Waking up the other day to a thick morning frost on the outside of my windows was a reminder of what’s to come. Its been a few years since I’ve been in Winnipeg and I’m already anxiously waiting to get out and “enjoy” what Winnipeg’s Winter has to offer.
Google also agrees with their #1 pick of the Coldest Canadian City … Winnipeg.
One of the things I love about Winnipeg is its people… no matter how cold it gets, you’ll still find crazy positive attitudes outside and enjoying winter activities! You just reeeeeallly need to dress appropriately.
Until recently, I really had no idea how much One Canadian’s Journey has inspired & encouraged so many people.
I’m always thankful and appreciative when I meet people and they let me know that I’ve inspired them. But when I’ve been receiving emails of personal stories and how my blog & photos have inspired & encouraged them, and what they are doing now, Wow! I’m truly touched and moved. I’m also very stumped because I don’t know what to say, …thank-you! Keep on living life to the fullest!
Be sure to read the About Page Thank-you Everyone!
There are so many beautiful places and people out there,
let’s find them together!
Just north of Gimli MB, on Hwy 8, along the shores of Lake Winnipeg sits a very small & quiet fishing village, called Helca. Actually, everything around here is named “Hecla”…. there’s Hecla Island, Hecla Provincial Park, Hecla Village.
Like most small communities in this area, it was a settlement of Icelandic immigrants who first established this area in 1876.
Currently, there are 9 families living in the village, with a few more families in the nearby areas.
The original Lighthouse was built in 1898, but was reconstructed 1926
Don’t let the following discourage you, because once you get to see the pictographs and the landscape they are located in, its soooo worth it.
There are 2 challenges you’ll have to contend with.
The first is the trail itself. It consists of steep jagged rocks, tree roots, and at times narrow footing. It’s not a long trail, 0.5 km loop, but you do have to watch your footing.
The second challenge is at the end of the trail. This is where most people let their fear take over and don’t go any further. But if you want to see the pictographs, you’ll have to walk along the edge of the rock face while being very careful not to slip. If you slip… you’re sliding 15’ down the smooth & slick rock face, where you’ll be swimming in Lake Superior.
It’s a little nerve racking and adrenaline pumping fun!
Oh, and they only way to make this attempt is when Lake Superior is calm, otherwise forget it. The wrath of Lake Superior’s waves will take you out.
As you’re traveling on Hwy 3 between Hope BC and Lethbridge AB, you’ll notice that its a slow drive but a very beautiful scenic route that passes through several character towns. This section is 997 km and has definitely made it onto My Top Favourite Routes to Drive.
So here’s what happened…
As I continued to soak in and observe my surroundings, a highway sign indicated that the town of Moyie BC was coming up. Good to know.
Not paying much more attention, other than knowing I was entering Moyie, I continued my way through the small town.
Once out of the Moyie and still driving eastbound, I was enjoying the views and that’s when I came across a highway sign, indicating that Moyie was 2 km ahead.
Huh?! Did I not just pass that sign awhile ago? Did I not just drive through Moyie? Did I somehow get turned around? But I haven’t made any turns? What the heck?
My mind was racing for an explanation because I just couldn’t figure it out. And who would believe me? De Ja Vue? Worm Hole? Time Warp?
Now my eyes and attention are totally focused on “Moyie”, looking for other similarities that I had seen.
As I entered Moyie, another sign stated, “Historic Moyie”. Geez… This small town I had just entered was the original Moyie.
Sigh…. That was 2 km of my life’s reality being questioned.
So if you’re driving down Hwy 3, you’ll come across Moyie…you’ll come across Moyie…. again.
Taking a break at a gas station, I got speaking to an older woman who had been hitchhiking.
She looked like she was a little weathered, had a hard life, and she did give hints of it through our conversation, but what was also a noticeable trait… she still had hopes for a better life.
As we conversed, she mentioned that her backpack was jammed pack with a few clothes and 3 blankets, which was getting to be a little too heavy, so she was thinking about ditching one of her blankets with the hopes it would find someone in need.
It’s funny (not is hilarious manner), here’s a lady who wasn’t asking me for anything… she didn’t have anything… but still had hopes for herself and hopes for the blanket to find someone in need.
I could only offer her something she needed more than I did…. I gave her my last gatorade and an emergency blanket.
When I came out of the gas station, I could see her in the distance walking along the highway, up and over a hill, where I eventually lost sight of her.
The Centre of Canada is located near Ritcher MB, east of Winnipeg. Longitudinal Centre of Canada Coordinates – 96 48 35
The TransCanada Hwy is 7821 kms and runs from Victoria BC to St. John’s Newfoundland. The middle of the TransCanada Hwy is marked with a plaque at 3910.5 kms, located at a rest stop, just west of Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario.
Let me introduce you to by buddy, Mike Ranta & his faithful companion Spitzii. These two characters are today’s modern day voyageurs. Along for the adventure is the expedition’s photojournalist, David Jackson, who in his own right is definitely an adventurer.
So here’s what’s happened, Mike has not only canoed Canada from coast to coast, he’s done it twice! As a result of these great paddles, he’s the world record holder of having done it solo and having completing the trip in a single season.
So what’s he doing in Lake Winnipeg near Gimli? He’s in the middle of canoeing Canada for a Third time! Along for the adventure is David, who has joined Mike & Spitzii from the beginning of this adventure.
Back on April 1st 2017, they began their journey in Bella Bella BC and headed east through the rockies. I can’t give away any of their stories, because let’s face it, its theirs to tell at the end of the adventure. I will say, they had to endure solitude, relentless elements, nature, wildlife, food & water shortage, and other adventures within their adventure.
Live location updates – Mike is carrying a beacon which tracks his every movement. Go to his website and locate this whereabouts on his map and if you get an opportunity….go meet the the three companions while they paddle Canada! I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t pass up on a good cold beer either.
You can read about Mike’s & Spitzii’s previous journey through his website and be sure to check out his book. Oh, and check out the baby moose he saved in during his last adventure – video here: Baby Moose Rescue