PK Podcast 002: Ray Goodwin On Wilderness Canoeing

PK Podcast 002: Ray Goodwin On Wilderness Canoeing

Ray Goodwin in the stern of a boat with a bow paddler on some rapids on the Bloodvein River
Ray Goodwin and paddling partner on the Bloodvein River. Photo: Paul Kirtley

Listen To Episode 2 Of The Paul Kirtley Podcast

In this episode, I chat with my good friend and colleague British canoeing maestro, Ray Goodwin. We discuss wilderness expeditioning in canoe. Specifically we talk about the mindset and attitude you need in order to make the right decisions, particularly while you are in wild and remote settings. But we also talk about what it is we love about the Canadian wilderness

On a practical level, we discuss the tactics we employ when we decide to run rapids and those that we employ when we don’t as well as how to protect our kit.

All of this is born of experience of course and Ray has some tales of woe to share along the way too.

This conversation is one that took place during a wilderness canoe trip we undertook together, along with a small group of clients.

If you are not familiar with Ray and his canoeing exploits, then let me explain a little bit more about him. He’s been a pioneer of open canoe in the UK and many consider him the UK’s foremost canoe coach.

Ray’s canoeing career has taken him far and wide and he has expeditioned on four continents. Even closer to home he has achieved high adventure and ground breaking journeys, from the gruelling cross-Scotland trips of his early days in canoe to the first circumnavigation of Wales in canoe as well as the first unsupported canoe crossing of the Irish Sea.

Ray Goodwin in a bug shirt in Canada
Ray Goodwin on expedition. Photo: Paul Kirtley


How To Listen To This Podcast

You can listen to this podcast here on my website by using the player above. Just press the play button.

You can download the podcast episode .mp3 file by right-clicking on the download link to save the .mp3 file down to your local machine/device.

You can also subscribe on iTunes and on Stitcher or via my podcast-only RSS feed.


Click here to read or download the transcript of Paul Kirtley Podcast episode 002.

Books Mentioned In This Podcast


Signed Copies of Canoeing By Ray Goodwin

Ray Goodwin Canoeing Book

Ray Goodwin’s book ‘Canoeing’ was published by Pesda Press in 2011. With over 800 photographs used in sequences and photo montages, it is lavishly illustrated and covers all aspects of canoeing.

Signed copies of ‘Canoeing’ are available in the Frontier Bushcraft online store and directly from Ray Goodwin by contacting him at ray@raygoodwin.com


Canoe Courses and Trips With Ray Goodwin

Ray Goodwin paddling tandem expedition boat solo on a wilderness trip in Canada
Paddling into safe harbour above rapids on the Bloodvein River. Photo: Paul Kirtley

Below are links to the courses and trips that Ray and I deliver together:

Expedition Canoeing Skills Course

River Spey Canoe Expedition

The French River Canoe Expediton

The Bloodvein River Canoe Expedition

Thanks For Listening

Thanks for joining me on this podcast. If you have any tips, suggestions or comments about this episode, please leave them in the comments section below.

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons at the top of this page. Thanks!

Thanks again to Ray Goodwin for joining me on this podcast.

And Finally…

Finally don’t forget to leave an honest review & rating on iTunes or on Stitcher. Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of this podcast and I read each and every one of them.

Related Material On Paul Kirtley’s Blog

Six Men, Three Boats and The Bloodvein: Canoeing A Wilderness River

Bloodvein River Trip – My Personal Gear

Switching Out Of An Expedition Mindset: Two Days Of Paddling At The English Canoe Symposium

Enter A Virtuous Circle: Take Your Bushcraft Skills On An Adventure

Integrating Bushcraft With Modern Outdoor Life: Bushcraft Show 2014 Presentation

12 thoughts on “PK Podcast 002: Ray Goodwin On Wilderness Canoeing

  1. Paul, Ray, this is excellent. The description of the risk assessment is particularly good.

    Ray, I share your interest and love of traditional route as will as your interest in pictograph. Coming across pictographs during a wilderness canoe trip draws me into the lives of the native americans and is a joy.

    1. Hi Paul,

      It’s nice to hear from you. Thanks for your comments. I’m very glad you enjoyed this podcast.

      Warm regards,


    2. Paul, thank you for your comments they are most appreciated. Yep there is a real feeling of being a part of a tradition on these routes and particularly when seeing the depiction of canoes in pictographs.


  2. A very good podcast Paul, Ray certainly gives you something to think about when organizing trips out into the wilderness

  3. Hi Paul,
    I listened to you podcast with great interest. I have never done any canoeing and so was rivetted by whole language and knowledge and skills which surround canoeing. I was interested in how the weighing up of risk is so different depending on the location, level of wilderness etc, i.e. UK or further afield. I have a feeling that over the next few years, learning the skills of canoeing will be on my list,as I think it opens up a whole new window of outdoor experience and adventure.
    Thanks for making the podcast.

  4. Nailed it again Paul. Ray is a true legend 🙂

  5. Loved listening to this in the wee sleepless hours Paul. Thanks for all ur work, time, dedication and sharing.

  6. Thank you Paul,
    Superb as always!
    The content in your podcasts ‘stirs’ thoughts in my head for days if not weeks.
    Go well ,

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