Boat Classes

David Thompson

Known as “the greatest land geographer who ever lived” was also the first European to explore the full length of the Columbia River. In the spring of 1811 at Boat Encampment (near the mouth of the now flooded Canoe River north of Mica Creek) he built the first of 9 canoes.

Race Information

If you have any questions please contact us!

Join us on one of these paddlesport events to paddle part or all of this three-day, 125 journey following in the wake of David Thompson on the Columbia River now known as Lake Revelstoke. The course parallels highway 23 between the snow capped Selkirk and Monashee mountains. It begins at Mica Creek, 147 km north of Revelstoke, and ends at the 5 mile boat launch near Revelstoke Dam about 10 km north of Revelstoke. In Category 1 there are 6 mandatory portages most of which are on parts of the old “Big Bend” road between the lake and highway 23. We acknowledge that the course is in the Secwépemc peoples territory and we thank them for allowing us to use their lands and waters.

The event offers a singular opportunity for racers to test their skill and endurance on a challenging course competing for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place awards in their boat, age and gender class. Recreational paddlers in Category 1, intent on completing the course with portages within the time frame will receive the coveted distance pin. All paddlers will experience adventure amid some of the most breathtaking scenery in Canada.

The David Thompson Classic (Category 1) welcomes canoes, kayaks, row-boats and stand-up paddleboards in many age, family and gender classes. There is a group for everyone! Those interested in paddling one, two or three days without portages are welcome in the Revelstoke Paddlesport Challenge (Category 2) event.

Many businesses, civic groups and volunteers make this event a positively memorable experience for all participants. Incredible help comes from many volunteers and businesses in and around Revelstoke. Our sponsors appreciate your support.


There are many lodging and dining facilities in Revelstoke. Please support our sponsors. Be aware that there are no services on highway 23 north of Revelstoke (gas, food or lodging) and that the start line at Mica Creek is a 147 km (2 hour) drive from Revelstoke.


Developed camping sites on highway 23 along our canoe route include Martha Creek Provincial Park – 46 sites (for reservations or 800-689-9025), and the following non-reservable recreation sites ( Wadey (LaForme) – 30 sites, Carnes Creek – 33 sites and Downie Creek – 22 sites.

See maps for locations. Camping is also available on public land along highway 23, but park well off the white line on the edge of the highway and refrain from littering.


We are offering a pre-race pasta dinner with meat balls, salad, garlic toast and dessert at the Powder Springs Motel (Last Drop Pub), 200 3rd St. West, Revelstoke on Thursday evening for $21 per person tax and tip included. Reserve on the registration form. A nice way to meet other paddlers.

A free (to competitors and volunteers) post race BBQ will be served at the finish line (5-mile boat launch) between 12:30 pm and 4:00 pm on Sunday with the awards ceremony. A limited number of extra tickets will be available for sale at the BBQ.


Awards will be presented to the top three finishers in all competitive classes (both categories and all options) at the awards ceremony and post race BBQ as soon as all boats are in. All paddlers completing all three days of the event in category 1 are eligible for a distance pin. There will also be some special awards, music and other festivities.


There is a free shuttle for paddlers, but not their boats, before the race each day from the finish line to the start line each day. For Category 1 paddlers, on your first day drop your boat at the start line before the start and drive to the finish line (Goldstream Creek) to catch the shuttle bus back to the start line. Your vehicle will then be at the finish line when you arrive. On days 2 and 3 boats will be at the start line so just drive your vehicle to the finish line to catch the shuttle.

For those in Category 2 paddling two days (Saturday& Sunday) or one day (Sunday) you must move your canoe to the start and park your vehicle at the finish to catch the shuttle back to the start. Check the YES box on the Registration Form if you will require this service.


All paddlers must carry a Transport Canada approved life vest, with a pea whistle attached, in their boat AT ALL TIMES. Life vests must be accessible and may NOT be attached to the boat. Boat cushions are not considered adequate flotation devices. Paddler’s under 14 and SUP paddlers must wear life vests while on the water. All boats except SUP’s must have a 5 meter cord of sufficient strength attached to their bow for towing should the need arise.

All boats must keep within 200 meters of the East shore of the Lake except at the mouths of creeks and bays. Keep to the left of all red marker buoys. Boats exceeding the 200 meters will be disqualified and removed from the event.

It is the responsibility of all participants to come to the aid of fellow paddlers if the need arises.

To ensure the safety of all participants, there will be patrol boats with communications devices on the course each day staffed by professional personnel and other volunteers who are the final arbiters on questions of safety. They are there to offer assistance.

Officials reserve the right to:

  1. Disqualify a boat, delay, shorten or stop the event at any time due to wind, weather or other conditions.
  2. Require paddlers to accept a tow, land their boat or leave the race if, in their opinion, the safety of either the paddlers in question or others are being jeopardized.
  3. Disqualify any paddler who, in their opinion, is interfering with or disregarding any safety procedure.
  4. Require paddlers to WEAR their life vests.
  5. Take any action they deem necessary to ensure the safety of any or all participants. A boat carrying alcohol or recreational drugs will be automatically disqualified.

If the race is stopped or delayed your time will be recorded and you will be guided to a shore location and instructions given about resuming or canceling the rest of the day.

Cut-off times have been established for each day of racing to ensure that all paddlers and volunteers are off the water before dark. Paddlers failing to make these cut-offs will be required to pull out of the event for the day and will be listed as DNF “did not finish” for that day, and may paddle the next day in the Open Touring Class. Paddlers who do not make the cut-offs will not be eligible for distance pins.


There will be gender and age classes in both categories for solo and tandem boats only as follows:

GENDER: Male, female and mixed.
AGE: Age class must be based on the youngest person in the boat.
OPEN: Under 40
SUPER VETERANS: 75+  in C2 stock, touring kayak and C4 stock classes only.


Paddlers should consider boats that are stable enough to handle windy conditions found on the lake from time-to-time. Modifications may be made to boats, such as taping covering material over the center part of a canoe or tying flotation bags in the bow and stern. Be aware that all modifications are subject to the approval of the boat judge. Boats registered in category 1 should be light enough to transport over the race’s portages, one of which is 1.6 km in length. These guidelines have been written as specifically as possible. The on-site boat judge is the final arbiter of all class decisions. If you have any questions call the race hotline at (250) 814-7473.

Category 1: David Thompson Classic (with 6 portages)

3-DAY OPEN TOURING: This is the non – competitive lass for canoes, kayaks and SUP’s who want to complete the whole course with portages and earn their prestigious distance pin. No age or gender divisions and no 1st, 2nd, or 3rd-place medals will be given. You are only in it to finish. Times will be kept and recorded for your information. This group of paddlers will start first each day.

C-1 RACING: One person in a solo racing boat (concave gunwales).

C-1 STOCK: Maximum length – 17’ 0”, Tumblehome not to exceed 3.5” per side. 

C-1 RECREATION: Any canoe of any material with a maximum length of 16’ 0” and a minimum width at the 4” waterline of 22”. Must use double bladed paddle.

C-2 STOCK: Two person (tandem) canoe. Included in this class are hulls similar to the Jensen 18. There are minimal concave lines in the hull and no concave lines in the gunwales. Maximum length is 18’ 6’’, no minimum weight. Minimum width at 4’’ waterline is 15 percent of length (33 5/16’’ for 18’6’’). Tumblehome max is 1’’ per side. The current C-2 Stock list includes: Wenonah: Jensen 17, Jensen 18, Jensen WW11, Sundowner, Minnesota II, Monarch, Odyssey, Escape, and Escapade; GRB Newman Designs: Traveler 17’ 5’’, Traveler 18’ 6’’, Monarch; Mad River: Lamoille, Horizon; Bell Canoe Works: Northstar, Northwind and Northwoods; Savage River Works: Susquehanna; Sawyer: Cruiser.

C-2 RECREATION: Two person (tandem) canoe. Maximum length – 17 feet, 6 inches. Weight – minimum of 55 pounds from the manufacturer. Race organizer discretion.

C-3 FAMILY: Must be related, with one paddler 10 years old or younger – or a dog (on a leash). Recreation or Stock boats only. Paddlers under 14 MUST WEAR a Transport Canada approved life vest while in the canoe. 

C-4 UNLIMITED CLASS: Maximum length of 25’ 11”, Minimum weight 50 pounds. Boat must be built to accommodate 4 paddlers. Minimum width at the widest point from gunwale to gunwale is 32”. No concavity along the length of the gunwale from bow to stern. Minimum depth: Bow = 17”, Center =12 ½”, Stern = 13 ½”. Paddlers must use canoe paddles. One of a kind boats are permitted.



STANDARD VOYAGEUR CANOE: Minimum of 6 paddlers in a canoe built to meet the following specifications: Maximum length 28’, Minimum width at gunwales and 6” waterline 39”, Minimum depth of 14”.

OPEN VOYAGEUR CANOE: Minimum of 7 paddlers in a boat built to accommodate them.

K-1 TOURING KAYAK: Solo kayak of any material with a maximum length of 20’ and a minimum width at the 4” waterline of 18”.

K-1 UNLIMITED: Solo kayak over 20’ long and/or less than 18” wide at the 4” waterline. Includes SURFSKI’S.

K-2: Two people in any kayak.

SUP- STAND-UP PADDLE BOARD: 14 ft or less.


USE OF WHEELS ON PORTAGES: Wheels have become more popular in recent years and can be especially helpful on portages. Those who opt to use wheels must carry the wheels and all associated equipment with them during the entire race.

Category 2: Revelstoke Paddlesport Challenge (with no portages)


Option 1: 3-DAY CHALLENGE: This is the option for paddlers who want to complete the whole 3-day course without portages starting at Mica Creek competing for 1st, 2nd or 3rd place prizes in their boat class .

Option 2: 2-DAY CHALLENGE: This option is for paddlers who want to complete the last 2 days (Saturday and Sunday) without portages starting at Goldstream Creek and compete for 1st, 2nd or 3rd place prizes in their boat class .

Option 3: 1-DAY CHALLENGE: This is the class for paddlers who want to complete the last day only (Sunday) without portages starting at Mars Creek and compete for 1st, 2nd or 3rd place prizes in their boat class.


SOLO RACING CANOE: Canoe designed for racing.

SOLO CANOE: Maximum length 17′. No concave gunnels.

TANDEM RACING CANOE: Two paddlers. Canoe designed for racing.

TANDEM CANOE: Two paddlers. Maximum length 18’ 6’’. No concave gunnels.

FAMILY CANOE TRIO: Must be related. One person under 16. Maximum length 18′ 6″ No concave gunnels.

FOUR IN A CANOE: Four paddlers. Maximum length 25’ 11”. Must be designed by the manufacturer to accommodate 4 paddlers. 

VOYAGEUR CANOE: Minimum of 6 paddlers in a canoe built to accommodate them.

SOLO TOURING KAYAK: Kayaks of any material. Maximum length 20’. Minimum width at the 4” waterline 18”.

SOLO UNLIMITED KAYAK: Kayak over 20’ long and/or less than 18” wide at the 4” waterline. 

TANDEM KAYAK: Two people in any kayak.

SUP A: Stand-up paddleboard 14′ ft or less.

SUP B: Stand-up paddleboard over 14′.


OC-2 OUTRIGGER: 2 paddlers.

OC-6 OUTRIGGER: 6 paddlers.

DRAGON BOAT: Minimum of 9 paddlers.


Paddlers are encouraged to have support personnel, or “pit crews”, accompany them along the course. Pit crews can carry belongings and offer refreshments and encouragement at portages, enabling paddlers to focus on the task at hand. Pit crews must provide their own vehicles. Pit crews may provide only nutritional assistance and encouragement; they may NOT carry the  boat or equipment, upgrade equipment or change paddlers during the course of a day’s paddling. Only broken or malfunctioning gear may be replaced. Pit crews may NOT provide wheels for a boat on any portage. If a racer opts to use wheels to carry their boat, they must carry the wheels in their boat all three days.


We need volunteers, safety boats, timing personnel, monitors, etc. Please call the race hotline at (250) 814-7473. We sincerely appreciate all the help we can get to make this event enjoyable and successful for all! Volunteers are offered some expenses and a free meal at the awards ceremony on Sunday.


We need support from hotels, motels, bed & breakfasts, restaurants, pubs, campgrounds, boat dealers and other businesses for a successful event. Please read the Sponsorship Package.

Day One

Day Two

 Day Three


David Thompson Paddlesport Classic – Category 1:
$130.00 per paddler for solo boats. $110.00 per paddler for 2, 3 and 4 paddlers per boat. $90 per paddler for 6 or more paddlers per boat.

Revelstoke Paddlesport Challenge – Category 2:
Same as David Thompson Paddlesport Classic for three days. $90 per person if paddling only 2 days (Saturday and Sunday) and $70 per person if paddling on Sunday only.


Entries are accepted by mail, e-mail or on the WEBSCORER.COM website until 5:00 PM, PT, July 3, 2019. You can use e-transfers or PayPal for credit card payments. Registrations must be accompanied with a signed waiver for each paddler and fees. Registrants will be listed on our web site by boat class in early June.


Early bird discount for registering by June 7: $30 off for solo paddlers, $20 off per paddler for boats with 2, 3 or 4 paddlers, $10 off per paddler for boats with 6 or more paddlers and $10 per paddler off for those paddling only one or two days in Category 2. Late registrations received between July 4 and July 15 must include a $50 surcharge per boat. Late registrations without this fee or received after July 15 will be returned.


Participants packets will be mailed out by July 5 to the first person listed on the registration form. The packet will include boat numbers, meal tickets, T-shirts and Paddlers’ Guides.


Refunds will be available until July 8th, 2019 subject to a $25.00 per person administration fee. No refunds after July 8th, 2019 for any reason.


Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to carry all my gear with me during the event?
No, most people carry water, food and extra clothing. Your pit crew can move the rest of your gear from the start to the finish each day.
Do I need a pit crew?
No. We will provide an early shuttle from the finish line to the start line before the race each day. However, a pit crew can meet you at portages, provide encouragement, food and water and are highly recommended.
Is there a shuttle provided?
Yes, we will provide an early shuttle from the finish line to the start line before the race each day. Your boat must be at the start line before the shuttle on Day 1.
Where do people stay overnight?
At hotels, motels, or bed & breakfasts in Revelstoke. Visit for more information. RV and tent camping are available at Martha Creek Provincial Park (reservations recommended) or various recreation sites (space permitting). See the INFORMATION BOOKLET for details.


Are campgrounds at the finish lines?
No. The INFORMATION BOOKLET lists, and included maps show locations of Parks and recreation sites. However, camping is permitted on Crown Land and almost all the land along highway 23 is Crown Land including both the start and finish areas of Day 2 but the land is stony or brushy and not overly level.
Do we start where we finished the day before?
Yes. Your boat will be stored overnight at the finish line each day – unless you prefer to take it with you.
What if I don't have a boat?
Canoes and SUP’s are available for rent from several local sources: Canoes at and SUP’s at
Is there food and water provided during the event?
Yes. Pit stop snacks and water are provided at the beginning of portage 2, 3 and 6 on days 1, 2 and 3 respectively (see maps) and at the daily finish lines. Please consider pit stop snacks and water as supplemental to your own supply.
Do I need a map?
Maps are always a good idea but you can’t get lost if you stay within the 200 meter limit off the East shore of the Lake. For those using a GPS instrument, latitude and longitude coordinates are provided for daily start, finish and portages in the PADDLERS’ GUIDE.
Where do I go to the bathroom?
There are portable toilets at the start and finish lines each day. If nature calls in between please be discreet.
What if I don't finish?
If you quit for any reason you absolutely must notify race officials in motor boats or at portages and give them your boat number. We are responsible for your safety but you must be sensible. The best places to quit are at the beginning of portages where we can provide transport to your car. Do not turn around and paddle back as there may be nobody to help you. If you do quit you are welcome to start in the open touring class on the remaining days.
How difficult is this event?
Anyone who has done some canoe tripping or long distance paddling is capable of completing the course and obtaining their mileage pin. If you are unsure of yourself or your crew enter in the OPEN CLASS or the one-day event on Sunday. If you are fit you should have no problem.
What sort of training regimen should I have prior to the race?
This is a three-day endurance activity. We encourage people to go to other events to see what gear people have in their boats and to experience long distance racing. The more you prepare, the more enjoyable your Classic experience will be.
Where can I find out about more races to prepare myself?
Visit for other races in BC.


What about the portages?
The portages help to break up the monotony of continuous paddling. They give your arms a break and turn the work over to your legs. There are 7 portages indicated with distances on the map and described in the PADDLERS’ GUIDE. There are no steep hills, nor rocky, narrow trails. Wheels are highly recommended but must be carried in your vessel throughout the event. Make sure you have a system for carrying your boat and gear. Be courteous when passing slower boats. Be organized and efficient. Practice portaging.
What clothing should I wear?
Wear quick drying synthetic clothing that is comfortable. Avoid cotton. Bring a hat. Wear footwear that will get wet and is comfortable when carrying your vessel.
What extra gear should I consider having with me?
Spare paddle, good PFD, a way to carry water (including on portages), sunscreen, warm clothes and raingear in the event the race must be stopped, portage yoke or a way to carry your boat across the portages. Be aware that the water is cold and winds can come up.
Are there rapids?
No, this is a flatwater course.
Who organizes the DTPC?
The David Thompson Paddlesport Classic is organized by the Revelstoke Paddlesport Association.