I woke up in the anticipation of a very cold water event (swimming in the Arctic ocean), and even right away put the bathing suit on under my flight suit. The weather decided for us differently though. The morning started with low overcast in Inuvik, and IFR ceilings and snow in Tuktoyaktuk.
Having the unexpected waiting time, we decided to maximize on touristic activities before departure and checkout the local cuisine. The local most recommended place, Alestine’s, is cooking on a school bus on the front yard, and serve in an authentic looking cafeteria.
Ken Fowler with his Rocket and Jim Hrymack with his Harvard (longest range planes) headed off to Sachs Harbour for the airshow. The ice was just breaking off on the ocean, and the views could not get any more Northern!
Waiting a little longer around Inuvik, part of the group gave it a shot and went North towards Tuktoyaktuk.
On the way, there were a couple of ice pingos – ice dome hills.
The attempt paid off, and Tuktoyaktuk got its first ever Tuktuyaktuk Airshow!
One boy was so excited when he heard the planes coming, that he ran out of the house in one croc and one boot!
The team got a tour of town, incl. underground freezers…
polar bear pants making…
and topped up with dipping the toes in the Arctic Ocean, although the ice was only about 20 feet off shore.
Our next airshow is in Fort Good Hope. The route to it was beautiful. And in ratio of land to water started being in favor of terra ferma again.
Upon landing, we were greeted by free roaming muskox at the end of the runway. The nature here is… undisturbed.
We arrived with a school bus to town, and checked out the airshow box for tomorrow. The site is wonderful, and we are looking forward to flying here tomorrow!
We were warmly greeted by excited kids. And a girl Ivy right away told us she wants to be a pilot!
We had home-made dinner of soup and garlic toast in the local community centre.
And then Richard gave us a school bus city tour.
During the tour, we stopped by the Chief’s house and bailed all the 200 school kids out of school tomorrow early, so that they get to see the airshow at 1 o’clock.
The most unexpected highlight of the tour was to find the most beautiful catholic church. The church looked pretty modest from the outside.
But once we stepped inside, the beauty was absolutely breathtaking!
The light coming from the colored windows is magical.
Painting of this church started in 1864 and completed in 1878. Paintings on canvas is conventional oil painting. But the painting that is right on the wood was made all with fish oil paint and local natural colors only. The most amazing part is that it has never been repainted since. It is the oldest church in the North.
When the time came to go to bed, a hotel was not on the menu. Accommodation arrangements consisted of names of people and numbers of beds. Bud, Ross and myself were dropped off at a house on the river. When we asked if there were any rules, the Ann (hostess) said “It’s your house!”.
It felt very cozy and homey. My “office” tonight even has a river view.
Distance flown: 3215 nm (5954 km)
Airshows flown: 28