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Canoeing with the Cree Paperback – Deluxe Edition, 2004

4.7 out of 5 stars 99 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Canoeing with the Cree is an all-time favorite of mine. -----Ann Bancroft, Arctic explorer
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 206 pages
  • Publisher: Borealis Books; 75 Anniversary Edition edition (2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0873515331
  • ISBN-13: 978-0873515337
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.7 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (99 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #52,592 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is a true adventure story written by a great American icon. It was 1930 and in their late teens, Eric Sevareid and his good friend Walter Port, embark on an amazing canoe journey through much of Minnesota and a remote region of Canada. The story takes you back to an era when life was simple but abundant; to a time when the north woods was truly a brutal frontier and men were really men. They fight mosquitoes, flies, boredom, mud, rain, cold, gigantic waves on Lake Winnepeg and being lost in areas where there is no chance of being saved. There is no modern technology. They are often times very much alone against the elements that had no mercy. As you read the book you cannot help visit the thought that these events actually happened, they really did this and they lived to tell about it. The people they encounter, towns they visit and, of course, the rivers and lakes they traverse are all generously given to people like me who toil at computers all day but shamelessly dream impossible dreams of living in a time and place that is now slipping into the oblivion of modern life.
I'm sure many critics would complain about the simplicity of Eric's writing and the lack of visual development in some segments. But take this book for what it is and just enjoy it. Makes a good gift, especially for Nintendo bound teenagers who need to see a bigger world.
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Format: Paperback
Walter Port and (Arnold) Eric Sevareid took an amazing trip that they started by skipping some of their high school finals so they could get the boat they could afford. Though the project appeared to have been Port's pet, it was Sevareid who came up with the way to fund it: writing about it for the Minneapolis Star. It was clear that once the project began both of them were truly enthralled by it and could not be put off. The tale is told simply, but with a clear affection for all of the people who helped them try to reach their goal, even though few of the people who helped were confident that these young men could make it or were even very encouraging.

The book is written from the journals that were kept along the trip. It is clear that this is a book of its times written by a man who was still quite young. While I would strongly encourage any teens to read this book to realize that they too can give themselves a goal that is worthwhile if only for being difficult, I would also encourage their parents to be ready to answer some questions about the wisdom and risks of such adventures and about some of the attitudes of the past. There is a casual acceptance of the bigotry against Native Americans that was common at the time and Sevareid was not yet the mature thoughtful man that we may remember from the CBS Evening News.

Still, the fact that a reasonably literate student was able to take, and appreciate, such a grand adventure while trying his best to bring it alive for us was a remarkable feat. Twain, at his best, gave us better feel for river adventure, but he had the advantage that he could embroider the story whenever necessary, while Sevareid was already writing and thinking as a journalist. This is a quick read that almost anyone, from a child in middle school to an adult whose days of imagined adventure are long past, can enjoy.
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By A Customer on December 3, 2000
Format: Paperback
A great book about the power of youth and inexperience. More about adventure than canoeing itself, Sevareid preserves through this amazing experience the intangible confidence (maybe brashness)of youth. Adult leaders of youth should read it. Teenagers who want to challenge anything unknown would be inspired by it.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"Eric Sevareid made his name as a CBS news correspondent. But at a young age, Sevareid experienced an adventure most only dream of. Sevareid detailed the journey in his book "Canoeing with the Cree". Now to mark the 75th anniversary of Sevareid's journey, two Minnesota men plan to make the same trip." Tim Post

In 1930 two young men paddled their way from Minneapolis to Hudson Bay in Canada. A trip of 2200 miles. Everyone told them it could not be done. Eric Sevareid, then a 17 year old, fresh graduate of high school, and his best buddy, Walter Port, planned the entire trip. They garnered financial support, collected supplies and a canoe and paddles and off they went. Five months later after trials and tribulations, they made it to Hudson Bay. Their journey is documented by Eric Sevareid, who gathered the weekly diaries he sent to their local Minneapolis paper, and in 1935, he wrote this book.

I stepped back in time to the 1930's when life seemed to be more innocent and the world a safer place to be. Sevareid who went on to become one of the most revered journalists of our time, wrote in an unpretentious manner, and we can feel the excitement of their adventures. They traversed unknown land and water. No one, it seems, had ever accomplished this trek. Even the best canoeists in the country failed. How then, did these two young lads accomplish this journey? Intelligence and good luck, I'd say. They questioned everyone they met, took upon themselves to digest all of the information and made decisions based on their best judgement. And, most of the time they were correct. They had no radio, no maps( this was uncharted country), little preserved food except for hardtack, but they had their ingenuity and the assistance of all of the people they met.
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