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Guide's Report

By Geoffrey Peake

Amazing day of paddling

Sunday, July 15, 2001


Campsite:   Bear’s Gut Bay    58º 44.16’N, 62º 56.73’W

Barometer: 30.04 inches

Distance travelled: 45 km.

We are camped tonight in a remarkable site — The Bear’s Gut resembles an alpine lake — mountains rise sheer from the water,, and patches of snow line the shore and gullies of the hills.   We pulled in here at 11 pm, so I’m sure you’ll understand why I’m not going to write a lot tonight.

Today was an amazing day of paddling — the weather has been about as idyllic as you’re ever likely to find up here.   There is a certain surreal sense to the landscape when the weather is this good.   The mountains and valleys — even the icebergs — have a certain simplistic purity to them, you almost feel as if you are paddling through a dream.

Because we have no way of knowing just how long this weather will last, were taking every opportunity to maximize our distance.The wind came up a bit in the afternoon and we stopped and had an early dinner so that we could paddle into the evening.   We paddled for over three hours, until the last light had faded from the hills and was replaced with a soft alpenglow.   The coastline we passed is nearly all cliff here — mountains rise almost sheer to nearly 2000 feet   and there are no places to camp, let alone stop.   The rocks themselves are worthy of a day’s description — they have been pounded into a myriad of patterns and shapes.   Dark bands of basalt have been worn away, creating large chimneys that rise from the water’s edge.

We were all pretty tired by the time we unloaded the boats and made camp.   The shoreline is a bit rocky and we had to climb well up to find flat ground for the tents. The view up here is stunning, though.    We’ll have to be up again fairly early tomorrow — two more days of travel should have us into Nachvak Fiord, where we will leave the Labrador Sea. I for one will be able to relax when that happens.   For now I’m off to bed….

360 pix

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