A great deal has already been written about canoeing legend, Bill Mason. I didn’t, however, feel this blog would be complete without some small tribute to the man who, through his films, taught myself and countless others to canoe. I discovered Bill Mason’s Path of the Paddle films in my early teens and I credit them with turning me into the proficient paddler I am today. Growing up in Ottawa in the 70’s, I was fortunate enough to meet Bill Mason, and hear him speak, on multiple occasions. Bill was generous with his time, his knowledge and his boundless enthusiasm for all things canoe related. He was often present at canoe related events in and around Ottawa.
Below I’ve included “Waterwalker”, the last film Bill Mason made for Canada’s National Film Board. This documentary film follows him on a journey into the Ontario wilderness and combines his passion for canoeing with his love of painting. The narration is by Bill, himself. He talks about the majesty of nature, his love of the canoe, his artwork, and his own sense of the land. Many of the scenes are breathtakingly beautiful. Music is by Canadian folk artist Bruce Cockburn.
For more background info on this film, visit the NFB.ca blog.