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Hugh Heward challenge returns to mid-Michigan

Posted at 7:53 AM, May 01, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-01 07:53:44-04

LANSING, Mich. — For the first time since the pandemic paddlers took to the Grand River on Saturday to reenact a one-day, 50 mile float.

The event follows the same path as British fur trader Hugh Heward who did the trip as more of a sprint in April of 1790.

“Well, a 50-mile day would be a lot," said Patrick Harrington, one of the event organizers. "These paddlers, these folks will take anywhere between six to 12 hours to do that,"

Among the paddlers are hobbyists, amatures and even ultra marathoners

“The sport of canoeing is a very peaceful, it’s very relaxing– you can float along or you can paddle really fast. And you can take your gear and just enjoy the day," he said.

The paddlers avoided most of the rain today and Jim Looker who participated in the run with his son tells me the two really enjoyed it.

“Today we had really nice weather, we had a tailwind, a nice current– beautiful weather for a paddle," Looker said.

Looker covered the 25-mile distance in his two-person kayak, but other participants paddled in canoes and there was even one four person canoe.

The Hugh Heward Challenge is a yearly event so if you missed today’s run you can join in next year.

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Tianna Jenkins

12:23 PM, Jan 12, 2021
Isabella Martin, Multimedia Journalist

Isabella Martin

3:46 PM, May 05, 2022

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