Local youth in Naujaat come out to greet us on our team’s preliminary walk around town. Photo: Garry Tutte/Arctic Return
March 26th Expedition Update
After a great night’s sleep at the Four Points Sheraton at the Winnipeg Intl Airport, (thank you everyone there for the great stay!) it was time for the four of us to head North to Naujaat, bright and early (7:30 am) on Calm Air, with stops in Churchill, Manitoba and Rankin Inlet, Nunavut.
Well rested, our main preoccupation for the day was keeping track of our 15 pieces of luggage; the essentials comprised of skis, sleds, camera gear, batteries and food etc. and making sure all was reloaded in Rankin Inlet onto the smaller aircraft for the final one hour flight leg of today’s journey.
We arrived at Naujaat 3 pm to a beautiful, beautiful calm day and a warm, friendly greeting from local High School Vice-Principal, Julia MacPherson, and Karen from the Inns North Hotel who were both kind enough to meet us at the airport and help with transportation.
After getting everything off-loaded, moved into our accommodations and ourselves settled, it was still early enough for the team to stretch our legs in the hamlet. The local people were welcoming, knew about the expedition and very, very willing to offer information and advice. We had the opportunity to acquire our first local knowledge in realtime, sitting and chatting with one gentleman outside the Co-op. He told us about the wolves in the area that were following the caribou and that we could expect to see both once we were out on the land.
Back at the hotel it was time to pack the sleds, recheck all the gear and parcel out the food. Between the four of us we have an estimated 600,000 calories (yes 600,000 calories!) of nutrition packed to carry us through. It sounds like a lot, but for the four of us over a span of 40 days travelling in the Arctic under our own steam, it’s really not that much.
It was a great, great day! The four of us are extremely excited to be here after all this time and preparation. We’re here, the gear and food are here, the sleds are here. We can’t wait to get started! [The Arctic Return Team]