Episode 33: Labrador, Canada

11:00 pm Norma

The day started at 4:30 AM when I woke to the sounds of some bird life cooing outside my tent flap. I hurried to locate the creature with such a beautiful voice, but found nothing but sea fog covering the lake and sandy beach where we set the planes down last evening and spent the night. The fog will allow me a few more hours in this land of personal paradise.

Soon we all rallied to make a breakfast of pancakes and heated syrup, all with a little bit of sand mixed in for local texture. Soon the “Flat Jack Flipping Olympics” started with Dr. Dan from Lincoln Nebraska winning the gold. As he stepped up to the podium to receive his gold metal (a tent rope with a yellow tent stake attached), instead of the National Anthem we sang the following song written by Kim Schoening and family for the International Order of Arrowhead Point Pancake Flippers.

We are flippers of flapjacks.
We’re here to make a comeback.
We think that flipping is just grand.
We always make them pancakes,
We never make them sandcakes,
They always seem to hit the pan.
And when they slide to and fro
We know it’s time to flip them,
And o’er they go.
We never seem to miss, by crackie.

We have formed an order, that is known beyond the border, known as the IOAPF ( International Order of Arrowhead Point Pancake Flippers.)

Pick your own catchy little tune and enjoy this song.

We departed our private lake on the coast of Labrador around 10:00 a.m. to find our next fuel stop. A main activity of this Great Arctic Air Adventure is fueling up. These Beavers are very thirsty animals, taking about five 55 gallon drums of fuel at a stop. At $10.00 a gallon, you do the math.

Our first fuel stop of the day was at Forte’ Pond where we were met by Ronald Letto, owner of Strait Air who runs a charter business for moose hunters into Newfoundland. He was low on fuel as he was using most of his own fuel preparing for a big hunt. So many 5 gallon “Jerry Cans” later, we had enough fuel to get to the next fueling station. We want to say “Thanks” to Ron for the work of running to the airport and getting the fuel for us, plus his hospitality while we were there. Before leaving the GAAA crew topped off the morning with a few mishaps. One crew member slipped off the float and went into the lake… totally under. Now friends, it’s very cold water up here. Another crew member dropped one of her hip wader boats in the lake and it quickly went to the bottom and had to be retrieved. A couple jerry can lids and spouts flipped over board, and as we made our exit we lost a hat in the lake plus a very expensive lens cover from one of the movie cameras. Sometimes you just have those days.
Soon we were traveling over some of the most beautiful country, a land of millions of fantastic wooded lakes, not a soul for hundreds of miles. I started to realize how lucky I was to be a small part of this fantastic adventure. I was traveling over and setting down in lakes that most of the world will never have the chance to see, or even know they exist. This circumnavigation of Canada could have been done in wheel planes in a much shorter time, but you couldn’t touch down and have a picnic or camp at any lake you desire. This is the only way to travel and really see the landscape.

Our next fueling station was in Havre-St-Pierre Quebec, where Andre Jomphe and crew got us fueled up. Upon finishing, we set off to town for a fantastic seafood meal. Havre-St-Pierre is a French town -no english written or spoken here. A very interesting fishing town, it’s worth looking this one up.

The GAAA team thanks you for taking this trip with us. We only wish that someday you could be here too.

Wednesday Sept. 3rd Co-Pilot for N67DN signing off and shutting down, . 2300 hrs

Good night and stay healthy, Norma from the GAAA team.

A shout out to Stehekin and all our friends following this adventure.

N50 15.48
W63 33.02

6 Responses
  1. Marshall H. Massengale :

    Date: September 4, 2008 @ 2:01 pm

    Si j’etais avec vous, je serais heureux pour etre a votre service en Quebec.

    If I was with you all, I’d be happy to be at your service in Quebec.

  2. Cathie Healey :

    Date: September 4, 2008 @ 3:58 pm

    Hi Norma,
    Just sitting in sunny K.L and thinking about you and your big adventure. Hope you’re not freezing your butt off. I’ve managed to read a few of the blogs on the web site, WOW !! It truely is a once in a lifetime event. Don’t know if I’d be up for it (not a morning person, 4.30 starts are just criminal) Phillip on the other hand would be in hog heaven. Anyway stay safe and can’t wait to hear from you when you return. Love all in K.L.

  3. Rene :

    Date: September 4, 2008 @ 6:31 pm

    Greetings from Stehekin! Good to hear from you out there. We expect to hear lots of great stories when you get home…..did you lose the wader…? :o )
    Safe travels!

  4. Pat Dunn :

    Date: September 5, 2008 @ 7:21 am

    I just want to thank you and your crew of awesome adventurers for the
    fantastic vicarious voyage I’ve been able to take with you all. I met Jim
    and Doug and Mark in the Parks Canada office in Inuvik where it was my pleasure to take them through the formalities needed to visit Tuktut Nogait National Park. I also had the thrill of going to the floatbase to see the wonderful little aircraft that have made your trip possible — it was exciting to imagine the trip they were about to take and the places the crew would see.

    Now those places have been visited and I have had the great good fortune to see them through your eyes. I feel I know “my” Canadian north better now! Moreover the warmth and good humour of the gang came through in every note. What a fun group to go camping with!

    I’m glad to know everyone has completed the journey safely with no more calamity than the occasional dunking and lost lens cap! Best wishes to you all and may you have many more wonderful adventures. I sure enjoyed hearing about this one.

  5. Melinda Smit :

    Date: September 9, 2008 @ 10:40 pm

    Hi Norma, greetings from New Caledonia. By the looks of things, you are having a wonderful time. Once in a life time experience. Enjoy and next time we meet in KL, we will catch up with all the adventures. Thinking of you. Lots of Love. Melinda Smit

  6. Geri Lewis :

    Date: September 16, 2008 @ 7:19 am

    Hi Norma, what fun it has been for us to hear about this wonderful adventure as it has unfolded. Can only imagine what it will be to hear from you wnen next we meet. Travel safe and see you soon. Lots of Love Geri Lewis

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