Episode 7: The Torngat Diaries

Life in Base Camp is extremely different from any other experience that I’ve tried before. Obviously, it’s not like being in a town, and it’s not like going camping, even though many tents are ready in the field close to the shore of Saglek Bay.

The first thing that strikes me is the electrified fence with its 10,000 volts. The camp is enclosed to protect us from curious wildlife wondering in. At 10 p.m. every night the fence is activated for overnight safety, during the day it’s off and the bear guards are on stand-by! Here in Base Camp rules are very important for safety; in fact, as soon as we arrive Crystal Webb takes us on a tour and shows us a video on what to and what NOT to do during a bear encounter.

Everything here has to work perfectly, and it does—like a finely tuned Swiss watch. The whole crew is extremely prepared, professional and very friendly. I feel like I’m at home. Our hosts don't shake our hands, they hug! This is something that made me feel part of the community right away.

I meet Gary Baikie, Sebastien Caty, Jobie Unatweenuk, Andrew Andersen and Eli Merkuratsuk, who will be helping and guiding us, each in their own capacity, through our Torngat adventure. We get together and peruse maps while discuss the details of our Torngat Park trek. As it turns out, the hike will be a completely different experience for me, but I will only discover that once in the field.

At the end of our meeting, a little signal goes on to advise us that the bear fence is on. We leave the tent to go for a bite, but I feel compelled to go and see the fjord—I am not disappointed. The sunset is amazing! After a full day of travel and work, I still can't think of going to bed. There is a landscape here with a perfect light, just waiting for my lens!