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Answering your emails

First of all, on behalf of all the busy members of Labrador Odyssey 2001, I would like to thank everyone who took the time to send us a question, note or comment. They have been read or heard by us all - though it can take a few days - and greatly appreciated. It is our pleasure to have you along for the ride.
- Michael Peake

I just thought I'd e-mail you to say how much I enjoy reading about your adventure. The first thing that comes to mind is how can I get involved in something like this?

Steve, thanks for the comments. There are two ways to do this sort of thing. Get hold of a good outfitter or adventure travel company or do it yourself, like we did. Be advised the latter takes a lot more time to where we are now. The main thing is. . . just do it - but do it properly.- MP
First off - Good Travels to you all and I hope you have the time of your lives! I will be following you VIA the journal entries on Canoe - Keep the good pics coming in too, eh!! :)
So... I was going thought all the GREAT information on the web site and in your "Trip Food Lists" I see you have included a pachyderm to bring along? Does he get his own tent and canoe when you travel or who is the unfortunate soul that has to share a boat and sleeping quarters with him (ha ha). Just curious, is the caviar a real item or the same as the elephant... and you forgot to include whiskey.
Have fun on your ADVENTURE!!
Wayne Green B. Sc.

Wayne. Our website designer Sean Peake threw in a few goodies to see if anybody was reading all that stuff we wrote. Glad you were. And we didn't forget the whiskey where it counts! Our friends at Maxxium Canada have supplied us with some Remy Martin (for special events) and Mount Gay rum for our Boissons - MP
I just got home from the Scouts Canada Jamboree. I want to say thank you from the Staff at C-centre for coming out and sharing your adventure with the kids. We fielded many questions about your trip and how you will be making out. It was a pleasure to meet all of you.
Bill Muir, X-Centre Promotions team

Bill, It was a pleasure to appear at CJ'01 on behalf of our sponsor Woods Canada. As someone who had just done a lot of organizing myself, I was amazed at the amount of work you folks did in preparing the Jamboree. It was an honour be a small part of it. MP
Absolutely fantastic, without question some of the most beautiful shots I've seen, Well done MIchael, well done to the entire crew, the stories are riveting and we are enjoying them each day.
Mark Carter
Stay safe, warm and enjoy the odd "gar with a touch of the brandy".

Mark, We'll have more than the odd one and many thanks for your kind comments.. MP
Were you almost upset by the iceberg cracking?

No, we were a safe distance away, through it's not always easy to judge what a safe distance it. MP
The North West River Museum is not in a replica HBC post... it's in the real thing. Also, the bridge from NWR to Sheshatshiu is hardly new; it's been there since 1979.
Wallace J.McLean

Wallace, thanks for the info. I guess "new" is a relative term. Also I believe we said it was the original HBC post in our story but not in the photos. What is inside now is a replica post from that era. MP
Just a short note to say hello, welcome and from your web site reports it sure looks like you folks are having a great trip. Photos are excellent.
Slowly but surely Newfoundland / Labrador is becoming known as a first class outdoor adventure tourism destination. And you folks are right in the middle of what we have to offer. Our outdoor adventure product is world class. The sector has experienced steady growth for the last ten years and has really started to take off in the last 3 - 4 years in all aspects. Will keep checking your site as you progress and remember as you work your way through the Torngats - work to have this area declared a National Park is well advanced. This area will then be protected for all future generations to enjoy.
Calvin C. Yates, Manager, Outdoor Product Development, Newfoundland & Labrador Tourism, Culture and Recreation

Cal, Thanks for your comments and I agree, Labrador is a first class wilderness destination. I tried very hard to work with your Tourism people in St John's and Happy Valley-Goose Bay before the trip to help promote it. But there was no real interest. MP
It's amazing to sit in my chair in Oshawa, Ontario, and experience even a fraction of the peace and the awe inspired by the pictures shared by the crew members. The feelings expressed in the picture captions must hardly capture the raw emotions of being on the spot. The term "drink in the view" could never be more aptly applied, than in the case of the images we get to share with you.
I have to wonder if the Minkes were watching your reaction to the mutual discovery happening between the bears and the caribou. Do you think your bright colours (gear and lifejackets, etc.) effected the reactions from the bears? Had you stopped paddling at that point? What did the animals do when you took to motion again? Were there any vocalizations from either animal?
Liette Lemieux, Oshawa, Ontario

It was certainly an incredible moments when we saw the bears and the caribou. We were paddling by when the bears got up and left. We stayed put about 200 metres off shore without any noise and the bears swam back and continued doing their things with an occasional glance at us from Mom. The caribou seemed to ignore the bears until they got within 30 feet or so and then they moved quite quickly, though a polar bear could have trouble catching a caribou - on land. - MP
Great armchair adventure story in Labrador. As I've missed my own river adventure this open water season, (I think, thus far) your trip is en excellent surrogate trip for me. I tune in each night after toiling in an engineering office and deflect the "honey do" list on the fridge door at home and go for the ride, single malt in hand.
You guys spend a lot of time on scenery and technical stuff which is great, don't stop, but the "real" stuff of canoe trips as we all know - is the food!
In your Reports, tell us all about your meals and the culinary masters efforts in their creation and your delight (or not ), in the repast!!!!!!!!!!!
By the way, I'm glad you have a Boisson chief and appropriate libations. What about the Cohibas or Romeo y Jullietta's?
John S. Langan, London, ON

John, The HACC is not short of rituals and good food - some of which we keep private but rest assured your will see some on the Web before long. -MP
Hi paddlers, I'm sure you are living many people's dream. I would like to know what's the temperature during the day & night.. ?
This is amazing, good luck and safe trip.
Marc from Ottawa

Daytime highs when it's sunny have reached 23°C but average 18-20°C and nightime lows are 2 - 5°C on average. - MP
What do I need to be able to open the 360 pix? Congratulations -- looks like a marvellous trip. Wayne
It will open with Quicktime - a free program from Apple..
Just visiting your web page and it looks like you are having quite the time!!. I work with the Provincial Archaeology Office in St. John's NF and one of your pictures caught my attention - the tent rings which were taken on July 17 (where were they located? Do you have lats and longs?. While on your journey it would be appreciated it if you could send along any photos and the lats and longs (and whether it is NAD 1927 or 1983) for anything that looks like an archaeological site.
Good luck with the rest of your trip.
Delphina Mercer, Resource Management Assistant, Provincial Archaeology Office, Dept. of Tourism, Culture and Recreation

We have the coordinates of all our camps and will forward them to you at the conclusion of the trip - but please reminds us. MP
Having spent some time down around Nain in the mid sixties, I have a sense of what you are experiencing and envy you. We weren't actually in Nain, but camped on Tabor Island which is about 9 miles offshore. It has a strong occurrence of Labradorite and my company was exploring it for possible economic feasibility.
At that time I was amazed at the prolific wildlife along the Labrador coast, namely whales, seals, and wild seabirds of many types. The codfish were also extremely plentiful there then. My partner and I could row a couple of hundred feet offshore and jig all we wanted within a half hour.
Has that changed over the past three decades since I was there? Have you tried any fishing? Also, have you run into anyone else during your journey, transients passing through or indigenous people?
Your photographs are awesome. After your arrival back from your trip, you must write a book and include your photos. I'm sure it will sell off the shelves.
Good luck with the remainder of this wonderful experience.
Gordon Bennett, Stratford, Ontario Gordon, Thanks for your observations from almost 40 years ago. The fishing sure has changed and we haven't seen anyone either from near or far on our travels along the coast. I would love to write a book but I don't even have time to read one. - MP
I have been following the trip and it looks fantastic.
How are the products we supplied working out for you?
Zahir Hi Zahir. We don't need your great Coolpad to stay cool up here, however it sure helps with our cold fingered typing. And likewise your Cable Stables help keep the piles of gear in their place, Thanks for your support. - MP
HACC - Your reports are great. The combination of Peter and Geoff's descriptive writing, coupled with Mike's pictures create a great mental picture. It is unbelievable what technology can do. Everyday I use one of Mike's pictures as a new wallpaper on my computer. Fantastic! I really appreciate the effort you guys make to let us (temporary) city dwellers travel to the Labrador Coast for five minutes everyday. No need to reply.
Waiting to head out for a trip on the North Shore of Lake Superior in early Aug. Chris (my wife says that this year we are going to make the HACC Chowder). Now I have to catch a fish!
John Clement and gang, Toledo, Ohio, JOPCC (Jumping Off Place Canoe Club)
PS I send your reports to our girls at camp in Northern Minnesota everyday......and they love it.

John, Thanks for the kind note. As you and your paddling daughters and wife know, it is a lot more work to do this and the payment is from people enjoying it. The best wishes from the HACC to all the Clement ladies and yourself. -MP
Good luck to you folks on your epic canoe journey. It sounds like the trip of a lifetime, and we hope the weather stays favourable for your expedition.
I must admit that we here at 8 Wing Trenton are following your trip enviously. The same days that you were stuck in Happy Valley/Goose Bay awaiting the weather to clear, we were doing the very same! We brought two C-130 Hercules aircraft and 33 personnel to Goose Bay on Tuesday the 10th for a four day low-level flying exercise. Our plan was to fly up to Saglek on the 11th and spend the night on the ground in the aircraft to demonstrate our austere operations capability. We were to depart on the 12th to fly low-level through the Torngats to Quaqtaq, where we were to deliver a load of humanitarian aid.
For us, the opportunity to fly low-level in the valleys of the Torngat Mountains is a rare occurrence, and we were looking forward to flying our planned route from Saglek west up Saglek Fjord, north and west up the Nakvak River Valley, then north up the Koroc and Palmer Rivers to Nachvak Fjord. We would have then continued north to the Komaktarvik River valley before exiting the mountains westward down the Abloviak Fjord. Unfortunately, time and the weather are our enemies as well, and we could only wait until Friday in Goose Bay to complete our mission. So, we'll try again some time in the future.
That being said, we sincerely hope that we dragged the "weather witches" back to Trenton with us last Friday (and away from Labrador), and hope to see more pictures of the amazing scenery and wildlife of the region in the next few days.
Good luck and following winds.
Capt Wes Cromwell, 436 (T) Squadron, 8 Wing Trenton, Ontario,

Wes, Well you sure just missed the great weather. From July 15 - 18 it was clear and wind free. Great for canoeing and flying. Thanks for your interest in our trip. We hope you get to make yours before too long. MP
You're doing a very good web site. I would like to know how the HACC is dealing with NFL&L Fishing law? Fishing there is outlaw without a guide. I had this problem in two short trip in the Labrador interior.
David Lefrançois, Montréal

David, we are well aware of the fishing regs for Labrador which is why we haven't sent in any fishing photos -- we're not allowed to fish. If the Newfoundland & Labrador governments truly wish to encourage canoe tripping they would drop this antiquainted rule which really applies to "sports" who come in to fish for a while and not canoeists who are supplementing their food supply with a few fish. -MP
HACC, I would like express my admiration and appreciation for your efforts in providing us the opportunity to see and read about your expedition. I find myself looking through the material you send over and over, particularly the 360's -- I can't get enough of those! I would imagine that hauling all of that equipment around isn't easy but I am "addicted" to your happenings as my wife would say.

I was curious with how the kokatat clothing has fared so far. Are the dry suits comfortable or too hot? I don't imagine that anyone is wearing them much while tracking but are you planning to wear them on the down stream journey?

Also, who has the happiest feet while tracking and what are you wearing?

Did anyone really bring a speedo? I hope I won't see a photo of that!! - no offense. LOL
Mark Matheson - Lethbridge, AB

The Kokatat gear has been excellent, obviously designed by people who get out and do stuff. We wore the drysuits on the ocean and during some tracking and will wear them down river if conditions require.
Are we impressed??? WOW! way to go Mike. You and the lads are topic #1 every Wednesday in the bar after hockey (but we still need you at the blue line). We are blown away by the Torngats, the pics are fantastic. Next time you fill up the water bottles at one of those incredible water falls please fill a small container for me. If you make it to Shoeless with it I'll trade you a Cohiba for it. See you soon.
P.S. the darks have been beating Sander and the whites.

Okay Old Boys - I will be back soon and in better shape than when I left and I'll be using a paddle instead of a hockey stick. I'll hold you to that Cohiba, Gard - MP.
Although I am not an outdoorsman, I envy all of you. Pray tell, what do each of you do when not charging around in the "outback"?
I ran across the web site three days ago, and now cannot wait to check it out daily. I am relieved today (July 25) to see you were able to get a sat link to let the world know that you are all well and still having "fun".
I enjoy the reports you are sending out daily as well as the great photos. I am blown away with the 360 photos, but why are there not new ones more often? Is it time consuming, or is it the capacity of the camera?
Keep running. I look forward to meeting all of you some day. Many thanks to Woods Canada and Canoe for their support.
Ron Davis in Prince George, British Columbia

Ron, The panoramas are 20 vertical photos taken and stitched together in the computer using Apple software. It takes about 30 minutes to do one complete one with all the computer processing. It also takes 8 times longer to send one our satphone than a regular photo. Glad you like them, we have done five a will do at least two or three more. - MP
'In behind our camp this morning there were ancient tent rings situated right next to a caribou trail and an old antler. Michael Peake photo'
How old would you think?
John Klepsch

We are not experts but they could be 500 years old or more. Perhaps some will post an answer. -MP
My boys Garron and Logan, 7 & 8 years old respectively, are enjoying following your adventures. When I told them you were a friend of mine, but, are a really good freind of Uncle Tom's, they got even more excited. They asked me to e-mail you and ask if they can join you! I thought this comment would bring a smile to your face as you are carrying a canoe over one of those high steep passes. The peacefulness, the quiet, the moment might be a little different with two young boys, full of energy and always hungry asking a million questions while you are trying to breathe.
The pictures are breathtaking. They are causing some terrific "day dreams" while I am at work.
Good Luck, Stay safe, and remember you have lots of support from three dessert rats in Phoenix, and lots of support from the whole Scoon family.
Jeff, Logan and Garron Scoon
PS When you get back to civilization put me back on the subsciption list of Che-Mun.

You got it Jeff - and thanks for the great e-mail. Looking forward to seing you at Muskie Hunt XX! - MP
What is it like being so cold all the time?
Teer Hardy, Frederick, MD

Well, it is cold but we dress for it. We much prefer it to warm weather because that's when all this bugs come out! - MP
Gentlemen, I am enjoying your trip immensely. With regard to your power source, has your original decision to take the Honda rather than rely on solar proved to be a good decision? How has the generator faired, easy starting etc. I would be interested to know how much gas it is consuming and how much you took with you. Do you have any idea how many hours you have run it so far?
May the Canoe Gods watch over you all.
Regards, Geoff Allen

Just wondering how you upload text and images and what you use for power. When I spoke to Mike Peake a year ago he said you drag along a Honda generator. Do you still do this?
Keith Wilson
Director of News Operations, Citytv / CablePulse24

Re: The Generator. (Hi Keith). The Honda eu1000 generator (28 lbs) we took was a gem. It worked flawlessly and efficiently despite being humped around quite a bit. We took 15 litres of gas and had ample power with two litres to spare. The tank holds about 2 litres and would run for 4-6 hours depending on the load. In short, we could not have done the trip nearly so completely without it. -MP
Greetings from South-of-the-Border (the land of metric ignorance)!
Hello to you all Geoff, Micheal, et al. I read with envy of your experiences and your weather! It's going to be in the high 90'sF with ridiculous humidity (next best thing to rain) for the next few days here in Chicago. I could use some near freezing temperatures!
Sounds like the portage over the height of land was a real grind. How long was the total distance from take-out to put-in? Did you use poses along the way or just grunt it out from stop to stop?
Also, on the subject of bugs, how has you bug gear been working out? Do you use Woods bug jackets and pants or just the jackets? How rugged are they? How are they when it comes to trying to eat with the net on? We had low 80F temps (and more midwest humidity) on our recent BWCAW trip and suffered through our own version of "Invasion of the Body Snatchers". We would have loved to have good bug jackets, but how are they in hot weather? I know your current conditions aren't warm, but what has been your past experience? Will a full suit be tolerable over a T-shirt and shorts? Unfortunately, my paddling buddy's new job prevents him from getting free in late August as in the good old days. So our trips are restricted to July for the foreseeable future. For that reason, I'm seriously considering bug gear.
Also, after reading about the Dutch hikers/polar bear incident I have to ask, what do you do for food storage? I don't see many big strong trees in a lot of the pictures. Do you use bear canisters? What kind? Do you just trust to cleanliness? We used 60-litre barrels on our recent trip. The outfitter said we didn't have to hang them. The rangers who came for a visit weren't quite so confident. The barrels were not disturbed for the entire trip, but we didn't see much big wildlife either (no bear sign), so I don't know if they worked or not.
Thanks again for the (virtual) ride!
Keith Rundquist

Hi Keith, We use the "pose" system of portaging employed by the voyageurs. This means we would carry part way along a route - depending on it steepness - and return for the other load and leapfrog along.
The Woods bug jackets are great and quite rugged but they were overloaded. To properly canoe you need to be able to see the rapids without a bug net in front of your eyes to they were lifted up quite a bit which let the little devils in. The Woods jackets are well ventilated but of course they are much hotter than wearing nothing.
As for food, we really do nothing other than keep it away from the tents. No tree and no barrels, but we though about the latter. -MP

Here goes. Be advised, however, that my request for bright and dry weather in Battle Harbour and the Labrador Straits is still unacknowledged, and my trip there was last week.
Dear Minister of Weather:
Please be advised that there are a group of canoeists in the Torngat Mountains in Northern Labrador. As you can well appreciate, cooler weather would be of great assistance in making their travel easier. Canoeing and portaging in unseasonably warm weather can make for uncomfortable wilderness excursions in Labrador.
Therefore, I would please request that you turn the thermostat down to single digits for a day or two, but with minimal precipitation. A breeze sufficient to keep the flies at bay, but not too stiff to make canoeing awkward or dangerous, would also be appreciated.
cc. G. Peake, HACC, somewhere on the Korok River

If that is you Doris - many thanks. The cold weather held until Quebec - you should have presented a French request! - MP
Wow what an incredible journey you've all undertaken. I'm enjoying it very much but I got to admit I'm also scratching everyone of those single bug bites.
It seems that to some extent the trip has become a matter of endurance rather then enjoyment.
Knowing what you do now, isn't hindsight wonderful, would you do anything differently in your planning of this trip such as doing it later in the summer or earlier for that matter?
Keep safe and may there be a nice, cooling breeze in your faces the rest of the way home.
Thanks for a wonderful journey.

Hi Merrie, The trip was planned to catch the weather and the water. The Labrador coast is calmer in July and the Korok River gets very low in August. We only had bugs once we reached the Korok and the temps soared. - MP
I have been watching your trip since the beginning. Having spent some time in Southern Labrador this summer I can appreciate the bug situation. I have a map but cannot figure out which river is the Palmer as the rivers are not named. If you could give me the direction of flow. It looks like a fantastic trip.
Good Luck
Ed Blackmore, Nfld Forest Service, Gander

Hi Ed, it flows in to the southwest arm of Nachvak Fjord and is only 30 km long.
I was just wondering.... Are the hats that Geoffery and Sean wear (the ones with the red pom-pom) Queen's University tams?
Ps. Great Pictures
Mark McQueen

Not exactly. They are a regulation Scottish tam worn by a couple of queens! -MP
Hello fellas, I'm one of four guys that slept where you now sleep only in 1978. When we arrived in George River it was Labour Day and everyone save Johnny Itok was there and his wife cooked up three chickens,baked potatoes veggies you name it. If you can say hi to him for me perhaps his wife'll have a couple of chickens. I was almost sick from eating chocolate bars in Chimo...we all lost a lot of weight. If you wanted trip reports all you had to do was ask :o)
We are preparing a reunion trip this year, flying into Border Becon and paddling the Adlitok for a month, up Harp Lake and lots of walking for our old bones.
We depart Goose Bay Aug 29th.
All the luck in the world, it was great seeing the Palmer photos it brought back a lot of memories.
Bill Ritchie

Hi Bill, Yup, it is a tough trip, but incredibly rewarding. I lost a few kilos but I hear they are already looking for me! We never did make it to George River though. Good luck with your trip. Tell Dr. Loring I wold love his feedback on our trip
I'm madly packing for a canoe trip, we're heading off to the Ashuapmushuan River in Quebec. I peeked at your website for a break to remind me that packing is worth it once you get on the river. I just had to write to you about your photograph!
Reid and I looked at your 360 Palmer River picture this morning and were totally blown away with the picture quality, the photograph and looking around and around and zooming in and out. Wow!!!!! I'm starting to understand that you guys really aren't off your gourds lugging all that heavy techy stuff with you! I've never seen such an amazing still photograph profile our beautiful Canadian land as in that 360 degrees shot.
Your photographing thumbnails are gems too! The captions really help to give the feeling what your trippers are feeling and where you are.
I've been reading here and there your trip logs and guides through out your trip and have found them fascinating. But I was wondering if you crazy canucks were aware that canoes work much better above freezing Eeeeeek!!! -12 wind chill.
I wish you all a safe passage in that rugged land you've chosen to journey through.
Becky Mason

Becky, Comments like that made the loads much lighter. I will give a full breakdown of the QTVR process in the next issue of Che-Mun. Hope you and Reid have a great trip. I am going back on my gourd now! - MP
Sorry to read about the unfriendly weather conditions and tough portage terrain. I know being holed up in the tents for a long period to wait out conditions is a little bit wearing on the nerves after the first 18 hours. Then there is the dreaded anticipation of getting up, packing up in the wet and on with it, despite the weather. Builds character, eh?! Wish you drier weather and more friendly "walking" terrain, ....... soon.
Certainly you have had enough overland experience by now on the trip so, ......... How do you like the Woods Canoe Packs compared to other newer stuff available on the market these days, e.g., Serratus and much touted Sealine (rubber) canoe packs? The Woods is a classic ( I was introduced to it and the tumpline as a novice back the 60s) and you have to be clever to waterproof the contents (orange plastic garbage bags triple tied up as a liner or a wet sleeping bag, eh?) and after all, Woods is one of your sponsors, but ..........I'd like your opinion on whether "the "old standby" meets or exceeds your needs and expectations? Does tried and true make the grade?
Keep smiling, the pointy end of the boat in front and the open side up.
John S. Langan, London, ON

John, We have used Woods packs for 25 years and will continue to do so. We carry all our food and gear and they are very tough and we use the tumpline system of carrying. However for our clothing and we used the Serratus canoe pack which is very high quality. I don't have experience with the rubber ones but basically people should use what they like and what works for them. -MP
Have you seen any signs of the long abandoned Torngat Golf & Country Club yet? I've heard rumours of it, but no one's ever found it...
A big hello from Nelson, BC, and hi especially to Geoff, who I spoke to only days before his departure.
I've been following your trip on the website with great interest. I spent a week last summer in the McCormick River valley, just to the east of the Tallek Arm, and looking at your photos and reading your reports leaves me daydreaming in a bad way. What I wouldn't give to be back there now!
Have you seen any wolves yet?
Have you run into any people? I somehow doubt it. There's a funny Austrian guy named Alfred who spends his summers kayaking around up there, supplied by a guy out of Nain.
The Torngats blew my mind when I was there, as I am sure they are yours. The view constantly beckoned me. I yearned to hike up every valley and climb up every mountain, always wondering what was over the horizon. I'm sure you guys are having a similar experience.
Have you found any similarities between the Torngat mountains and the mountains on Baffin Island? I sometimes wonder if they are related?
Your trip has me reminiscing about those great thoughts one has when you're a long, long way from home... like those moments when you're picking up the last pack and you look where you've been and think that it's going to be a long time before someone comes this way again.
Then there are moments on trips when you're alone, and you look around and think profound things like "whoa".
You guys are so fortunate to experience over and over again the solitude of this place. It's a great privilege to see places so unchanged by humans, places where humans are rare visitors. You guys are like ships in the night, passing through without a trace. Let's hope that this area remains that way.
I think I'm getting a bit flaky now.
You have my sympathy for the blackflies! I'll do a bugdance for you and pray for the wind in your face.
Congratulations on reaching the height of land!
May the water levels be just right.
Chris Rowat, Nelson

Chris, nice letter. The Torngats are geologically related to the Baffin Island ranges and both are incredibly rugged and beautiful. We saw no one until we met an Inuit family at the end of the Korok. You're right, we are very lucky to inhale such a huge piece of wilderness and revel in its solitude for several weeks. We need these wild places for our souls and spirits. -MP
Hi Padddddlers: Am enjoying your journey this year. Fascinating!!! A question I would like to ask is, after those delicious meals prepared for you, what is the first one you ask for when you get back?
A few years ago, as my husband and I reached the senior level, we took a three week bus trip. A very pleasant and informative journey, but oh how we tired of three meals a day in restaurants. When we arrived home our first meal was a bowl of porridge. That became our Saturday breakfast there after.
Miss Rev. Peter Scott this trip.

Gladys, We all missed Peter Scott. And food fantasies are a part of any northern trip. Myself, I will look forward to a big brunch of fried tomatoes, bacon, thick and crusty toast and fresh peaches. - MP
Geoffrey Peake mention Eric Morse and Sigurd Olsen in 'Guide's report' Friday, Jul 27. Caused me to by 6 of Olsen books [the full quota of Borders bookstore down the road]. Just wonderful. Thanks for sharing the experiences and inspirations of HACC with the rest of the world!
Herman Kuun, Columbus, OHIO

Herman, The group known as The Voyageurs and headed by Sig Olson are our inspiration. They set the pattern for the type of trips we do and we are forever indebted to them. Sig's book The Lonely Land tells the tale of their 1955 trip down the Churchill River in northern Saskatchewan. In 1985, our group named a river in Nunavut after Eric Morse. - MP
Pictures were awesome. One thing though, I've never hiked/canoed in a region with polar bears. Aren't they carnivorous? Won't they want to take a piece out of you?
-Kevin Rodkin

Hi Kevin, The answer is yes. That's why we carried a shotgun.
Couple of questions.
When you speak of "lining" the canoes is this when you are outside of them guiding down the edge of rapids?
Why were there no bugs before you started down the Korok? Was it the temperature difference or because there were no trees back in Labrador?
Really, REALLY have enjoyed virtually traveling along with you guys! Especially the first two thirds of the voyage. After the problem with the next to last portage on the Palmer it all seemed to lose its magic what with all the bugs and the time constraints. Was this the case with you? What were your individual high lights? Ice bergs and polar bears?
Rob, Toronto

Rob - Lining is essentially guiding down a rapid but WAY more tricky than it may sounds. It is an art only learned through much practice. With regard to the bugs, the ocean was the main reason -- cooler air combined with lack of vegetation.
The Korok section was a pain with the bugs but we believe in telling people the real story. It is not a PR machine. Yes, trips sometimes have less than pleasant parts. But rest assured, the bad stuff melts away in time.

Checking your website has been a daily ritual. I was a member of the Scouts in my younger days and have recently and slowly got back into the outdoors thing. I must say that your stories and pictures have rekindled a feeling of adventure in me. Thanks.
Is the radar site near Hebron still in use and can you land without permission at the runway?
Is there lots of caribou still hanging around in the grasses of Hebron fjord?
Did you or do you plan on visiting the Hebron missionary site?
When does the sun set now or does it?
Greg Bridges, Calais, Maine

The Saglek North Warning site can only be used with permission and that was obtained through air Labrador. We unfortunately did not get to Hebron which was a pity, because of lost time due to weather. The sun was setting around 10 p.m.
I have been trying to contact the weather guy for two days here, but it just seems to get hotter! I'll swap a Superior 2001 T-Shirt for a Labrador 2001 T-shirt.
I have a story to tell you guys sometime about getting behind and trying to get a ride. We got a helicopter ride (OPP) out of the North French River four years ago. It is this damn life back here that keeps interfering with these canoe trips. Getting four days behind wouldn't be a big deal, if you didn't have to earn $ to take the next trip.
Best regards,
John Clement and Crew (JOPCC), Toledo, Ohio
Well, lads, I've really enjoyed reading about your trip. By my reckoning, you're either in the air headed home right now or fogbound in Hudson Bay.
You've opened up some eyes to the wonder of northern Labrador. I've been as far north as Hopedale on the coast, but now long to get further (Saglak would be neat and Nachvak even better).
I note that most of your black fly horror stories occur on the Quebec side. You must have missed the Labrador air force.
At any rate, thanks for the journals and photos and best wishes on your trip home.
Peter Morris, St. John's, Newfoundland
It's been fun following your trip on-line and it's bringing back a lot of memories. In 1978, myself and 3 others canoed from Nachvak Fiord up the Palmer and down the Korok to George River, but we took 2-months, including lots of side explorations. More anon and good thoughts.
Chuck Luckmann

Chuck, I look forward to hearing from my Che-Mun subscriber Dr. Loring about your great trip 23 years ago. We needed more time, that's for sure! Have a great trip with the rest of the gang later this month. - MP
I am one of the X Center managers and am glad to see that you had a great odyssey and safe journey. Your time at CJ was an inspiration to many youth and scouting adults and I am pleased to review your trip on the internet. Thanks once again for your time at the Jamboree and I look forward to many other expeditions.
Kim Derry CJ 2001

Hi Kim, great to hear we had some impact on the kids. The jamboree was a fun event. -MP
I just discovered you on our Woods Website. I'm president of Sport Sales, Inc. We are the reps for Woods Canada in the upper Midwest of the USA. I was an avid canoe camper in our BWCA before it became overcrowded. I enjoy wilderness camping and especially camp cooking. I will enjoy following your current adventure and get my wilderness experience "vicariously." I do have a question. I am looking at the photo of Geoffrey Peake and his black fly bites. Why was he not wearing his Woods "Don't Bug Me" shirt? I realize it doesn't make for much of a photo op.
I would also like to hear any feedback you have on the Woods gear you used.
Hope your weather improves.
Great Website!
Wm "Bill jr." Reichert
President, Sport Sales, Inc.

Bill, We LIVED in our Woods bug jackets however, when descending an exceptionally rocky river one needs to get out from behind the mesh and see the rocks clearly. We also don't like to cover ourselves in bug dope - although less so than before. Our Woods packs and jackets were great along with our fleece jackets and bags. The Coppermine tent also worked well, though we had few big winds. - MP
Email the paddlers with your questions and comments