Friday night, we left for the Fishing Derby. The old sleigh recovered for the occasion is solidly repaired and ready: it welcomes our little family as well as sleeping bags, food and fuel for five days, not to mention the fish box that we hope to fill up. No less than nine hours, with some "stuck-push operations" through some rough ice area, are needed to reach the frozen lake north of Devon Island.
Around 4am the tent is set up, arrivals of grisefiordmiuts go before and after the official opening, in the same morning, at 10am. Will be awarded the three longest fishes caught and a secret size in two categories, adults and kids. Motor augers are getting through the silence and through the meter of ice, near and sometimes inside the white cotton tents. Wooden sticks are fluttering rhythmically, ice fishing began. Leonie, first to start, is soon rewarded for her patience by a nice size arctic char.
Raymond, from the neighboring tent, find some time to hunt a caribou and give us a haunch. Eric is delighted to help carve the beast.
The sun is not showing much, a light snow accompanies our stay, under spring temperatures: -4°C to -7°C. We are a small French speaking camp with our friend Joanne, Grise Fiord's nurse, for greatest joy of Aurore and Léonie. Four days out of time, a few fishes hooked by all of us, snowmobile tours to explore the surroundings, friends all around...
The return trip is more windy, Tuesday evening, and instead of a single crack, we have five or six to cross, this is the result of the rising temperatures. Ice is changing fast.
Besides the pleasure of the outdoor vacation, our stay was successful: a box filled with arctic char and caribou, and the first kids prize won by Leonie, as well as the prize for secret size!