The most common question I am asked is, “What’s Next?” Given the current reports of the veracity of the black fly population in Labrador this summer, my most frequent answer at the moment is, “Bug Bait.” I can’t believe how quickly the summer is passing and that we’re on a seven day countdown to our canoe expedition on the Kanairiktok River in Labrador. Given my experience of the black flies in 2011 on the Notakwanon River which was “a good year for bugs,” I suspect I’ll be spending much of my time in “my happy place,” my bug jacket once again.
We will be flying via float-equipped Twin Otter to Lake Shipiskan and paddling the Kanairiktok River all the way to the sea and then 70 kilometres along the Labrador coast until we reach Hopedale. We’ll then take the coastal boat back to Goose Bay.
The Kanairiktok River is the longest river in Labrador at 355 km in length. It is known for huge canyons, exciting rapids, and the f-world…falls. There will be five sets of water falls that we will portage around. If we are lucky, we may catch a glimpse of black bear, timber wolf, moose, woodland caribou or wolverine. We are sincerely hoping to not see any polar bear along the coast or anywhere on the trip for that matter (we don’t want to be lunch). It is a river that seldom sees paddlers and I look forward to the privilege of another deep wilderness experience in Labrador once again.
We are paddling with our George River turned Churchill River companions: George, Lew, Joe and Paul. This will be our fourth trip together and I look forward to spending time in the woods with such a skilled team. Days on the river will be long and tough but we’ll rest and recover around the campfire each night. Joe, George, and I have been busy running our dehydrators getting all of the meals ready for the trip. We’ll paddle hard but eat very well!
If all goes as planned, we’ll be flying to our put-in on August 1. I’ll be posting SPOT and audio updates from the trip so please follow along on this latest adventure! We’d love to have you!