We then hit a molten-hot tarmac at Buffalo Airways and got a personal tour from Mikey McBryan, who’s featured in the docu-series Ice Pilots. My evening included a visit with a husky from a sled dog team, seeing “YKEA” (the local dump is known as Yellowknife’s IKEA; nothing gets thrown away here), scavenging and a late-night climb with a bottle of vino, some blueberries and stories as a red sun crested the horizon, not to set, but only to rest and rise again.
Before flying out, I had a chance to visit the talented folks over at the Aboriginal-owned Erasmus Apparel, which creates Aboriginal-inspired designs screen-printed on clothing, the perfect souvenir for this trip.
And then that was it for my six days on the edge of the Arctic Circle, where helping your neighbour really is the first order of business, and the only way to survive in this land of extreme weather and extreme living. This experience inspired many a painting when I returned home to my studio on Vancouver Island. These people have heart and grit and talent beyond whatever expectations I had going in. I love you, Yellowknife—see you for the freeze!