Next week I have the privilege to travel to Lake Hazen, located within Quttinirpaaq National Park (QNP) on Ellesmere Island, Nunavut. On occasion, Parks Canada offers the general public an opportunity to volunteer at QNP – as a camp cook. I eagerly submitted my application and waited to see if they would take a chance on my mediocre culinary abilities. Visiting QNP with Parks Canada is a remarkable opportunity for a regular guy like me to visit one of the most remote areas in the world. Accessing the park is extremely difficult as its remoteness precludes most from visiting. After flying to Resolute Bay from Iqaluit, we will access the park by taking a 4-hour chartered flight by Twin Otter – an aircraft that is capable of landing on the tundra. I am very grateful that Parks Canada selected me for this adventure and I am eager to experience what it feels like to live in complete isolation. The opportunity to observe bison, foxes, wolves and a variety of birds and other animals is truly exciting and I look forward to the coming weeks.
In Inuktitut, QNP translates to “top of the world” and is the second largest national park in Canada. Evidence of human presence around these areas date back to more that 5000 years – particularly pre-Dorset, Dorset and Thule people. For me, Quttinirpaaq represents one of the last remaining regions of the world that is largely undiscovered and untouched. It is an oasis for those who seek solitude and adventure. I’m not really sure what to expect after landing at Lake Hazen, but that’s why I was attracted to this opportunity in the first place.
More to come!