Perhaps one of the great therapeutic advantages of canoeing is the escape from the strictures of time. The rat-race recedes, the noise of civilization is attenuated and the greatest stress is whether the white water starts around this or the next bend. Time is a relative quality and, according to Einstein, may be purely a local phenomenon, related only to the earth and its environs.
Time is also subject to compression and elongation through the agency of mind. It is in the mind that any true perception of the scale of time as applied to the rocks over which the rivers course is grasped. Time as a concept must encompass the very essence of the formation and development of the earth as seen in the rock record. Geological time is as distinct and alien to "normal time" as "canoe time" can be.
In northern Saskatchewan the scars and effects of earth processes are recorded in the rocks. Any canoe passage through these altered and sometimes metamorphosed rocks can not fail to be enriched by an understanding of the formative processes and the messages that time has left in the rocks. It is my job as a geologist to try to explain these processes and to find, through the rocks themselves, a greater understanding of the earth and the land that we as individuals and possibly a species so temporarily inhabit.
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