My bags are being packed and I am almost ready to GO!
The trip starts in two days, and it seems as though there is still a lot to do.
I have been checking previous lists from similar trips which makes the organization a bit easier.
We have been instructed to simplify and consolidate as much as possible. Still there are layers of clothing which will be necessary, and cold weather outerwear to squeeze into the two bags. Then there is the photo gear which includes two cameras, a tripod, batteries at least three for each camera, etc., etc.
My daughter, Klara, is lending a few items: a really warm down jacket, and a pair of goretex pants that are bit large but will make it easier to get in and out of. She also sent along some battery operated warm socks. I am still on the fence about them, because it just entails another set of batteries, etc. You are probably not familiar with “Micky Mouse” boots, which are an Arctic wear item. They are rated to -40˚F and are big black rubber boots. They really do a good job, and I saw them in use four years ago by the locals there in Churchill.
I spent a good deal of time last week trying to get the Netbook I had up to speed, and me familiar with how to navigate through it. (I have only used it for photo travel.) Well, after downloading a few pictures and noting the speed of the downloads, and the size of the files to be downloaded, I have upgraded my travel computer to a MacBook Air! That was not in the budget but I am convinced it was a very good idea. (It will mean faster downloads, which leads to more uninterrupted sleep at night.) I am also very familiar with the Mac platform.
The itinerary is to fly to Winnipeg on Saturday, and then spend two days driving to Thompson, Canada, where we will board a train for the overnight travel to Churchill. Once in Churchill, we will have four days of photographing the polar bears, and three days of exploring Churchill, and dog sledding. Each night we will also check out the sky for a chance to see the Northern Lights.
As you can guess, there will be some long days, and hopefully a long night at least once. I saw the No. Lights four years ago in Churchill, but they were quite faint. The solar activity has been much greater this year, so there is a possibility of a good show. The real factor here will be the weather. If it is not a clear night, there will not be any sightings.
Let the adventure begin.