Day 62

Qamanaarjuk Lake to Aleksektok Rapids

Distance: 65 km – [cumulative total 1376 km]

InReach: Day 62 Paddled Shultz Lk, last big lake Camped at Aleksektok Rapids, will run them tomorrow Baker Lk now 1. 5 days away Caught 1st Arctic Char

Camp: 64.745°N 96.865°W

Grey skies greeted us this morning and persisted all day. It was a long days paddle, we started with a strong tail wind but a few hours later the wind had all but disappeared. By lunch time we were half way across the main body of Schultz Lake and after a total of eleven hours paddling we had left the lake and were at the camp site directly across from our final rapid, Aleksektok Falls. This is the same camp site we used on the Dubawnt trip four years ago.

The last ten kilometres we were back in the Thelon and we were seeing patches of remnant snow in crevices along the banks, we also had the benefit of great current assistance. John tried a few casts to get us fish and to his satisfaction he caught an Arctic Char. This makes three varieties of fish we have enjoyed. Just before we camped we saw three sandhill cranes, they appeared to be an adult and two juveniles and were unperturbed by our presence. We are now off the large lakes and with only one rapid and about ninety kilometres to go. Baker Lake is finally starting to feel like a much needed reality.

Sandhill cranes through a haze of blackflies!

Arctic Char, caught in fast water where the Thelon exits Schultz Lake

Arctic Char fillets, the meat turns pink, like salmon when cooked