching technological design and outdoor education. I joined the Black Feather guide team in 2020 and look forward to going back into the wilderness every summer. I can’t wait to meet you all, explore the land, and test our grit!

Jo (Jocelyn) Nadeau

Hi, I’m Jo (Jocelyn) Nadeau.

I first got introduced to the outdoors as a kid on our annual family fishing trips when my dad would systematically take us to the farthest and least easily accessible lakes North of Quebec City, year after year. Then came a summer out West after high school working the odd jobs in Banff and Lake Louise and discovering, in the process, our beautiful Rocky Mountains and all they have to offer. It didn’t take me long to head back West after I got my Bachelor of Education degree and settle in my haven: Jasper, Alberta.

I’ve been leading trips for the past 15 years as an ACMG hiking guide and as a high school teacher with a deep passion and commitment towards experiential outdoor education. I spend all of my free time playing in my incredible backyard hiking, running, biking, paddling, fishing, climbing, and skiing. I am a fully certified hiking guide (summer\winter) with the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides (ACMG), a member of the Interpretive Guides Association (IGA), an Advanced Adventure Medic\First Responder, and a retired 7-year veteran of the local fire brigade.

I love all kinds of adventures: classic canoeing circuits with family and friends, inspiring hiking trips with guests, solo mountaineering missions exploring new areas, climbing wild frozen waterfalls with a solid partner, and ski touring base camps and traverses with a motivated team. Looking forward to sharing time with some of you on your next Black Feather adventure.

Greg Nettleton

Hi I’m Greg, and I love being outside. As a child, family camping trips, scouts, and summer camp helped shape me and my love for the outdoors. I’ve worked as an outdoor educator, white water canoeing instructor, and guide for the past eight years. I also went to Brock University to study Outdoor Recreation and Leisure studies. In my spare time I love to go paddling as much as possible, skiing, fishing, and skipping rocks. I’ve been fortunate that my love of paddling and canoe tripping has taken me across Canada, the US, and New Zealand, and I’m super excited to share that love with others this summer. Note: Fun fact about Greg is that if you spell his name backwards it’s Gerg!

Mark Orzel

Mark Orzel

I’m Mark, and I recently retired as an educational professional with 33 years of experience teaching high school in Ontario. I also instruct Paddle Canada and O.R.C.K.A. Moving Water courses when not guiding. I’m passionate about life-long learning so endeavour to bring that to my work every day, particularly on the river.

One of my favourite things about being a guide is the camaraderie that is shared by a group; paddling and living together in the wilderness.

When I’m not working on the water, I love spending time with my wife, three children and my Australian Cattle Dog, Maeve. During the seasons of ice and snow, you can find me feeding my competitive nature through cross-country ski racing, or simply enjoying ripping some lines telemark style.

Hannah Pham

Hannah Pham

I’ve had the great pleasure of leading trips with Black Feather since 2014.  I’ve been on trips in Southern Ontario, Quebec and the North West Territories and have seen some spectacular places as a result. My favorite part about being on trip is spending time with new people and cooking on the open fire.  I’m best known for my obsession with dogs, which makes me grateful for the wildlife sightings I get to see on trip.  I’ve just become a licenced teacher in Ontario, and enjoy the interactions with the children. I live an active lifestyle, which fuels my love for many sports including hockey, skiing, running and swimming. When unoccupied by sports, studies or work, you will find me curled up in front of Netflix likely eating something unhealthy.

Graham Pressick

I grew up in Courtice, Ontario but was fortunate to spend most weekends and summers at my family’s cottage near Bon Echo Provincial Park. My passion for canoe tripping started when my parents signed me up for a 2-week trip down the Spanish River with a YMCA summer camp. After this trip, I was hooked, and continued attending and eventually leading trips for the same camp over the next decade. I started guiding with Black Feather in the spring of 2021 and am really excited to be a part of such a strong community. My favourite parts of guiding are catching and cooking a shore lunch of fresh fish and the genuine bonds that form through shared experiences. Outside of guiding, I studied Biology in my undergrad at Queen’s and then took a few years off to work and travel before returning to school for Teacher’s College in the fall of 2019. Since graduating, I have moved to the community of Igloolik, Nunavut where I am teaching grade 6. In my free time I enjoy staying active on the land by fishing, hunting, cross country skiing, and paddling.

Sarah Rab

Hi my name is Sarah and I have been working for Black Feather since 2020. I am from Ottawa, Ontario which has definitely fuelled my passion for the outdoors and given me the incredible opportunity to learn to paddle, hike, ski and more. This passion for the outdoors has been paired with a love of nature and a great curiosity for earth and environmental science. I am currently working towards a co-op degree in Environmental Science at the University of Waterloo. When I am not studying or working I love nordic skiing, paddling, reading and cooking or baking to name a few. I am so excited to enter a new season with Black Feather and look forward to getting to know lots of incredible people. I am excited to share some amazing new adventures!


Kurtis Randall

Hello. I have been working with Black Feather canoeing and sea kayaking across Canada during the summers since 2006. My favorite river is the Bloodvein River in Manitoba for its exciting whitewater, beautiful Canadian shield landscape, warm water and mosquitoes… though, I spend most of my time on northern rivers. I am a Paddle Canada advanced moving water instructor of both solo and tandem canoes and enjoy sharing my knowledge of white water paddling with others, as well as improving my own skills. Besides summer work with Black Feather, I spend my winters skiing, travelling or working as a sea kayak guide in Antarctica. I graduated university with a bachelor of science in geology at Laurentian university, and this has proven useful time and again looking at the natural world while on trips. The most exciting thing I’ve done recently is visit the roof of the world in Nepal. I look forward to meeting you on a river!


Caleb Roberts

I am grateful to be part of the Black Feather family and have been guiding on Northern and Southern rivers, and enjoying trips for many years. Having grown up in the woods of southern Ontario, I love all things outdoors and started my guiding career with a local camp in Ontario and Quebec. When I am not paddling (which is not often), I am behind my camera, operating my drone or putting together exciting paddling videos. I also love experimenting with delicious camp meals and brewing delicious camp coffee. I am super excited for the next guiding season and all the adventures that will come with it.

Robbi Sangoya

Robbi was born and raised in Pond Inlet, Nunavut, and is an active hunter who spends much of his time on the land and ice with his family. He has been guiding on the Floe Edge with Black Feather for many seasons. He is amazing at fixing anything we manage to break, and has a great sense of humour, always ready for a good laugh even at the toughest times.


Colin Smith

Hi! My name is Colin and I’ve been guiding with Black Feather since 2007. I’ve enjoyed guiding canoe trips in the Yukon, NWT, Nunavut and Ontario/Quebec. When not guiding for Black Feather, I also work as an Ice Rescue Instructor. I can usually be found in Ontario, enjoying the lakes, rivers and snow, although this winter I will be spending time up in the Yukon. The North is in my soul and I always feel very privileged to work there with the land and the people. I look forward to sharing your next adventure with you and helping to add a Black Feather in your cap!


Candice Stuart

Hi! I’m Candice and I have had the privilege of and have enjoyed guiding Black Feather trips since 2011.  My guiding career has taken me to many places across Ontario, Quebec, Labrador, Arctic Canada and Greenland, the latter two places of which I am extremely excited and passionate about.  Doing both research and guiding (hiking and paddling) in remote northern regions has offered me stunning wildlife viewing opportunities, the ability to view climate change first hand and the enjoyment 24-hours of daylight can bring!  Some of my best Black Feather moments have been spent trying to find the words to describe the sheer beauty and magnitude of these places which most often defy words.  What I love most about guiding is sharing these moments, vistas, histories, geographical significance, stories and laughs with the people who come on trip.  My “pay-the-bills” job is teaching science, physical geography and outdoor education to high school students within the public system; my hope is that I am nurturing a love and passion within our young adults for the environment and Canada’s remote, rugged and wild places.  My personal interests involve the outdoors and protecting our wild places.  Beyond the great outdoors, I also enjoy reading, cooking, my puppy (an Inuit Sled dog), running and cycling.

Dana Sykora

Dana Sykora

Hello! My name is Dana, and I started working for Black Feather in 2015, guiding trips down the amazing and awe-inspiring Nahanni River in Canada’s Northwest Territories. Growing up in Ontario, I was raised on and in the water, and canoeing has been one of my passions for as long as I can remember. That, coupled with an undying love for sleeping outside under the stars has led me here, guiding and teaching Outdoor Education as a career; and I feel so lucky to wake up each day and do what I do. When I’m not in the field or paddling, I also love reading, writing, travelling to the far reaches of the earth and rock climbing…but through it all, no matter what, the water will always my favorite place to be.

Marcie Trenholm

I am extremely excited and honoured to be guiding for Black Feather this season. Water has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember, however, it wasn’t until after high school where I began considering making a career out of my love for the outdoors. I began guiding multi day kayak tours on the beautiful shorelines of western Canada in 2008 and spent my winter months working in the mountain around Golden, B.C., where I now call home. I have been raft guiding on the Kicking Horse River (class IV) for over a decade now, and ski patrolling at Kicking Horse Mountain Resort in the winter months. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to experience new adventures and create new friendships – see you on the water!

Lauren Turcot

Hi! My name is Lauren. I grew up in Canmore, Alberta and am currently nomadic in the mountains and rivers of British Columbia. My love for all things outdoors began at an early age and has been the main theme in my life both personally and professionally. I have been working on rivers and oceans in a variety of crafts for the last 7 years in BC, Alberta and New Zealand. It brings me so much joy to be able to work in such incredible environments with the even more incredible community it attracts. I’m looking forwards to this summer and hope you are too!

Keith Watson

Although a newer member of the Black Feather team, I bring over 25 years of whitewater canoeing experience with me.  Whether tripping, creeking, play boating, slalom racing, or teaching, I have always been at home on the water and have a strong passion for exploring the wilderness.  I look forward to new outdoor adventures, and to sharing my knowledge, experience and love of paddling with others. When not on the river, I spend my time with my family including two miniature schnauzers, Eddy and Quinn and creating custom wood and epoxy tables and other pieces in my home studio.

Dave Weir

Dave Weir

I began my guiding career straight out of high school in 1987 at Strathcona Park Lodge on Vancouver Island by graduating from the Canadian Outdoor Leadership Training Program. Since then I have guided and instructed for a number of organizations, including the National Outdoor Leadership School, Ecomarine Coastal Kayaking School, Whitney & Smith Legendary Expeditions, Explorers Corner and Black Feather. I have been privileged to guide in many locations, including much of the British Columbia and Alaska Coast, the Sea of Cortez and even Patagonia. It was when I first guided in the Arctic in 1999, that I knew I was home.
In the Arctic, I have guided in Northwest Greenland, Baffin and Bylot Islands, Banks Island, on the mainland Arctic Coast and extensively on Ellesmere Island. I have guided on land, sea, river and ice. Outside of work, my adventures have included high altitude mountaineering expeditions, long route rock climbing, bike touring, white water canoeing and kayaking and many, many miles shouldering a backpack.  Over the years, I have earned a reputation for careful, considered judgement and decision making. I have been extensively involved in training new guides and I am a founding member of the Association of Canadian Sea Kayak Guides.


Jamie Whiteside

The best times in my life have been outdoors and on big adventures. From a solid year of hiking, biking and traveling around New Zealand and Australia when I was 17, to canoe, kayak and ski adventures with friends, or leading expeditions and guiding in the high Arctic,  Patagonia and the Himalaya’s, my life has been full of rich experiences with great people in special places. I am a Paddle Canada moving water instructor (and instructor trainer), an ACMG ski mountaineering and hiking guide, and have a master’s degree in leadership and training from Royal Roads University. While I can and do enjoy the comforts of home in Golden, BC, puttering in my garden, and the nice lodge where I work as a Heli ski guide in the winter (with my own comfy bed!), I seem to spend as many nights around a campfire or cook stove, tent and sleeping mat in some wild location around the globe. I still get back to my Alberta ranch country roots, and love to pull out my guitar for a little Folk music when I can. I look forward to meeting you out on trip!

Sustainability Initiatives

At Black Feather, we recognize the importance of addressing our environmental impact. We have taken steps to reduce the carbon emissions footprint of our business by choosing green electricity for our headquarters and packing facility in Ontario with Bullfrog Power. We are also part of two Eco-Tourism Initiatives through Green Tourism and Sustainable Tourism Canada in which we hold “silver” certifications.

We are also a proud member of the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society’s (CPAWS) NWT Chapter, where we contribute to the Nahanni River Fund, an integral part of ensuring our Nahanni River trips are able to operate in a sustainable manner.


We have been honoured to receive the following awards:


We are also pleased to be partnered with the following organizations & programs: