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Yukon River Quest advising only most skilled, experienced paddlers participate

Board president and race marshall are foreseeing challenges to upcoming race given dicey waters

Only the most adept paddlers are being advised to take part in this month’s Yukon River Quest.

In a June 14 email update attributed to the board president, Deb Bartlette, and race marshall, Stephen Mooney, the Yukon River Quest is advising only paddlers with “significant skills and experience in fast-flowing water” participate in the 2022 race.

“Every team and each individual should self-assess whether they possess the required skills to compete this year,” the notice advises.

The notice cites several days of heavy rain leading to quickly rising waters in the mighty Yukon River and its tributaries.

The fast-flowing water can contain floating debris and so-called “sweepers” that can present problems for “even the skilled paddler,” reads the release.

The quest is slated to run from June 22 to 25.

Last year’s race was cancelled on the eve of the race due to rising water levels. The 2020 race was not held due to COVID-19.

The 715-kilometre trip runs from Whitehorse to Dawson City. According to the website, 119 teams with 249 paddlers had registered as of June 2.

READ MORE: Yukon River Quest launching with record paddlers

Contact Dana Hatherly at

Dana Hatherly

About the Author: Dana Hatherly

I’m the legislative reporter for the Yukon News.
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