support unicef Palm Orbit Rand Shock Support American Whitewater!

[please login to make this ad block disappear]


Ottawa Valley, Ottawa River, Garburator

Playspot: Canada, Ontario, Ottawa Valley, Ottawa River, Garburator.

What's it like

Photo by D. Law from Kayak Yukon

Picture reproduced with kind permission from Kayak Yukon

Garburator is a super fast wave - the sensation of speed is not for the timid, good for front surfing for those who still do that. The spot is well-loved by Ottawa river playboaters. This video of Garburtor (3.34 MB mpg format) was shot by Jon Miles.

It is accessed from a large eddy river left. You can run the Lorne and eddy out river left just below a large rock known as Moby Dick (which is there at level 1 and below) or boof into the eddy from the ledge far river left (really boily landing).

Level 0 on the Owl Gauge is every serious Ottawa River playboater's favourite level. It gets steeper to about -4 when you'd be challenging sane boating to go in.

Character: Capricious. Catch an edge and find out why it's called Garburator. There's also something fun to do for those scared to actually drop into the hole, called a Dick Spin: go the massive river left eddy and line up with the boaters going into the hole. Instead of dropping into the hole, charge the main flow of water that skirts the hole on its right side, plant a low brace on your left as your bow enters the main stream and hang on.

How to get there

Just downriver of Horseshoe Hole (See CA, ON).

Go the Owl Rafting/MKC put in, that's where everyone goes: take highway 17 from Ottawa and turn off on Storyland Road (approximately 1.5 hours). Follow this road until you come to a large white sign for Rafting companies (Wilderness Tours, Owl, River Run), then turn right. Follow this small road all the way to the top of the river, which will be indicated by small yellow, diamond shaped signs that will begin at the number five. When you reach number one (20 minutes from turn off by rafting sign), you have reached your final destination! There will be a large parking lot there where you can put in (the Owl/MKC lot). There are even toilets.

More info

There is a gauge just downriver of the rapid. This gauge can be checked before your excursion by
contacting one of the rafting companies such as Owl or Wilderness Tours (+1 613 6462291).


Ottawa is a playboater's dream. You'll see lots of them there. The locals are nice. Cobden is probably the nearest village, but it's a 15-20 minute drive from the campsites (Log and Lantern, River Run). If you forgot your camp kitchen, Country Kitchen or the Northway Cafe in Cobden are ok.


Ottawa River Rodeo, usually in September

Info sources

Ann Wild

Derrick Law, Kayak Yukon



Surfrider Foundation
See the AUP for our Acceptable Use Policy and a Privacy Statement. Verein Playak is responsible for all editorial content on this site (including all graphics). No part of this site may be duplicated in any way without explicit permission from Verein Playak. Verein Playak takes great care to only publish original content, but since part of the content is user generated, we cannot always guarantee this 100%. If you notice any copyright violations, please let the editors know through the contact form and they will take appropriate action immediately. As a news and information platform, we republish small text snippets and thumbnail images, but always link to original content on other sites, and thus aim to adhere to a 'Fair Use' policy. If you believe we violate this policy in any particular case, please contact us directly and we'll take appropriate action immediately.