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Coeur d’Alene Tribe Members Begin 100-Plus Mile Journey in Dugout Canoe

January 19, 2017

Coeur d’Alene Tribe Members Begin 100-Plus Mile Journey in Dugout Canoe

A 700 year old log, hand carved canoes, and a 100 mile journey all for a cause.  This is a beautiful story about historical reawakening.

By Becky Kramer on Spokesman.com

Coeur d’Alene tribe member Kodamen Matheson, front, is among the escorts paddling a Sturgeon nose canoe during the first leg of the tribe’s journey on Tuesday. Members launched their dug-out canoe made from an old-growth cedar log from Lake Coeur d’Alene near Heyburn State Park, and plan to meet up with the Upper Columbia United Tribes at Kettle Falls on June 17. (Kathy Plonka / The Spokesman-Review)
Smoke from burning sweetgrass drifted over the 35-foot-long dugout cedar canoe and its seven paddlers.

Words of prayer and blessing were spoken, seeking protection for the trip ahead.

And then the crowd erupted with cheers, whistles and back-slapping excitement as the paddlers took their places. Vincent Peone, a member of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe, slipped into the canoe’s last open seat and picked up his paddle. The shovel-nose canoe glided through the marshy waters at the southern end of Lake Coeur d’Alene, gaining speed as the paddlers found their rhythm.

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