Enduring Beauty: A Story of Hand-Made Canadian Paddles

The Fishell family has been around canoes all their lives. It began with their father Fred Fishell who attended summer camp in Ontario back in the late-forties and early-fifties. Since then whether it was the annual family summer canoe trip or tripping as a camper and eventually staff, a Fishell has been on the water canoeing every year for the past 75 years. The legacy has continued with his sons who have been attending one of Ontario’s premier canoeing camps for 22 years collectively. This same legacy has been true with paddle building. Fred carved his own paddles and passed that knowledge on to his sons. With the help of paddle maker Ray Kettlewell, that knowledge has been honed and improved, and passed on to Greg and Trevor. The vision of Fishell Paddles is to deliver the same quality, beauty and craftsmanship Ray strived for in every paddle he made.

The Fishell Vision

  • To provide harmony between the canoeist, the water and the environment around them.
  • To provide the highest level of craftsmanship making each paddle unique, resulting in pride of ownership.

Fishell Paddles offer a variety of custom paddles designed to meet the needs of all canoeists.

Our favorite here at Wilderness North:

The ‘Special’

The Special is a well-balanced all-purpose paddle designed for lake paddling and ideal for canoe tripping as a whole. The Special is more than just a beautiful paddle. It combines a well-proportioned blade with an appealing ratio between the blade and shaft lengths. Specials pair a shaft and blade of equal length. This results in a paddle with a longer then normal blade that is mechanically superior to other paddles. The long narrow blade which is 5″ at its maximum width is designed to reach deep into the water providing greater leverage and force. This design results in the paddler taking fewer strokes to equal the distance covered by a shorter blade paddle. The paddle pulls the canoe through the water rather than pulling water past the canoe
The Special is a great paddle for canoe tripping, lake paddling as well as paddling solo. The long blade provides a solo canoeist with greater reach and responsiveness. Although not for whitewater the Special is great for all other paddling needs.

For a chance to WIN your very own custom made, ‘Special’ Fishell Paddle click here!

To find out more about Fishell Paddles visit their website

To find a trip to take this beautiful paddle on visit Wilderness North’s Adventure offerings

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