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The voyageurs generally began their voyages in May, when the water of the Canadian forests and what became the U.S. Upper Midwest had thawed and the nights were no longer freezing.

The voyageurs transported trade goods via canoe to places hundreds miles of away and then returned in fall to their starting point in Montreal, Ontario and other European settlements with packs of valuable furs. It was an excruciatingly hard job at best, paddling a loaded canoe 14-15 hours per day at a rapid pace. At breaks in the chains of lakes, rivers and streams, or at rapids and waterfalls, the voyageurs had to carry their canoes (weighing 300-600 each) and hundreds of pounds of cargo on land. Occasionally they had to step into the water and guide or even tow the canoe. The voyage could.not have been made in cold weather.

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Q: When did voyageurs usually start their journey?
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