Can You Hear the Call of the Northern Wild?

Wendy Redal January 12, 2011 1

When much of the nation is in a deep-freeze and snow is on the ground in all 50 states, as I’ve heard is the case today, it’s only natural that thoughts may drift toward balmier summer vacation prospects. It might seem odd that my own vacation daydreams are centering on the Arctic, when it’s below zero here in Colorado. But that’s exactly what has captured my imagination as I’ve been salivating over some new trips that Natural Habitat Adventures is offering in the high latitudes this summer.

Summer wildflowers in Greenland. Photo: Greenland Tourism

Summer wildflowers in Greenland. Photo: Greenland Tourism

While “the Arctic” may conjure up images of sprawling icefields and endless snow-mantled landscapes, polar bears, and fur-clad Inuit bundled against the cold, it’s a whole different scenario in the summertime. During the brief weeks of a Far North summer, ice melts, snow recedes, the tundra bursts forth in a blanket of green grass and brilliant wildflowers, animals venture forth in great numbers to feed and raise their young beneath the perpetual sunlight. This is the season that beckons adventure travelers yearning to experience nature that is truly pristine, in a landscape steeped in silence.

While treks in the Andes or Himalayas are exciting to be sure, and paddling off the B.C. coast is tough to match for scenic splendor and wildlife encounters, there is really nothing to compare with the remote, other-worldly feel of the Arctic’s farthest reaches.

The midnight sun illumines icebergs in Greenland

The midnight sun illumines icebergs in Greenland

“Off the beaten path” is a much-overused travel cliché. Yet that is where many adventure travelers are aching to go. When so many natural places have become overrun with visitors seeking an escape, you have to look farther afield to find true wilderness and genuine challenge for the explorer’s spirit. And the best place to look for both is northward.

Muskoxen on Ellesmere Island

Muskoxen on Ellesmere Island

Looking for something really extraordinary for your summer vacation?  Take your choice of hiking or kayaking in East Greenland, one of the most unspoiled places remaining on the planet. High mountain ranges protect isolated fjords that gouge deeply into the islands of the Tassilaq archipelago.

Tassilaq, main town in East Greenland

Tassilaq, main town in East Greenland

Photo: Russell Farrow

Photo: Russell Farrow

Want to escape winter’s grip? Pick up your imaginary paddle or pull on your boots and start with some vicarious exploring on the Natural Habitat Adventures website.

I’d love to see you UP there!

Wendy

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