Northwest Territories – The Land That Lures You

There are some places in this world that hold special places in our hearts. A place that heals us, rejuvenates us and sets us free. These places seem to hold an energizing power over us like none other. Perhaps it is because we match the vibration of the land. Or, perhaps it has been such a part of our life that it seems to be ingrained in our being. Continue reading “Northwest Territories – The Land That Lures You”

Fresh Rose Hip Tea Foraged In -40 Below

There is nothing like pure organic ingredients freshly harvested from the earth. It really can’t be beat. You wouldn’t think there are very many colorful berries that can be found to be picked when it is a beyond balmy -49c. If that is what you think then you would also be spot on! Although if you look hard enough and with a keen eye, you will always be pleasantly surprised at what is on offer.

20171228_145734

Rose Hips are one of those little gems that you can find frozen in place and just waiting to be picked. Cold and yearning to be put in a hot glass of water. Seriously, it’s written all over them. It is actually a lot of fun picking berries in the winter. Not gonna lie! Even though it was beyond frozen to the bone cold, running around and foraging berries for fresh tea felt very rewarding.

Anytime you get outside and put the work in to gather and forage your food and ingredients, it always brings your appreciation and value for what you have way up!

I literally only needed a handful to make solo tea for 1.

Snapshot 5 (2017-12-28 11-04 PM)

 

When your making Rose Hip tea you want to make sure to leave the berries whole, as not to ingest the hairs of the seeds, they can cause some digestive problems. Which also means when you eat a Rose Hip, you just eat the outside of the berry and not the inside.

It only took a few minutes for the berries to begin steeping.

Rose Hips offer a wide variety of health benefits. Here are some, just to name a few. 

  • They are chocked full of Vitamin C. Like seriously little Vitamin C powerhouses. They actually contain 60% more vitamin C then oranges.
  • They promote good blood circulation, especially when in the form of tea.
  • They help lower blood pressure.
  • They promote radiant skin.
  • They are very high in anti-oxidants. Rose hips contain carotenoids, flavonoids, and polyphenols, which eliminate or neutralize free radicals found within the body.
  • They boost immunity.
  • They aid in digestion.

When I was young I would go berry picking with my grandma, and we would pick buckets of rose hips, and she would make jars and jars of rose hip jelly. What I wouldn’t do for a jar of that right now. Yummm – is all I have to say. Healthy tastes so good.

I ended up having some other tea which was also collected from various plants in the Northwest Territories. I Figured they would meld well together, and I was right. I love keeping it as local as possible no matter where in the world I am.

20171228_152457

The tea was divine, healing, and just what the doctor ordered on an extremely cold winters day.

Snapshot 6 (2017-12-28 11-04 PM)

It is just a reminder that you should always go after what you want. There may be a bit of obstacles in the way, but what you want is there just waiting for you to come and get it. Happy, healthy, healing and endless awesome vibes to you.

 

Relishing In The Unique Beauty Of Early Winter In The NWT

With Winter having arrived in its early stages, there is always this unique and stunning beauty of the area around Hay River, NWT. Being built on the shores of the ninth largest lake in the world, the Great Slave Lake, and in very close proximity to a few different waterfalls – the ice always freezes over.

As it is still the early stages, the freeze is not totally complete yet. I absolutely love appreciating the abundance of beauty this area has to offer all year round. With each changing season, the beauty alters to another unique state.

With the weather being so mild, I decided it was the perfect day to go on some ‘me time’ adventures, and do a bit of cruising. One of my favorite past times in life is my solo adventures, and going on scenic drives. I figured I would go to the beach and check out the lake before heading out to Alexandra Falls.

The beach was so pristine and tranquil.

20171112_133310.jpg

With a thin sheet of ice blanketing the top, no wind, and not a sound other then my shoes crunching in the snow to be heard. It was incredible. Moments like that totally sooth the soul.

20171112_132949.jpg

In the distance not far out you could still see a bit of water where the ice has not covered yet. It will not take very long to be totally covered with the cold snap that is due to come in.

I was feeling so relaxed on this peaceful walk, it was one of those soul soothing moments for sure.

IMG_20171112_175934_968.jpg

 

I hit the road towards Alexandra falls after I was done frolicking on the beach. A nice 40 minute drive. The snow was lightly falling, and it added to the early winter feel. Cruising on the highway and being in my thoughts is another very relaxing place for me to be.

As I was walking on the trail to the falls viewing point I could already hear water flowing, so I knew the falls were not frozen over yet. I was so pleasantly surprised with the showcase that the falls had on display.

20171112_143956.jpg

Half frozen, half flowing. Such a stunning contrast. It is one of those things that you can get lost in. It is so easy to just sit and stare, and listen to the sounds, it becomes mesmerizing. Well it’s without a doubt healing and soul soothing.

There was beauty to be appreciated from all angles.

20171112_144017.jpg

I took it in as long as I could before getting a chill. The wind out there was a bit nippy.

Seriously though, the sights here never get old. Growing up here, I must have done the tour hundreds of times, and yet, every time is better then the last. It is never boring or run of the mill, instead it always just makes me feel so darn amazing.

 

I highly suggest getting the North on your bucket list.

If you are interested in veiwing my YouTube Video of the excursion you can check that out here.

Top 5 Sights To See In A Day Trip To Wood Buffalo National Park

Wood Buffalo National Park is one of the biggest parks on the planet, sprawling over 44, 807sq km of sheer natural beauty. It spreads between Northern Alberta and Southern Northwest Territories. The park was found in 1922 in order to protect the worlds largest free roaming wood bison, with the population believed to be over 5000 at this moment. The park is also home to a nesting site of whooping cranes.

I had toured around the park when I was taken there on a school trip in elementary, however that was quite some time ago now(not that you would ever guess). It had been on my adult bucket list to go and visit it once again for many years.

What amazed me was that some of the places that I remembered, looked exactly as I envisioned and recalled them. One could say, ‘Just as beautiful as I remembered’. There was that and the discovery of new places that I didn’t know existed.

The town of Fort Smith, Northwest Territories is known as the gateway to Wood Buffalo National Park. Located in Southern NWT, its a charming little town that is well worth exploring on its own. So in reality this is also on the list of top sights to see. You can’t really enter the park without entering Fort Smith.

Once your in, if you only have a day to tour around here are the top 5 sights to see that are easily accessible, and each uniquely beautiful.

  1. The Hamlet of Fort Fitzgerald

Fort Fitzgerald is literally a settlement, it is located on the NWT/Alberta border and is the most Northern hamlet in the regional municipality of Wood Buffalo. With only approximately 9 people residing there, it is for sure one of the smallest communities I have visited.

 

This little hamlet was a unexpected diamond waiting for me to discover it. The river is huge, and is basically the back yard of the community.

IMG_6324

IMG_6326img_0048
Absolutely worth checking out if you are in the area.

 

2. Mountain Portage Rapids

In the area of Fort Smith there are plenty of rapids to play in or just appreciate from a shoreline view. Of those, the Mountain Portage Rapids are some of the most easily accessible.

mountain portage

Just a little trip down a steep hill and you will arrive.

 

Whether you want to get in or enjoy the sandy shores which make for a beachy feel, it’s a fantastic spot to enjoy.

smithrapidsrapids2
Although my visit was cut short due to a bear encounter. Not just A bear, but a mama bear and her three cubs. Let’s just say, the shore line became a distant memory pretty darn quick. A gentle reminder to always be bear aware in these areas. Made for some good adrenaline for the day.

 

3. Take A Dip In the Turquoise Water At Pine Lake

Located 60 km from Fort Smith in the middle of the Boreal Forest is a hidden gem called Pine Lake. The water is the bluest I have ever put my eyes on in the North.

img_0085img_0084img_0083
It was created by a series of 3 sinkholes, and is a getaway destination for the residents of Fort Smith. There are campsites, cabin rentals and plenty of picnic spots in the area. You can also enjoy kayaking, canoeing, as well as swimming(watch out for leeches though).

img_0135
I booked us a table for lunch….. You coming??

This is a MUST visit spot if you are in the area. The campground is open from May long weekend to September labour day weekend. So get your wiener roasters ready and head on out.

4. Visit The Sea Of Salt Crusted Ground At The Salt Plains

img_0118IMG_6338

When you stand on the crystal like ground looking to the vast flat expanse of the salt covered ground, you can’t help but be in awe.

img_0119img_0121
The Salt Plains were created from ancient seas, that left behind saline water in which pushed the salt to the surface.

salt plains

At times you can see wood bison grazing on the plains, or even whooping cranes. When you look at the ground beneath you, you can observe the myriad of animal tracks left behind.

salt plains2

There is an energy to this place that is undeniable – you can run and frolic in the open air of the plains, and if if your feeling adventurous you can give the ground a little lick. Trust me – it’s salty.

img_0129

 

5. Observe The Wood Bison In Their Natural Habitat

Clearly when you are in Wood Buffalo National Park, you must keep your eyes peeled to see the buffalo. I think that is a given. Although it’s not hard as they are all over the place and do tend to enjoy hanging out on and beside the highways.

img_0043IMG_4319

These very large and majestic creatures are something to be appreciated, and seeing them up close and personal are something you won’t soon forget. It adds the extra magic to your unforgettable visit to the park.

It is amazing what you can accomplish in day in this park. Although a day just doesn’t seem like enough, it is more like a warm up for my next lengthy visit. Wood Buffalo National Park – Get it on your bucket list.

 

It Was A Walk In The Bush

February in Northwest Territories usually means -30 degree Celsius temperatures, and 10 layers of clothing to protect from the very real potentials of frost bit and freezing to death. However this year the weather has been so unpredictable and up and down, every week we have something else. Lately it even go in the the plus temperatures. Of course that’s pretty awesome if you want to go on a nice bush hike and be out in nature. Not sure if its best for the environment up here though.

That being said, it was an absolutely stunning and warm day, so I decided the best way to spend it would be hiking out in the bush, and seeing what mother nature had on offer this particular day.

bush1

The surroundings themselves are absolutely beautiful. Winter wonderland is the exact description I would use.

The snow was pretty deep in lots of area’s, every time I would take a step, it would go straight over the top and straight into my boot.

booter-2

Just your typical ‘Snow booter’, no big deal… Scoop that right on out and keep trucking along. Ok, well it was a bit of a chilly deal after the 10th one, not gonna lie.

The scenic view kept changing, which kept the walk enthralling.

bush2-2

We are so lucky in this area of the world that one of the most sought after medicinal mushrooms in the world grows wild. The Chaga mushroom.

There is an ample supply of birch trees here, in which host the Chaga mushrooms. Chaga mushrooms have the highest number of antioxidants of any food, incredible immune boosting properties, anti-inflammatory, as well as anti-viral and cholesterol  lowering effects to name a few. It is a powerhouse of a healer, that’s for darn sure.

When your out on the land here, it’s always prime time to do some Chaga hunting.

We were not super successful this day, but we did find some. There are times you find a area covered with Chaga. Even finding a nice chunk is awesome, and you can cut it off and take it to make some super healing tea. Yum! Health taste’s so good.

I also came across a spruce tree that was oozing with sap.

sap1-2

Alright, well perhaps I should say it had oozed with sap, as the sap was hard. When I was a child growing up in the bush, I spent quite a lot of time out on the land a lot. I always loved chewing on spruce sap, I called it tree gum and/or bush gum. It is also full of healing qualities and vitamins, as it comes straight out of the tree, it kinda like tree blood.

I was pretty excited when I found the sap, and straight away cut a piece off and tucked right in.

I love the taste! It definitely has an earthy taste, similar to a tea, however I love those types of flavors. I suppose because I grew up with them, so my pallet is  accustomed to them. Of course a few beautiful flashbacks from my childhood came flooding in – which was absolutely wonderful in and of itself. This day had proved a be a massive success, and probably one of the best ideas ever.

Let’s not forget one very important detail. Being a lover of grounding and tree hugging, there was absolutely no way I could be out there without giving a tree a hug.

The energy exchange is undeniable, and the healing benefits are amazing. Nature always fills my soul.

After a couple hours of adventuring around, we decided to head back and end this nature filled day the only way that seemed to be the cherry on top. A good ol’ bonfire.

 

Not before taking in the spectacular sunset though.

sunset-2

It was such a fabulous day out in pure blissful nature, it was too great not to share.

What can I say, don’t underestimate the soul soothing, energy topping abundance of a day in mother natures playground. Get out there and go bask in it. Heck yes to being awesome in nature!

Northern Canadian Class – Dining In Style At ‘The Back Eddy’

Classy dining around the globe is a hobby that I take very seriously. Enticing the palette with incredible and unique flavors and food pairings, all while surrounded in a comfortable chic atmosphere – is exactly what I am after when dining out. I am continually on the hunt to find the best and most amazing places to experience and share around the world. It’s an art that one can’t help but appreciate.

Here in the hub of the North – Hay River, NWT, there happens to be one of my absolute life long favorites. The Back Eddy. They always provide an unforgettable experience, and the dishes will never disappoint.  Having been in business for over 40 years,  it is clear there are many things being done right here.

The decor of The Back Eddy reflects a nautical theme, adorned with helms, and various pieces from ships.

Hay River has been a port for shipping and barging for many years, so it was very fitting for The Back Eddy to take on this theme. The name is derived from an ‘Eddy’, which is a whirl of water, and in this case, ‘Back Eddy’, intended to represent the whirl of water created by the back of the ship.

img_4068

The original owner of The Back Eddy also created what’s called, Back Eddy Spice, which is still sprinkled in quite a few dishes on the menu to this day, as well as sold in many stores. It’s a Back Eddy staple. The Back Eddy has now been family run by some pretty phenomenal people for the last 16 years.

The atmosphere is inviting and very relaxing. Particularly now with all of their festive decorations making the place feel ‘oh so magical’.

Each month they feature different lunch and dinner specials, as well as a monthly dessert(made in house).

img_5376

The majority of their dishes are all made from scratch in house and with plenty of love, so you are guaranteed to always have a fresh flavorful experience.

One of my absolute favorite dishes of theirs is the ceaser salad. Nothing fancy, but they make their own dressing, and it is sooo darn good. I can eat it every day. In fact, when I am home every year, I pretty much do eat it every day. I have yet to find another around the globe that compares.

This time around on our ladies of leisure dinner, rather then one of their tantalizing menu items, we were after one of their other classics. Hot Rocks.

Hot Rocks are just that, heated marble slabs, that you get to cook your own food on, right at your table.

img_5258

It’s seriously a lot of delicious fun. They come out already nicely heated and then you place them on the flames to keep the sizzle going.

img_5256

You have the choice between meat rocks, seafood rocks or a combo of both. We decided to go for the combo rocks which included, Lobster, Prawns, Chicken and Beef, along with plenty of various veggies.

img_5259

The platter is very abundantly stocked, and has a fabulous array of house made butters and dips. So you absolutely will no be going home hungry – better bring those stretchy pants.

First thing was first though. I needed to prepare my palette by getting the vino flowing(lets not forget who we are talking about here). It’s simply the classy lady way to begin any culinary journey. For a small Northern establishment they do have quite a good little selection of Vino to choose from. I opted for a Rose, a nice inbetween of white and red.

With hot rocks, your act of having dinner truly turns into an experience. It so nice to share fabulous food, great chat, and good drinks all while being surrounded by an extremely comfortable environment. It’s the best way, and always creates it to be nothing less then memorable.

img_5277

You won’t forget how full you were in the end either. Good thing the seats have wheels on them – in case you can’t get up and need to be wheeled out. Isn’t that a classy mental picture?!

The Back Eddy truly is a Northern Gem, and it only gets better with age. That’s right, just like a fine wine. If you find yourself in Northwest Territories, and particularly in the Hay River area, make sure you stop in and enjoy some Northern class and true North hospitality. Cheers to keeping the palette adventures going!

Chasing Beauty In The Northwest Territories – The Land That Doesn’t Disappoint

Well it’s official. It is mid October, and there is snow everywhere here in the Northwest Territories. Winter has come early this year. Not that I am complaining, I do love the snow. Especially when it’s accompanied by favorable temperatures. Although, the up and down, above and below zero game, makes things messy, wet, and slick. You never know what your going to get. Yes, the pro’s and con’s to everything in life.

Just before the snow flew, I went out on another day of adventuring. It’s just what I do. No matter where in the world I am. Trust me though, the snow ain’t gonna stop this lady from adventuring. It simply creates more various adventure opportunities. Particularly in the NWT.

The week prior to this I went to Twin Falls Gorge and enjoyed the epic ambiance of Alexandra Falls.

This time, we went the opposite direction. We cruised out to the little community of Kakisa, which is about 1.5 hours North of Hay River, NWT. With a population of about 45 people, I don’t mean little lightly.

The primary reason of driving out there was to visit Lady Evelyn Falls. Which is located just 5 km away from Kakisa. Obviously I had to take a little cruise through the quite little community since I was in the area. Lady Evelyn Falls are closed for the season. Well the campgrounds are.

img_4605img_4604  You can still walk in and see the falls. It was quite cool being in the area when everything is totally shut for the winter. A completely empty campground. Not a soul to be found, other then a couple of birds that is. Funny enough though, I wouldn’t have any problem camping in that weather. Get a nice warm fire going, a couple extra layers of clothes, and your laughing. Or perhaps I am just a die hard?! Ahh well, next summer.

Don’t forget to heed the warning before you embark on your waterfall adventure.

img_4429
I guess it depends what a high level really means? Thanks for the warning though!


Lady Evelyn Falls are quite a bit smaller then Louise and Alexandra Falls at the Twin Falls Gorge, however she is not lacking in pure stunning beauty.


It’s almost a calm feeling and smooth flowing energy when you are around them. As opposed to the powerful high energy feeling you get at the Twin Falls. It’s not hard to get down beside them, but we didn’t go for it that day.  It was a beauty of a pit stop, and well worth the drive in itself.

After we took in our fill of Lady Evelyn Falls, it was time to start driving back in the direction of Hay River. Not without keeping our eyes peeled for more pit stop adventures to be had along the way. I absolutely love having no plans sometimes. I truly believe in the journey along the way, and when you are open to receive whatever awesomeness is out there, you get exactly that. More awesomeness. Not without a few bumps in the roads at times. I mean trust me when I was crossing Africa alone with that mentality, there were some bumps. However, it always turned out amazing or with a big ol’ forehead swipe of ‘phew’ , and definitely added to my story.

There was this awesome little lookout point that we pulled into. You stand tall on the rocks, and take in the spectacular Northern view.

img_4451
It’s total Northern landscape as far as the eye can see, and it’s absolutely wonderful.

img_4559 It is so unique, and as you progress up North towards the Tundra, you have less and less plantation. The changes are dramatic, and the beauty just continually morphs, yet never becomes less. Looking into this bliss, makes a person want to bring a canvas and paint it. Maybe I will wait for warmer weather though. 

Don’t forget to lick a tree while you are there.

Not far up the highway from that look out point, we pulled into McNallie Creek, where sit’s another one of mother natures dazzling gem’s.


There is a day use area, and once again, another set of little waterfalls flowing into a bowl shaped ravine. With the icicles forming on the edges of the water, you can see winter is well on it’s snowy and cold way.  If you keep your eyes peeled when you are there, you can see cliff swallows nesting in the walls as well. Which we didn’t see that day…..

The depths of the water at the base does appear fairly deep. I have been told that people do enjoying jumping in there in the summer.

The paths around the area are great if you feel like frolicking in the bush.

img_4491 The colors were magnificent, and even though there was a chill in the air, after a bit of walking you don’t even feel it. You get warmed up by the incredible setting. Nothing compares to being in nature, it gives you such an uplift and flow of awesome energy. And particularly in the North. It’s a very special place that I will never stop boasting about.

That was a whole day of absolute pure bliss. It’s amazing what you can accomplish in one day. The majestic Northwest Territories once again did not disappoint. It seems as though she is the land of endless waterfalls.

While you wait to check the NWT off of your bucket list, don’t forget to explore your own back yard. There are always beautiful places hidden around every corner – where you would least expect it.

Northwest Territories Timeless Beauty – Small Town, Big Charm

The natural beauty in Northwest Territories is endless and enchanting. Each corner has it’s own unique splendor to be enjoyed. Even having grown up here, there are still so many places I have yet to discover in this vast territory. It’s full of culture, northern lights, midnight sun, incomparable landscapes and pristine natural beauty. Yes, mother nature does not skimp out on us up here.

The beauty surrounding the quaint little town of Hay River, NWT is no different. Every year I make sure to come and enjoy a few months back here, and no matter the season, it is always incredible. Although some seasons are faster then others.

Summer is amazing with the midnight sun, winter is long and a tad dark, however the majestic beauty of the snow covered landscape is one to remember, the cold is a small price to pay, and in between those two there is, Fall. I love fall. The colors are magnificent, and there is such an array of colorful beauty to be basked in.

A day trip to the waterfalls is a must when you are in the area, during anytime of year really. There are actually three sets of waterfalls located about 45 minutes drive from town. The small ones at Escarpment Creek, and the two larger ones at Twin Falls GorgeLouise Falls and Alexandra Falls. It’s amazing to see such impressive and grand falls and landscape so close to town. There is something about waterfalls, you can just feel the energy exuding from them when you are in their presence. It’s even more amazing to see them frozen over in the winter. Frozen beautifully in place. Not a sight you come across every day.

img_4221
These ones in particular are Alexandra Falls. They are directly off the highway, so an easy pull off for a pit stop. There is a lookout point you can walk to, which gives you the perfect picturesque view.

img_4314

Or you can very easily walk down along side of them at the top of the actual falls, where you can take in all the awe-inspiring natural brilliance and energy of the flow up close and personal.

 

img_4302-1

Don’t be grabbing no barrels and trying to go over though. Probably wouldn’t be the best idea.

There is a fantastic path between Alexandra and Louise falls.

img_4157

So if you are keen for a nice afternoon stroll between the two, it’s a perfect way to immerse yourself in the serenity of the Northern nature.

Make sure you bring a picnic as well, as there are picnic area’s where you can have a fire and a cook out, as well as endless laughs with some of your favorite companions.

img_4129

You can keep it extra northern and local, by using fresh locally caught whitefish, and garden fresh veggies.

Keeping it local no matter where in the world I am, is exactly how I like it.

img_4120

This area is timeless and rich in beauty. A feast for the eyes and a treat for the soul. If you have not already been, Northwest Territories is a must see destination, and so is the town of Hay River. This small place really is just the beginning, or one could say – the entrance to the ‘Spectacular NWT.

 

NWT – Beach Vibes On The Shores Of The Great Slave Lake

Northwest Territories, sun, sand, beach, and fall weather – I love all of those things. The NWT continually has unique beauty on offer. Summer comes to an end so fast here. When she goes, she goes. It’s essential to enjoy as much of the sunshiny outdoors and beach weather as possible before the Arctic freeze takes over.

So a sunny warm day in September, means it has to be enjoyed!

My hometown of Hay River is situated on the Great Slave Lake, the tenth largest lake in the world.

img_3735

At first glance you may think the water looks a little murky, being brown and stuff… But it’s as fresh as they come, being a fresh water lake, and the fishing is fantastic. The water can be chilly, but us Northerner’s are used to it, and our blood has no problem adjusting. Really though, it’s not bad at all. Once you hop in it only takes a minute to adjust.

img_3520

Now even though there is also a very large amount of driftwood, don’t let that deter you either.

The more driftwood the bigger the beach bonfires.

I love when myself and friends get together and crack some cold ones on the beach while enjoying the crackling of a bonfire.

img_3525

I would call it pure soul food. It always varies with the drift wood situation, sometimes there is loads, other times not so much.

It was a stunning autumn day – warm, sunny, calm winds, absolute perfect day to enjoy some outdoor bliss. Not to mention I had scheduled a date with myself. You know, epic ‘me time’, where I bask in my own awesome company, and re-charge.

beach2

One of my favorite past times. It also gives me the opportunity to reflect, and get my creative juices flowing. I decided what better place to go then to the beach on such a miraculous fall day.

The water was ridiculously calm, not too cold, and the sun was as bright and lovely as a ever. I brought my blanket, and had some chill time. It was truly blissful. I have a massive appreciation for this part of the world. Perhaps I am a bit biased because this is my home, but it speaks for itself really.

My awesome energy was once again on full form so I could venture back into the world and share it with as many people as possible. Taking time for yourself is a gift that everyone deserves. Not to mention, taking that time to appreciate the beauty you have surrounding you exactly where you are. So what are you waiting for?! Get out here and enjoy some of that epic ‘me time’. You should also plan a trip to the alluring Northwest Territories.

Ice Fishing in the depths of the Great Slave Lake.

Where there is winter and a frozen lake – There is winter fun and ice fishing! With winter taking up the majority of the year, you have to keep life as entertaining as possible so as to keep your blood pumping so you don’t ice over.  Although, that being said, I still love winter just as much as ever, and I don’t mind the cold at all.  Usually that is… If I am stuck outside and freezing my butt off getting frost bite, then yes, perhaps in that case I would beg to differ.  But with the proper attire, I am all game!

It was a balmy winter day, and the frozen over lake was calling our name.  Calling us straight to the fishing derby that it! It’s a little competition held annually in town on the Great Slave Lake.

IMG_4910

I grabbed a ticket and I was good to go! Cruising onto the lake you can see everyone’s vehicle’s parked by their little fishing shacks.

2015-03-14 001 010I had the most awesome crew of friends waiting for me at our designated hole. Having just returned from Spain, and not having been here for a winter in years, I was definitely not equipped with proper winter apparel, and I also forgot just how freaken cold it gets out on the frozen lake! Yah you could say I got a few looks when I rocked up onto the ice in my jeans, boots(not winter boots), a jacket, scarf and mitts……  It took me all of a few minutes to feel the bite of the cold, and also realize I may be a tad under dressed for the event.  I suppose seeing everyone else in their full on snow pants and parka’s may have also been a bit of a hint, or should I say brick wall!  Not always the brightest crayon in the box, absolutely one of the most entertaining though. But seriously, it’s easy to under estimate the winter deep freeze up here. Lesson learned. Well at least until the next time I end up abroad for years of warmer winter’s.

2015-03-14 001 003

After they were done poking fun at me for my ensemble, they wrapped me in whatever they could find to try and provide me with some warmth before hypothermia set in.

We prepped our fishing hole as any good northern fishing hole should be. Beer, beaver, rod, and hook dropped deep into the icy depths  Looks like a pro hole if you ask me.

2015-03-14 001 015

It was so cold that even our hole kept freezing over! Swift little kick with the ol’ boot clears that right up.

Even my beer kept freezing onto the can, and a piece of mitt fuzz. photo (1)Along with my face freezing stiff while I was trying to speak. It’s those moments where its so cold your nose starts running and your hoping its not going down your face as your skin is so cold you probably wouldn’t feel it. Hopefully though, if that happened, your friends would be so kind as to let you know. Otherwise it’s just embarrassing. 2015-03-14 001 017Need a ride anywhere cause your frozen stiff? If you did, there also happened to be that option.

With no bites in sight, the girls resorted to doing a little ice fishing chant around the hole in hopes that a fish might have jumped out and sacrificed itself. 2015-03-14 001 009 Desperate times call for desperate measures, and there was a $1500 prize to the best fish caught, so obviously you want to win!

Sadly the chant didn’t provoke any fish to get a front row seat of the show. I enjoyed it though! Speaking of desperate, I was starting to turn blue.  My blanket and what ever else I was wrapped in was not cutting it.  So a couple of my friends took me to get more appropriately suited up for the weather. photo (2)

Ok, and to grab a quick Bailey’s and Coffee.  Its best to also warm up from the inside when you are that frozen …. Not to mention it was darn delicious!

Wow, what a difference the proper clothing made! Happy days!!  I was more than ready to get back out there and catch a fish by that point. Except when we got back, a snow storm had ensued. It ended up making for the event to get cut short, as it was just ridiculously cold by that point, and the blizzardy white out wasn’t helping.2015-03-14 001 021 There was also a tuna shot, where  you take a golf club and try and shoot a can of tuna into a hole. Although it too was not really possible due to the blizzard that came in. 2015-03-14 001 023

So after all the prizes were drawn, and the one guy who actually caught a fish got his pot, we high tailed it outta there and straight to the little party shack to un-thaw and have a beer that wouldn’t tease you by turning into a block of ice before you could indulge in it. 2015-03-14 001 024 Gotta love a Canadian party shack!

photo (3) photo (4) Obviously if there is a seat with a saddle on it, you have no choice but to hop on! derby It’s not your typical ice fishing experience. However with an awesome crew, and the right clothing, it’s an epic day of endless laughter and Northern adventure. What more could you ask for?!