Why Choose North Country?
Naturally we, at North Country, want your group to outfit your canoe trip through us. We also fully realize that no one, individual, outfitter can be all things to all people. For that reason, we have outlined a few areas you might want to consider when selecting the outfitter that's right for you.
For every person that dips a paddle into one of our sparkling lakes, there is a particular set of reasons for taking a canoe trip. Quite often members of the same youth group want different things from their wilderness experience. And that is how it should be. The outfitter you choose should be in a position to take all of those reasons into account, and be able to discuss them as he plans your trip with you.
There are thousands of lakes in the north country; each one is unique. Some are good on one occasion, others may be better for another trip. When you initially talked to an outfitter (whether at a sport show or on the telephone) did he actually ask what you were looking for? Did he ask about party and travel group make-up?áDid he start talking about beginning a trip from a particular lake, or into a specific area, without really knowing your unique circumstances? How close is he going to be when it comes time to design your route around your expectations and ability level?
We hope you will take the time to check out some of the following comparisons. We are one of the finest outfitting businesses in North America, with hundreds of satisfied youth groups, and thousands of satisfied customers. Many return year after year. No, we are not the cheapest. If you are looking for an "advertised price"áthat is at the bottom end of the scale, we simply cannot help you at this time. If, however, you are looking for a trip worth paying a fair price for ... one that will live in your memory for years to come ... an outfitter that you can recommend to other groups .. come see us. We can give you just that kind of experience!
Whether you are buying a car, staying at a hotel, choosing a college, or picking an outfitter, it all ends up the same: What are you getting in return for the cost? Don't make the mistake of assuming everything is the same. Quality comes at a price. A listing like "spacious tents, roomy packs, comfortable sleeping bags, and lightweight canoes" tells you nothing. Look for national brand names and particular models, specific sizes, temperature ratings, and exact weights. Don't be comforted by words like "top drawer, best, or newest."
Look at equipment lists in detail. If something you are expecting isn't specifically listed, ask about it. Don't assume it will automatically be included. Consider amenities. While they should never be the primary reason to choose one company over another, they are a good indication of the type of comprehensive services you can expect. Look for an outfitter that reflects an overall attitude towards excellence.
We use the real thing; notácheaper look-alikes!
Menus should be viewed under the same bright lights as equipment lists. "A fresh steak" for the first night on the trail may not be the same size or cut as "An 8oz USDA Certified Angus Beef Ö Steak." Increased quality and variety goes hand-in-glove with trip costs. Read each menu item as if it stands alone ... it will at meal time out in the woods. Is one brand of food used exclusively? If so, this could imply cost cutting thru quantity discounts from the manufacturer. There is nothing wrong with cost control. It may, however, indicate leaning away from variety and the best tasting individual items and towards a higher profit margin.
Check to see if items are repeated on the menu in order to make it appear to be a larger selection. A listing of peanut butter & jelly, versus another calling for jelly & peanut butter is NOT two different selections. How many ways are you expected to fix macaroni and cheese? Hot dogs are fine for a picnic lunch ... but they may be lacking in the nourishment department when served as a main course after a long day on the canoe trails.