On to Tuktoyaktuk

Are we there yet? Nope, we are trapped by a blizzard.

After 4,000 kilometres of driving on the TITAN Arctic Challenge, we are cut short (hopefully temporarily) on the top of the Dempster Highway because of a blizzard.

The plan is to push through to Inuvik later today and then on to Tuktoyaktuk tomorrow for a turnaround visit, giving us 330 km of driving on Arctic Sea ice tomorrow. It is super exciting for all of us.

It was a chilly night last night with the mercury dipping to minus 30 in the tent, which I was able to put with until 5:30 a.m. and then jumped in to the cab of the truck to warm up a little.

I am astounded by the beauty that surrounds us. I never knew that the Dempster has so many secrets that are largely untold.

Without a doubt, it was the most beautiful mountain scenery I have ever seen. Having travelled and climbed in Europe, Australia, Africa, Asia and North America, I was taken aback by the stunning beauty and ruggedness of the mountains here.

A one-hour drive took us four hours because we had to stop and take so many photos, and missed the opportunity to continue on the open road that subsequently closed.

The Dempster segment followed a one night stay in Dawson where I participated in the somewhat obligatory SourToe cocktail — frankly the taste of the tequila was worse for me than someone’s old necrotic toe touching my lips.

It is hard not to reminisce in places like Dawson and cast your mind back to a time when it was first settled during the crazy gold-rush years.

The fever to cash in on a golden future was fuel for many good and bad activities. But what I find curious is that most people in the Yukon and Arctic come here not to seek riches, but to escape the crazy world of seeking riches — despite Discovery Channel’s attempts to prove otherwise.

Most people I spoke to are up here to enjoy the rugged and remote beauty of the region.

I will be back, and if you have not visited the Yukon, then, frankly it should be a must on your travel list.


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About the Author

Mark has been an entrepreneur for over forty years. His experience spans many commercial sectors and aspects of business. He was one of the youngest people to be appointed as a Fellow of the prestigious Institute of Sales and Marketing Management before he left the UK in 1988.

His column focuses on ways we can improve on success in our lives. Whether it is business, relationships, or health, Mark has a well-rounded perspective on how to stay focused for growth and development.

His influences come from the various travels he undertakes as an adventurer, philanthropist and keynote speaker. More information can be found on Mark at his website www.markjenningsbates.com

He is a Venture Partner with www.DutchOracle.com a global Alternative Investment company.

Mark Jennings-Bates:
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