Loc: western point of the peninsula
Acc: Hilleberg Keron 4
Dist: 0 km
I wake at five, after less than six hours of sleep. My body is not recovered yet from yesterday’s long paddling effort, although the updated forecast sounds like good low winds in the morning. I turn around again and give my body a bot of more rest. When I peep out of the tent at seven, I know I did good, despite absolute no wind and sunshine. My kayak, tent and the whole sandy tundra are covered with a thick layer of frost, and my slightly frostbitten fingertips already start to tickle just with the look of it. It is still around zero degrees, but I know the afternoon, when the southerly wind breezes up, the temperatures will rise. I stay in for thawing, resting and drying things out, a good decision.
Now it sounds like I will fly along the shallow easy coast with good tailwind for Thursday and Friday with fifty+ kilometers per day. I ask Karel for the forecast for Saturday and Sunday when I like to cross to Cambridge Bay. It will likely be Sunday for the final day. It is like it is, I am in no hurry. I hang all things outside which need drying, and the bright sun and afternoon wind does the job. It feels all morning and even in the sunny afternoon a bit weird to stay in, but it is a good decision for my comfort.
No animals to see anywhere besides birds, despite a lot of old caribou trails and a faded bear print. I think they are more inland when it becomes colder. I make a short walk just anywhere on this sandy tundra flat, but as easy as the coastline is to paddle here, as uninspiring it is for a hike.
I really love the Arctic for its wilderness and remoteness, but when it is so barren and free of larger animals like on all those rocky areas, islands, are here in the sandy flats in the late season, all feels a little dead to me. I definitively prefer more wildlife and a more lush green which I had in many other lovely sections of the Arctic. But sure, I also do not like to feel like sitting in a bear cage. Maybe I am overdone now and need to go home. Next year is another season to start over, freshly motivated, and maybe with a new smiling and happy paddling partner. I already heard rumors who that might be, at least for the first section…my favorite one…