by Adam Reimer
You never know what you’re going to see at Nanuk Polar Bear Lodge, no matter what the weather may bring.
We headed out in the afternoon into 50 km winds and blowing snow, not ideal but… we made it no more than 400 yards to the west of the lodge when a pack of wolves sprang up from their beds in the willows!
With a short stand off between the pack and us they trotted off down our snowmobile trail heading west. Once the wolves were far enough away that we had some room to move, we cut a wide route on the coast while they stayed on our sheltered trail.
The wind was howling and the untouched terrain was filled with rollers and bumps, on top of that the light was flat, making it hard to see. But we had to get ahead of the wolves, knowing they would continue west.
We drove a few kilometres before turning back inland to get back to where we thought they would be walking by, but it wasn’t far enough! As soon as we came through the trees to the sheltered trail, the wolves were right in front of us. No time to get the cameras out!
So we went again, this time further and faster. Spotting an opening in the willows and trees we cut through and entered a large clearing. This was the spot. We parked, got out the cameras and waited.
Not more than two minutes later, all 14 wolves came trotting down the trail towards us, without concern for us they rolled, played and even mated, promising behaviour for the continuation of the pack!
Inquisitive and unthreatening, the wolves got within 10 metres of us, smelling, looking and learning more about what we were. And we did the same, the telephoto lenses capturing ourselves in the wolf’s eyes.
Three more times we repeated our encounter, with each as magical as the last, and a quote from one of our guests with a heavy French accent summed up the day beautifully…
“Thank you for making my life happy.”