All hail Verna-Dawn Higgins, the AO PORTAGE QUEEN of 2017! Turns out the recently crowned Verna-Dawn is new this year to the PITPC and a bit social media shy (totally understandable, Verna-Dawn!) but was very excited about her regal find on the small trail leading to the waterfalls, just off the Pen to Clydesgale portage in Algonquin Park. Check out the (super awesome) t-shirt Verna-Dawn made for collecting #PaddlePoints while she was out seeking her royal paddle title, and see what she had to say about her experience finding the 2017 AO PORTAGE QUEEN paddle (also featuring Sometimes Eventful) below.


Hi Fiona ,
Hard to believe a weeks gone by since I found the Beautiful engraved BADGER Portage Queen paddle and received your most uplifting e-mail.  Summer keeps me OUT THERE and away from my computer.

I’m a private person and have never engaged in social media until signing up to PITPC. So this is a huge step for me getting photos posted and finding the Portage Queen paddle .:o))))

Thanks so much Fiona -for the engraved paddle and for what you do, the
PITPC , sponsors and everything behind the scenes . Its truly Life
Changing for myself and probably many others too.

Verna-Dawn Higgins (via email)


So paddles up and a big congrats to Her Royal Majesty Vera-Dawn Higgins, the very gracious AO PORTAGE QUEEN of 2017! Plus a special thanks to Algonquin Outfitters and Sometimes Eventful for helping to crown this year’s winner. There are still more paddles to be found, and more #PaddlePoints to be collected so keep getting “Out There” everyone!

Written by Fiona
Mother, wife, friend, artist, paddler, and owner of Badger Paddles. As co-founder and title sponsor of the PITPC, I'm not eligible to win. But I still wanted to get "Out There" too, and help advocate to get lots of people to spend more time in nature. So I'm really only in it for the fun, and not for the prizes!