Hubbard's sole motivation was to complete the journey begun by her Husband, Leonidas, who died on the original expedition. She blamed his death on the ineptitude of his traveling companion, Dillon Wallace and decided to avenge her husband a few years later by completing the journey in his stead with no outdoor experience to her credit. Not to be outdone by a city woman, Wallace also set out to complete the journey and a competition of honor ensued. Wallace seemed to have an aversion to using local knowledge and help, but Hubbard did not reject the concept. By relying on Naskapi and Innu guides she completed the journey first.
Dillon Wallace, 15 July 1903
The Virtual Museum of Canada has an online exhibit of photos regarding the first Hubbard expedition and the subsequent one by Wallace which has some great photos of the group with their expedition paddles and other gear. Note the length the paddle which might've helped with poling in the shallow, rocky waters, but I can't picture this being anything but cumbersome when paddling except in the deepest of waters.