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frequently
asked questions

A collection of frequently asked questions, if you complete this list and still have questions feel free to give us a call or shoot us an email! 

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  • Do I need experience to Canoe or Kayak?
    No you don't need experience, however being comfortable on the water and being able to swim is definitely advised
  • When can we paddle the Sturgeon River and Big Lake?
    The Season begins after the Lake and River have thawed in the Spring, certain parts thaw quicker than others every year and the conditions are always different. Follow us on social media for updates or subscribe to our newsletter for a pre-season booking notification!
  • Does the Sturgeon River have a strong current?
    Earlier in the Spring and after lots of rain the conditions can get quite fast.
  • Is Big Lake Deep?
    Parts of the Lake can be as deep as 4 metres.
  • Can I get to Big Lake from your Location?
    It depends on the conditions and the water height, some years its quite easy and other years you have to portage a few times before you get on the actual lake.
  • Can I paddle into downtown St. Albert?
    It depends on the conditions, earlier in the Spring this may be possible and if we get consistent rain that timeline is extended into the Summer. However you must be able to paddle back to Riel Recreation Park to drop off your rentals!
  • Can I come to your shop without booking beforehand?
    Please come to the shop only if you have made bookings beforehand. Confirmation emails will let you know where you need to be for each rental type.
  • Do you have public River access?
    We operate the business on Private Property, our River access point is exclusive to our customers. Riel Recreation Park is a public park where we share the River access point witht the people of St. Albert.
  • Can we bring our own boats to your river access point?
    Yes by booking only, please check our Rural River Route. Bring your own boat options will be available for the River Bus which leaves from Riel Recreation Park and drops off at our shop location.
  • Can children participate?
    Absolutely, 1 child under 12 can fit on a canoe along with two adults. A tandem kayak can hold 1 adult and 1 youth. People renting single adult kayaks must be at least 16 years old and accompanied by an adult.
  • Can we bring pets?
    Unfortunatley pets aren't allowed on the River Bus / Rural River Route. However small pets are welcome on Riel Recreation Park Rentals.
  • Can we bring food and drinks on the boat?
    Yes, please no nuts due to allergies! Although we thoroughly clean our equipment it would help to eliminate the risk of someone having a reaction completely. Please don't litter and bring a bag for your garbage.
  • What is the Cancellation Policy?
    All rentals have free cancellation if its 24 hours or more before your booking time, if you cancel less than 24 hours before your rental then there will be a $10 fee per boat.
  • Will a kayak fit inside my van?
    Spinter van - yes, most other vans - no. If your van/vehicle has a roof rack you can most likely get a kayak up there.
  • Can I put a boat on my roof without a roof rack?
    We also provide foam blocks for transport (at no extra cost) if you do not have a roof rack. Straps will have to go through the interior of the vehicle.
  • What is the max capacity of a Kayak & Canoe?
    Kayaks - 275 lb - 124.74 kg Canoe - 800 lb - 362.87 kg
  • How long is a Kayak & Canoe?
    Kayak - 10 feet / 120 inches Canoe - 14.6 feet / 179 inches - 15.5 feet / 187 inches

a few notes

A few things to keep in mind as we enjoy our waterways and help to preserve wildlife for generations to come.

Call 911 if someone is seriously injured or in danger while renting our equipment. 

Please Stay off of Private Property along all routes.

 Keep things secure to ensure no lost items  

Your Vehicles are safe however Lock Vehicles in The Parking Area and don't leave any valuable items

The Sturgeon River is a lot stronger than it looks and the current may catch some by surprise.

Big Lake can also get quite deep and cold especially early in the season 

All routes and the environment around them should be treated with respect

Big Lake and the surrounding wetlands are home to many different species of wildlife, Please no Littering!

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