From Sled Lake to Stark Lake – Northwest Territories, Canada

12th July

We were getting a heatwave from the east of Canada, and the weather was hot with no wind. Sled Creek fell into several rapids during the five kilometers we canoed this day, but all of them where lined, and no portaging was necessary.

The lack of wind and the hot air made us throw every clothing but our boxers, even though this made us a easy meal for the thousands of black flies. The black flies did not itch so much as the mosquito, but they left a small bleeding spot that turned into a tiny red-blue mark on the skin. After a hundred bites, you looked like you had some kind of disease.

In one of the larger rapids, where the river become a strong waterfall at the one side, both dogs happened to find them self on the opposite side of the river than us. Lincoln, young and restless, eager to get on his owners side, jumped though less into the rapid, and were caught by the white water. Bernt reacted quickly. He jumped into the rapid, saving Lincoln from a good beating down the white water. Though Bernt caught the desperate dog, he could not manage to fight the fast water, and they both were taken several meters down the waterfall before he could get a foot behind a rock, stopping their uncontrolled tumbling. Sitting there, he could not move. The water ran too strong around him, and he used both arms holding on to the wet and startled pointer.

The situation was only close to critical, but serious enough. They would both take a good beating if he lost his grip, being dragged down the rapid, but I could not help myself from laughing. I tied the canoe to a rock, and helped the two wet guys out of the river. The only injuries were Bernt’s sore leg, and Lincolns damaged tracksuit. Nothing some needle and tread could not mend.

Entering a widening of the river, the sun baked our backs, and there were no wind at all. Suddenly, from out of nowhere a strong wind built up from behind, and within seconds the wind had picked up speed enough to look like a small storm. Alarmed we canoed to shelter behind a small island. The wind fell silent, as fast as it had arrived. Luckily we were not far from shelter, but the phenomena is a dangerous thing for a canoer, if you get caught far out on a large lake.

We found a good island in one of the small nameless lakes, and set up camp for the evening. The day had been hot, and tomorrow looked to be even hotter. We decided to use tomorrow as a resting day. Enjoying the weather, and search for the trout. Night came, but the island turned out to be as good as bug free. We ate and enjoyed a beautiful northern sunset that never ended.

Caribou

The scull of a good sized caribou can be used for anything….

Black flie feast

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