LEWISTON, ID — Martin Trahan and Jillian Brown are two Canadians traveling in a canoe, across the United States. It'll take them seven months to reach the Atlantic. But on the way, they say they'll discover what a happy lifestyle is all about while also living their dreams.
"This trip, if everything goes well, should take us maybe seven months," says Martin Trahan.
Martin Trahan and Jillian Brown are canoeing across America.
"I think both of us just love the feeling of being on the water and discovering the culture behind it," says Jillian Brown.
They're just about a month into their journey, starting from Astoria, Oregon until Miami, Florida, traveling along some of the most well-known rivers in the country: the Columbia, to the Snake, the Missouri, Mississippi, Ohio, Tennessee, and the Tombigbee. It's almost five thousand miles, and so far it hasn't been easy.
"I already lost 25 pounds, which is a lot in one month,” says Trahan.
"Every day has had hardships for sure. But every day has been so incredibly beautiful. I couldn't complain about it," adds Brown.
The two have battled difficult current all the way from the Pacific coast, but it's all downstream from here.
“The Missouri we kind of expect it to be fairly easy since it's finally going downstream. Not fighting current," says Brown.
She’s a nature photographer, and she grew paddling. She's already accomplished one dream.
"Since I was a child, it's been a goal of mine to photograph a rattlesnake. So the first one we saw, I was able to be a few feet away from it and get some gorgeous shots," she says
Her next big dream is to paddle in the Everglades. As for Martin, he's done this before. He canoed across Canada in 2015. For him, paddling isn't an adventure.
"It's more like a lifestyle. All my friends back home see me as an adventurer, a real one. I don't see myself like that, I'm just enjoying life. I'm just doing what I love and living my dreams," he says.
They'll be following the trail Lewis and Clark took. But up next for them, possibly the hardest part.
"We are going to portage the great divide. We are going to be hiking over the great divide with our canoe and a couple packs," says Brown.
They'll be walking over 300 miles from Lewiston to Helena, Montana, and they won't get there for around another month.
To follow them on their journey, go to coursingthroughamerica.com and click on “Track Us.” You can also see photos and videos on both Jillian and Martin's Instagram pages.