About Dianne Whelan

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So far Dianne Whelan has created 61 blog entries.

The Animikii Trail. A tale of thunder, trust and healing

Animikii means thunderbird in Ojibwe. In their mythology they are eagles with supernatural power and strength who fight the underwater spirits. So it seemed a sign of good fortune that thunder shook the sky four of the seven days it took to paddle this 100km section. Most of those days were spent on the shore

An ending and a beginning. Beacons and ancient water trails

Lake Superior Water Trail. I arrived into Thunder Bay at 2:40am. There was no moon. No stars. But there was a fire. An ancient beacon lit by a friend so I could find my way.   After paddling 1000km and spending 105 days on the water and on the shore it feels like the water

Steak sandwich delivery, a hair cut & the help of strangers: Voyageur Trail part 2

Written by Ann Verrall It is now June and I am heading back to find Dee again on the trail - Lake Superior. But there are a few stories to share and people to thank from my last stint doing support for Dee on the trail back in February.  Here is part 2 of my


"Maybe everything we need to know we have forgotten, this journey is a search for lost wisdom." If I were  a hobbit who left the shire, the wizards on this journey are the wise grandmothers and grandfathers, the lakes are the dragons. This one is called Mishipeshu. The Ojibwa name for Lake Superior is Gichigami which

The Lake Superior water trail

After four  weeks of preparation which has included shipping all the winter gear to my cousin Derm in Winnipeg, finding maps, talking to local guides about the paddle route, filming and acquainting myself with the spirit of the largest fresh water lake in the world, and gathering all of the necessary gear for this long

The Voyageur Trail. From Blind River to Lake Superior

I learned at the very beginning of this journey in Newfoundland, the harder the rock, the kinder the people. And so it is in Northern Ontario. In these small towns, word still travels faster then internet and cell phones. Kind strangers come out of nowhere. The love finds you and feeds you pasta, plows a backroad

Laughing Water’s, a frontier tent & 31.7km of the Voyageur Trail

The Great Trail APP shows the route, km and elevation written by Ann Verrall The first section of Dianne’s journey on the Voyageur Trail passed through Mississauga First Nation territory. This relatively short distance is chalk full of contributions of knowledge, supplies, accommodations, meals and physical exertion. The beginning of a new section

Wise grandmothers, love and the bomb

I am now on the Voyageur trail in Northern Ontario and for the next three weeks my friend Jenica will be hiking it with me. My next blog post will be all about our adventure on the Voyageur trail.  But todays blog post is about two Grandmothers I have met in Ontario. The first grandmother is

Food Angels of Eden Mills, Ontario

Eden Mills is a bit off the trail but it is where my high school friend Barbara Walton lives with her partner Steve Bella. In September 2016 I was traveling with Dee during the Southern Ontario section so we had the support vehicle. We were fed beautiful organic meals, meet many Eden Mills folks at

Serpent River, tree spirits, winter solstice

  As I left Spanish, Ontario on the trail a few weeks ago, I traveled west towards Serpent River. As I turned a corner to follow the trail to the water, I passed an old graveyard and noticed many white nameless crosses. A few minutes later a large stone building caught my eye. From a