It’s almost midnight, you’re somewhere you don’t know from Timbuktu, and all you want to do is check in to this comfortable-looking hotel and get some sleep, before embarking on some adventures tomorrow. But as you reach into your pocket for your passport you feel a sickening drop of your heart as your fingers close around nothing but empty space…… Read More >
Imagine you are sitting in something that looks somewhat like the seat and roll cage from a race car, without the race car around it. Imagine you are hanging from a cable 15 feet above the ground. Imagine you begin to pedal, which propels you slowly through the trees, the ground falling away until you are 60 feet or more above the ground. Imagine that it is peaceful, the only sounds made by the breeze rustling the trees, some birds chirping, and the occasional squirrel squeaking. Imagine that all you can see are the treetops surrounding you and perhaps the next rider, depending on your location along the one-kilometre trail. Imagine that the only sensation is the gentle swaying of your pod and the occasional bump as it runs over a connection in the cable.
Now imagine you have vertigo or are scared of heights. That was me exactly. Read More >
This morning Manitobans woke up to a temperature of -25oC (-13oF), with a windchill of -37oC (-35oF). So cold. Not as cold as it can be or has been, but still cold enough that it freezes your face almost the instant you step outside. Your eyelashes freeze together and even though you’re wearing a base layer and lined pants, your thighs feel like they are getting cut up by tiny ice particles. It sure is pretty though. Read More >
Hey there! We would like to invite you for dinner!
Sounds great – when would you like to go?
What are you doing in March?
Um, I don’t know? That’s pretty far in advance.
Well, this place is pretty spectacular and reservations fill up fast.
Sure, I can mark it on my calendar so I don’t book anything else that day – when is it?
Well, that’s the thing. It’s Monday, March 5th, but you won’t be home until the 6th.
I’ve never heard of dinner taking two days…
It’s actually 1000 km North of Winnipeg. I have already made you a plane reservation on CalmAir.
I am intrigued. A thousand km north of Winnipeg? Like Churchill?
Yes, but dinner is not actually in Churchill.
We have to go somewhere else?
Yes, a tundra buggy is going to come and pick us up and head out of town.
Cool so we are going to eat sandwiches in a tundra buggy.
No, in a tent.
What? A tent – isn’t the temperature about -20C?
It’s about -21C today, but the tent will be warm because it’s inside a massive 250-year stone fort.
So let me get all this straight. We are having dinner – in a tent – inside a fort – reached by a truck called a Tundra Buggy – after taking a 2-hour flight north from Winnipeg. Anything else I should know?
Oh, the tent is clear so we can watch the Northern Lights dance across the sky, in a location that NASA says is the best on the planet.
This is an amazing surprise. Do I even ask what is for dinner?
Actually, it’s a surprise. Chef Mandel Hitzer, from the celebrated Winnipeg restaurant Raw: Almond, will prepare a dinner inspired by the type of ingredients that explorers, adventurers and First Nations folks would have used in their meals 250 years ago while at the Prince of Wales Fort.
Ok! I’m fired up and ready to go!
One last thing: don’t wear heels.
I woke up at 6:09 according my phone clock. I pack up what belongings I have taken out and head off to the shower. A push of the button gives you 2 minutes of hot water. It’s their way of conserving the water that needs to be brought in (and out) from town.
I got dressed and put on my fuzzy slippers and make my way to the lounge car. Not many people are awake yet, so I find myself a table and a cup of coffee and enjoy the views outside the window. As people trickle in, the volume gets louder and the space becomes full of people. Breakfast of french toast and bacon is served. And coffee. There is always coffee. Read More >
Day two on the sub-arctic terrain and there’s a snow storm! Flights were grounded, but we were nice and cozy warm in the Tundra Buggy Lodge and then later on the Tundra Buggy… until someone spots a bear or bird or fox and opens the window so they can try and get that great photo. Even through the snow, you can see the amazing life hunkering down in the snow. Read More >
I’m going to go see some polar bears. This is going to be such an amazing adventure. It is odd, however, to think we are to embark on an adventure of a lifetime to a place where a 4L jug of milk is three times more expensive than it is where I buy milk. I’ve never been to such a remote place and have no idea what to expect, other than the fact that I will probably get less sleep these next two nights than I should. Who knows! Polar bears may be sleeping under my window, or the northern lights may be dancing above my head. I’m stoked.
How should you spend less than 48hrs in Kelowna you may ask? By visiting as many wineries as you possibly can while also enjoying fine dinning and keeping active on a cross-city bike tour, of course!
I see the tundra expanding before me! Like Eric Carle’s famous book series, the north is full of amazing sights and sounds of nature, connected in some way. It truly is an opportunity of a lifetime to fly up to this part of Canada and see these creatures you may only read about or see in zoos.
This unforgettable journey lived up to being ‘One of National Geographic Traveller’s 50 Tours of a Lifetime’. This is an ‘expedition style’ vessel with almost daily zodiac treks and cannot be compared to other passenger cruise ships.