Temperature: -10 F/ -23 C
Wind: 5 MPH/8 KPH
Cloud Cover: Cloudy with light flurries
Pack it up and clear it out! We’re back in the saddle again. Tomorrow morning will find us on trail, heading north into Auyuittuq National Park . Today was the day for last preparations…one last shower, one last load of laundry, one last phone call home…before we say goodbye again for the second leg of our grand adventure.
Elizabeth and I took a break from packing to visit Alookie Elementary School. 160 students filled the small gymnasium with at least 30 first graders right up front. Interest and enthusiasm was high as we showed slides from our trip thus far. Each photograph brought a series of exclamations from the smallest members of our audience. When we finally arrived at our last slide, a video from our visit to the Outpost Camp, the students began to tap their feet and nod their heads along with Lypa PItsiulak’ s energetic accordion solo. Before too long the entire room was tapping their feet in time, until the sound of feet drowned out the music itself. When the video ended the kids erupted in applause. We want to extend a big thank you to the staff at Alookie for their help in translating our presentation from English to Inuktitut.
The rest of the day hummed along with productivity. Simon finished his komatiq sled and pushed it up to
the house. Several kids stopped by to admire it, jumping on back pretending to mush down the street. They knocked on our door, eager to meet its builder and driver. Elizabeth made a trip to the fish plant in town, to learn more about the impact of warm temperatures and thin ice on turbot harvesting. John and Nancy worked hard all morning preparing the dog food and gear for travel. Each one of us did the last few things necessary to feel prepared and ready for trail. While we will miss the warmth and hospitality of the Pangnirtung community (and the warmth and ease of living indoors), we are all feeling the pull to get back out into simple routine and the rhythm of life on the land.