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McGill or UBC ?

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    I’m going to be applying to graduate school this next year and need some advice. I was thinking of going to UBC- its a goods school in a good city. But than I thought- What if big water playboating just isn’t the same out there? a PhD can take 5 years if your lucky- which is way too long to be a away from big water.

    So how’s the paddling around Vancouver that would be ascessible to a student? I know there’s white water but is there anything big like the Ottawa- or have I just been spoiled.

    If not, instead, I might just to McGill. The Lachine is downtown and the city not too far a drive from beachburg, is it?

    I know you probably shouldn’t pick the school by the river its near- but whoever would say that just doesn’t paddle. I mean five years…

    BTW, I checked if there was a decent chemistry department near the Zambezi, and regretably there isn’t, so no need to suggest that.

    Any opinions?



    Skookumchuck is close to Vancouver, although you have to take a ferry to get there.

    Really though, you’ll quickly forget about playboating at all with the endless number of rivers within a couple hours.


    McGill is a world reknowned school. Montreal is roughly 2 hours from Ottawa and therefore roughly 3.5 hours from Beachburg. Can’t go wrong.


    There is nothing wrong with creeking in BC … it is a whole new experience and will make you a better technical paddler.


    mc gill

    with the lachines near and the ottawa you cant be wrong

    Open Gate

    …and the Laurentains for creeking and Québec city within 2,5 hours endless possibilities !

    Rouge within 1,5 hours and Gatineau 3,5 hours.

    World class paddling close enough to be back home in the same day <img loading=” title=”Cool” />

    Andrew Lowles

    Both areas have great paddling, but if your into other outdoor persuits then go west….although well see just how much time you get off while doing your Ph.D. Where did you do your Masters?


    Yeah – if you are really dead set on playboating then McGill. The playboating in BC sucks in comparision.

    Everything else is better though – skiing, creeking, river running, climbing, hiking, fishing, camping – and both Vancouver and Mtl are good cities in their own right.

    But as Stefano said, you’ll forget all about Garb once you start creeking. In fact, I bet after the first day you’ll be so stoked wont think of it again.



    Thanks for all the good advice. River running is what got me into this sport in the first place… I think at the end of the day, faculty wise UBC is probably better, so I would just be going to montreal for the kayaking.

    btw, I don’t have a masters- I hope to get accepted straight into a phd program- or failing that just reclassify. No point in wasting 2 years.

    thanks again

    Andrew Lowles

    I think that your making the right choice and going where the faculty is best. It will certainly make your research more enjoyable to have the best people around you. Best of luck tropicalia.


    can you do that??Skip the master’s and go straight into a Phd? I am also heading out to Vancouver in 2008 to be a master’s student at SFU on the road to Phd I hope, climb and paddle some rivers.


    I know this is really really offtopic now- but yes at many schools you can just go straight into a phd if your marks and research experience is there. Infact, in the states, there are few masters programs left in science. At some places in canada where you can’t go straight into your phd- you do a year in the masters program and then just reclassify into your phd and that year counts towards your degree- so it is effectively the same as going straight in. All schools do this I think. Have fun at SFU.

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