Caribou Migration Explorer

7 Days/6 Nights

Every Autumn (Aug-Sep), with the arrival of the northern lights, the Qamanirjuaq Caribou herd leaves their summer calving grounds and journeys five hundred kilometers southward to their winter home. The Qamanirjuaq Caribou number in the hundreds of thousands and are one of the healthiest herds in Canada. Several narrow sections of Ennadai Lake provide natural crossing places for the Caribou. The Ennadai Lake area is also one of the most important locations in the arctic for migratory bird life.

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Day 1 Yellowknife to Arctic Haven Lodge This morning depart by private charter plane for the 500 mile journey to Arctic Haven Wilderness Lodge. Nestled on the tree line, Arctic Haven is situated on the shores of one of the largest expanses of water on the Barrens, a one hundred mile lake called Ennadai. Guests are welcomed into the lodge, and a short introduction is given while guests are given the opportunity to settle into their private rooms. Prior to dinner, a short excursion by foot into the tree line is led by polar-guide Richard Weber. We begin to scout for the caribou following the natural eskers; paths worn into well-defined trails from centuries of migratory travel.

Day 2 – 6 Wildlife Viewing with evening viewing the Aurora Borealis Guests are given a short introduction each day prior to heading out either by snowmobile (May tours) or onto the waters of Ennadai Lake by boat (September tours).

Arctic Haven has eighteen beautifully crafted custom aluminum boats designed for travelling on the lake. Travelling by boat is an excellent chance to take in the surrounding landscapes, shifting from trees to barren hills as we travel along the shoreline, away from the tree line towards the local islands. Migratory birds including eagles, tundra swans falcons and over 25 species of ducks call the water’s edge home. The local islands, some only a few hundred feet wide, are used by the Qamanirjuaq caribou to cross the lake. Often seen swimming in herds of two to twenty, the caribou “island hop” on their migration south. Other wildlife also use these islands. Arctic wolves follow the caribou herds across the islands while martins, black bears and arctic hares also call the protected berry rich island coves home during the summer and fall months.

Daily excursions explore different regions specifically looking for Caribou, Wolf, Grizzly or Black Bears.

Guests are given free time in the evening to wander – calm, clear and cool evenings are perfect for unspoiled aurora borealis viewings during the fall season at Arctic Haven.

Day 7 Arctic Haven Lodge to Yellowknife In the late afternoon, the plane will arrive to take guests back to Yellowknife. Guests can choose to spend some time visiting Yellowknife or catch a flight south.

Inclusions

  • 6 night accommodation at Arctic Haven Wilderness Lodge
  • Fully guided daily activities:
    • By snowmobile (May)
    • By boat (September)
  • Charter flights to/from Yelloknife
  • Equipment for each excursion
  • Gourmet meals

Not included:

  • Wine
  • Gratuities
  • Fishing license

Canada & Alaska Destinations