Tuesday, April 5, 2011


Well, we made it to Inuvik, but I sadly didn't see much of it.
After arriving in the Arctic village, I came down with a terrible fever, cough and headache, leaving me drained and miserable.
So instead of taking part in the Muskrat Jamboree, I spent the weekend sleeping on Kira's couch.
Sadly this means I don't have photos to share from Inuvik. But rather than dwell on the unfortunate circumstances of this weekend, I've decided to write a happy post about an adventure I went on last weekend.

Reaching water

Although we started our ice fishing trip with four vehicles, only two made it to our destination -- the ones with four-wheel drive.
In search of an unknown location, recommended by someone's colleague, my friends and I followed a blinking dot on a GPS further and further onto a snow-blown Walsh Lake.
Creeping along the unplowed snow, my new-found friend Linh put on a reggae song and confidently steered the car to our destination -- or close to it -- as the rest of us bounced around in the backseat, watching to make sure the SUV transporting the rest of our crew was still en route behind us.
When we arrived at our chosen fishing hole, we took out three ice augers to create it.
I think this would be an easy task anywhere other than the North. But here, the ice is at least five feet deep, which means five feet of manual drilling -- that is unless you have a fancy gas auger.

We drilled, we scooped out the ice shavings, drilled again, chipped away the ice to widen the opening and then drilled even deeper.
The process went on like that for what felt like forever.
Halfway through our three holes, we had all worked up such a sweat that we had to peel off our parkas and sweaters, leaving a few of the guys in T-shirts.

Although I was getting miserable from the monotonous butter churning motion of working the auger, when we reached water for the first time, there was a sense of great satisfaction.
There were high fives, smiles, and triumphant poses for the camera.

I think the only thing that could have topped that exhilarating feeling would have been catching a fish, a triumph that sadly went unattained, despite Ian's constant jigging and checking.
I guess this just means I'll have to head out for another ice fishing adventure before the ice disappears. And if I still don't catch a fish, I've been guaranteed I'll hook at least a few this summer.
All I know is, I'm not giving up until I have one on the barbeque.

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