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PostPosted: May 10th, 2013, 1:17 am 
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Looks like I may be spending some time in Iqaluit this summer. Looking into paddling the Sylvia Grinnel. Need a boat and transportaion up-river. Glenn Wiliams' old e-mail address doesn't work anymore. Any other suggestions?


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PostPosted: May 10th, 2013, 9:07 am 
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For the Soper you could also try this commercial offering http://www.wanapiteicanoe.com/trips.asp?ID=30. And yes, I do know the guide on this one!

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PostPosted: May 10th, 2013, 6:10 pm 
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Location: North Bay, Ontario
Krusty wrote:
Looks like I may be spending some time in Iqaluit this summer. Looking into paddling the Sylvia Grinnel. Need a boat and transportaion up-river. Glenn Wiliams' old e-mail address doesn't work anymore. Any other suggestions?


The contact info I have is
Tukturjuk Outfitting
Contact: Glenn Williams
PH: 867-979-2289
FX: 867-979-4924

But that may be out of date. He was my next door neighbor but we lost touch over the years.

There are other outfitters in Iqaluit, just do a google search and you will find several. The difficulty might be to find a canoe as they were quite rare when I was there. Lots of kayaks around however.

Have fun,

Kinguq.


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PostPosted: May 30th, 2013, 10:42 am 
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Thanks guys.

We've contacted the outfitters flying in to the Soper and could possibly get a flight with one of them if they have room. Difficulty is getting a canoe for either the Soper or the Sylvia Grinnel.
I couldn't get answers at those numbers Kinguq. If we can't make a canoe trip happen we'll be spending a week or so camping at Iqaluit. Any suggestions for a tourist?


Last edited by Krusty on August 3rd, 2013, 7:21 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: May 30th, 2013, 8:24 pm 
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Krusty wrote:
Thanks guys.

My partner's budget can't accomodate a guided trip, but we've contacted the outfitters flying in to the Soper and could possibly get a flight with one of them if they have room. Difficulty is getting a canoe for either the Soper or the Sylvia Grinnel.
I couldn't get answers at those numbers Kinguq. If we can't make a canoe trip happen we'll be spending a week or so camping at Iqaluit. Any suggestions for a tourist?
[quote="Krusty"]

Well, my knowledge is somewhat dated, although as it happens I will be going back to Baffin in August. In truth, you can hike virtually anywhere there, the only barriers are river crossings. The Sylvia is definitely too big to cross on foot, as is the Soper. Other than that, just pick a route and start hiking. There is quite a lot of hummocky tundra, which can be quite tiring to walk on, but other than that the going is quite good. Also bears are very rarely seen in inner Frobisher Bay so you wouldn't have to worry about that.

If you want, it is possible to walk from Frobisher to Kimmirut (Lake Harbour). I understand they have designated this the Itijjagiaq Trail but it follows the snowmobile trail between the towns. This would require you to get a boat ride to Bay of Two Rivers which is maybe an hour from town. If you did the whole trip you would see the Soper valley which is quite pretty. Another possibility would be to fly to Lake Harbour and hike up the valley from there.

Another idea might be to just hike up the Grinnell or any of the other river valleys nearby. Really there is no limit for the dedicated hiker if that is what you are in to.

I had some friends that flew in to Amadjuaq lake and hiked back to town. Took them about a week and they found it quite difficult. Some really hard country NW of Sylvia Grinnell Lake.

One thing, you need a really windproof tent. Something that the wind can't get under the fly. Also attach ropes to all the peg loops 'cause you'll be using rocks. And of course you need a stove.

Sorry I can't be of more help but I am a man of the trees now. Best of luck,

Kinguq.


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PostPosted: May 30th, 2013, 8:40 pm 
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One other thing I forgot to mention: if you want to hike the coast, which is also fun, you have to be aware of the tides. The tidal range is up to 12 m which can lead to km of tide flats. This can be an advantage, as the walking is often quite good on the tide flats, but of course you have to be aware of the cycle.

If you can get hold of a folding kayak like a Folbot or similar, just paddling inner Frobisher Bay would be quite worthwhile.

Kinguq.


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PostPosted: May 30th, 2013, 10:11 pm 
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Appreciate your help Kinguq. Had about decided on a new tent, and you've just convinced me.


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PostPosted: May 31st, 2013, 10:19 am 
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" Also bears are very rarely seen in inner Frobisher Bay so you wouldn't have to worry about that."

I am guiding on the Soper this July. I am advised that bears are indeed something that you want to be aware of and prepared for in that valley, most particularly on the lower part. The early loss of ice and late return of ice in recent years is undoubtedly having an impact on the habits of polar bears. This can be expected to be more evident as time goes on.

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PostPosted: June 1st, 2013, 9:27 am 
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Rick Reid wrote:
" Also bears are very rarely seen in inner Frobisher Bay so you wouldn't have to worry about that."

I am guiding on the Soper this July. I am advised that bears are indeed something that you want to be aware of and prepared for in that valley, most particularly on the lower part. The early loss of ice and late return of ice in recent years is undoubtedly having an impact on the habits of polar bears. This can be expected to be more evident as time goes on.


Granted, but my advice was for Frobisher Bay, not Hudson Strait, into which the Soper flows.


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PostPosted: June 6th, 2013, 3:43 am 
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Rick Reid wrote:
I am guiding on the Soper this July.

Are you doing the Wanapitie trip on the 18th? It wasn't fully booked so we've arranged with Shaun to share the flights in and out.


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PostPosted: June 6th, 2013, 8:07 am 
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Krusty,
Yes. Send me a PM please.

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PostPosted: August 2nd, 2013, 9:59 pm 
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An update for those of you who were following this thread:

My sister and I ended up renting a SOAR canoe from an outfitter in Iqaluit for $200 – about the price of shipping a Pakcanoe there and back. The SOAR is basically a canoe shaped rubber raft, very stable and forgiving, surprisingly easy to maneuver, but a pig to push through the water and a real grunt if there is wind. It was well suited to the fast flowing rocky Soper River, particularly for novice paddlers:

http://soar1.com/soar_16.htm

(BTW, we also rented bear bangers and spray and had a SPOT and Sat-phone. Nunavut Parks are still evolving their protocols and this equipment may become mandatory in the future – check before you go. Also, while I’m at it, I’d like to mention that the service we received from Park staff in both Iqaluit and Kimmirut was truly outstanding.)

Only about 60 km of the Soper are considered paddlable – from Joy Mountain down to the coastal community of Kimmirut:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Kimmirut-2006.jpg

The twin Otter flight in to Joy was itself worth the price of admission as we stretched the limits of VFR under a low ceiling. That plane landed on a short little rocky sandbar - I could throw a rock from one end of it to the other and I’d have trouble negotiating it with my Jeep! (OK, that’s hyperbole, but still…!)

The Soper is a fast-flowing little river. The run starts with some wading at Joy to get to paddlable water, then a DNR shelf, then flows right along with a number of RII/RII+ rapids, then finally spectacular Soper Falls, the brackish Soper Lake with its high-tide "reversing falls" that spills in salt water, and Kimmirut.

http://www.visualphotos.com/image/2x454 ... erritorial

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soper_Lake

Rick took a charming Aussie family of 4 and a most pleasant American photographer type down the river in 2 SOARS and a Pakcanoe. My sister and I traveled as a separate party, usually in front of Rick’s group. As a single canoe we had to really lower our risk threshold so we’d hold-up at any “tricky” rapid so we could run them with Rick’s group. The security of having more than one boat (as well as Rick’s expertise) saved my sister and I some time and work lining and carrying.

The Soper River valley is a freaking awesome landscape.

http://nunavutparks.ca/english/parks-sp ... rview.aspx

There were still great chunks of ice in the harbour at Iqaluit when we arrived July 14th and the remnant of a snowdrift in the campground when we left on the 28th! The weather on the river varied quickly and dramatically as it does in the north and the mountains. Turns out that July is their rainy season, and lots of ice at sea this year kept the weather mostly miserable: rain that was sometimes mostly sleet, +3C at night to +7-ish during the day, strong gusty winds. We did have a couple of beautiful sunny calm + 13C partial-days too though.

Also, the Baffin Island mosquitos deserve a shout-out: big, tough and tenacious, they handle the wind and rain and cold like little jet fighters, coming at you mano a mano. I've been around some, seen some "bad" mosquitos, and I was impressed!

The unusual cold kept the Arctic char from running up the river – I caught one small one on the Soper. Partially redeemed myself with a beautiful little 3-pounder later near Iqaluit <smile>.

Rick, t’was a pleasure sharing the river with you Sir!


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PostPosted: August 3rd, 2013, 7:10 am 
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Percy,
It was my (our) pleasure. Even the rain and windchill factor didn't diminish the pleasure and beauty of the Soper Valley. When I emptied out my tent at home I was surprised again by the number and size of the dead mossies that fell out! We were blessed with high water levels which did manage to minimize the lining in rock gardens to the start of the river. I was told that this could be a 3 km portage with very low levels.

As Percy indicated, the Nunavut Territorial Park staff, particularly Dion Fitzpatrick in Iqaluit and Tommy Akavak in Kimmirut could not have been more helpful and pleasant. Amazing would describe them fairly and accurately!

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PostPosted: August 3rd, 2013, 9:31 am 
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Hi, P. It was great paddling with you and your sister on the Soper. Your rendition of the events of the paddling week was perfect. Except, I might crank up the description of the wind speed and intensity of the gusts. I remember it pounding the tents much more and for longer, and it did rip up the group tent just a bit. We went scrambling to rescue dishes, etc out of the river the first time it tried to explode on us and came down around our heads. Yikes!

I will look forward to paddling with you again soon. Yes, I have tons of photos and will snail mail them once I get your address.

Thanks, again....."The American Photographer (aka...Dragonflypotter)

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