The best possible explanation about the land, the animals, the camps and level of service that Great Canadian Wildlife Adventures provides is best described by our valued customers who have undergone their own journeys to the Arctic with us. The following testimonials are for real. If you are seriously considering joining us on our trips, please feel free to contact us, and we will be pleased to put you directly in touch with those who have attended our trips over the past few seasons - and then let THEM tell you about the wonderful experiences that Great Canadian Wildlife Adventures has to offer you...
Nothing is like the North in the fall – brilliant crisp days and deep brisk nights, punctuated by vivid Northern Lights dancing across a breath-taking canopy of stars as loons sang their haunting calls in the distance. Our guides provided expert tracking allowing us to stalk and photograph abundant Musk Oxen without stressing them. We caught fish from the pristine lake, and hiked the rolling tundra, identifying small animal habitats, animal tracks, plants, lichens, and birds as we traversed the dense vegetation. Wild landscapes rolled on forever, captured in stunning photos with striking blue-bird skies and majestic clouds. A stunning lake-side site, knowledgeable and congenial guides, first class equipment, and hearty food, made the remote camp comfortable and homey for a great experience. I anticipated primitive camping far from “civilization” with sleeping bags on the hard ground. Instead, we had roomy tents, cozy sleeping bags on cots, and even the surprising luxury of a shower. The Muskox, Autumn Colours & Aurora trip delivered as promised, far exceeding my expectations! My family and friends are amazed at the fantastic photos that give just a small taste of this incredible experience. Twenty years ago, I met Tundra Tom on my first visit to the Canadian North. I had a magical time in the brief tundra summer on the Thelon, tracking musk-ox and caribou, viewing Gyrfalcons on the nest, canoeing pristine lakes, and enjoying lazy evening campfires as we watched the Northern Lights traverse the sky among a dazzling array of stars! Beautiful landscapes, and a great camp made the trip a once in a lifetime experience. A year later, I joined Tundra Tom again as the autumn showed another aspect of tundra beauty, with carpets of red and gold fall colors rolling across the tundra, caribou migrating, and even a dusting of snow! I am happy I caught up with him again for my trip this year.
- Michelle Wallace
Dear Tom, thank you for organizing a wonderful trip. Kathy and I have had many trips in many countries. We had visited the north in the Yellowknife area plus I consulted to the Yukon for 10 years. I had always wanted to see the caribou migration and you made that possible. We had a great supporting crew that were knowledgeable and enthusiastic. We arrived to a fully set up camp and between seeing and photographing the northern lights, learning from Marc about his people and their culture and finally having the caribou arrive just a day and half before we had to leave, we had a great trip. I hope you can continue to run similar tours for many years and we are happy to recommend your operation.
- Colin Leech-Porter & Kathy Scalzo
"The Autumn Musk Ox and Northern Lights adventure was a magical experience. I went in hopes of seeing the Northern Lights, and was delighted on my first night to have them come out and dance across the sky. It was an amazing welcome to the camp where the next 10 days were filled with new discoveries. I didn't expect the tundra to be such a microcosm of plant life. It was carpeted with many varieties of wild berries. We picked blueberries, cranberries, cloudberries and treated ourselves to making blueberry pancakes. The soft bounce of the tundra put on a new twist to hiking. One of the many highlights was coming across a fox den with a curious young cross fox who couldn't keep his eyes off the two of us. After we passed by, I looked back and his head was peaking over the bushes with his gaze still following us. That was such a sweet encounter with wildlife, not one of fear but curiosity. We had other thrills; coming across the musk ox, a bear, and bringing in lake trout for dinner. The food was plentiful, but there was something special about being in the wild and being able to gain sustenance from it. The wildlife, stunning vistas, the dramatic sunsets, the Northern Lights, the pure air and water, and the very competent and friendly staff made it a truly magical adventure. This is Inuit territory and we were fortunate to touch their world."
- Joanne Chow Winship
"Hi Tom, back from Paradise where you can drink water from the river, eat berries from bushes and where caribous are only curious about that creature with a big eye - telelens - and are not frightened. They looked at me for some time before walking away."
- Dr. Volker Schenk (2016)
Thank you so much for taking care of our family during our stay in Kuujjuaq!
We are so glad to know that there's such a place we never imagine that exist on the same earth... full of beauty of nature, creatures and spirit. Mosquito was not a big issue now, I feel. I don't know how we forget tough things very easily...:)
Both Ned & I found you have such a sweet and big heart to support their environment and community and we are more than happy to help! We met lots of kids there in Kuujjuaq and they were very friendly. Some kids asked me how I liked Kujjuuaq and I answered them that they were lucky because they have such a beautiful land.
They listened to me very curiously and quietly. I sometimes think of them and try to find out the things we can do from here to support the community. They should have a bright future just like they used to once upon a time...
We miss you and please tell our best regards to Mariela and Allen!
- Ned & Yuki Shimizu (2016)
Hi there Tom - Thank you so much for your wise guidance on our caribou shoot! The crew was very happy with the professionalism of your team and we achieved our goal: the footage looks amazing! I know capturing the caribou is a bit of a crap shoot but your diligence paid off. Many thanks!!
- Jennifer Scott / Director
Polar Bears & Musk-oxen wildlife expedition to Ungava Bay in Nunavik,
Thought I would post a quick review of this trip. We flew to Kuujjuaq and after that to Tasiujaq and we come back by boat to Kuujjuaq. We spent 5 nights in the camp. The camp was very comfortable. Each client had his own huge clean tent, and the food exceeded expectations. Every day we were on the boat looking for wildlife and landscape. The landscape was amazing. We saw icebergs, wild tundra, and scenic mountains. About the wildlife: We saw a mother bear and cubs, seals and many musk-oxen. I remember it was almost at the end of the trip and I was sitting next to Captain James of the boat and he told me ” It is your lucky day.” At that moment I understood that he saw the polar bear. It was very exciting to see them in the water. We hiked a few times to see the musk-oxen. It was nice to see them peaceful in the wild. It was a very good experience in the wilderness. Nobody was around us and it was VERY peaceful. The weather was perfect and no bugs. The expedition staff (Murray, James, Mariela) were excellent and very attentive. The atmosphere was warm. There were so many opportunities to chat with them and to ask questions. It was very interesting to learn more about the Inuit people. In summary, I would highly recommend this expedition: It was a fantastic "taste" of Nunavik.
- Mario Girard (2016)
This summer I returned to Nunavik, where last year I enjoyed two back-to-back “muskox, autumn colors, and aurora” trips with Great Canadian Wildlife Adventures (GCWA). This time I went for the “summer caribou migration” trip doing, as before, two back-to-back trips. As a professional wildlife cinematographer, my goal was to get footage of the migration so being on location for as long as possible is important. But also as a professional wildlife image-maker, my goal is to be in the wilderness, to experience the sense of place, and to ensure that my footage represents the truly wild.
Twenty years of being in this business has brought major changes, not the least of which is photography being done with captive models, which result in close-up images of “wildlife.” I’ve witnessed how photographers now often expect “wildlife” to be in a place right on schedule, up close, and available “on-demand.” For me, a big part of being a wildlife cinematographer is having the opportunity to be in a wild landscape exploring all of its nuances. While my business focuses on “getting the shot,” my spirit requires the wilderness to recharge & reconnect. GCWA trips fit the ticket on both counts, which is why I’ve returned, and will continue to do so.
Inuit canoe expeditions upriver or hikes across the spectacular glaciated landscape with our guides brought us into breathtaking scenery. We viewed black bears, muskox, peregrine falcons, and wolves. Tundra flowers and berries, aurora dancing in the night skies, and dining on freshly caught Arctic char immersed us in this timeless panorama. As a cinematographer, and someone who needs wilderness to restore my soul, all of that makes up the story of being on one of these trips. Having a comfortable camp, with good food and camaraderie makes it even more special.
Changing climates affect wildlife everywhere; Nunavik is no exception. Wildlife runs on its own schedule; Nature is in charge! Tundra Tom, with his Inuit colleagues, ensures that guests, based on historical movements of animals, are at the right place, at the right time to experience the wildlife on a given trip. Of course, Nature doesn’t always run as we expect and timing might be a bit off. But, that is wilderness. That is true wildlife. That is what being a wildlife professional is all about: working with the best outfit that knows the area & animals, maximizing your time on location (which is why I always do back-to-back trips), and knowing that, even though I may not get that “money shot,” I’ll have had a fantastic wilderness experience where my spirit reconnects to the natural world.
Thankfully, Tundra Tom and GCWA know the right places, the right timing, and have the right operation to be in the right place not only for that experience, but also to get the money shot! The caribou migration was no exception: we could see the tracks worn into the rocky hillsides and across the tundra where caribou hooves have etched their mark into the landscape from ages of migrating on these very paths. When the caribou arrived, cresting the hills above camp, flowing down the slopes towards their river crossings, we were waiting. For two days, we watched, photographed, filmed – and just enjoyed – the natural wild beauty of this endless cycle as throng after throng of caribou passed by us. I’m already planning my next trips with GCWA!
- Beth Davidow - Cinematographer
This year 2016 I joined GCWA as a guide and enjoyed the opportunity to share the “North” with clients. I have seen some amazing wildlife this summer, Tundra Wolves, Caribou, Black and Polar Bear, Seals and Musk Ox! Have also seen the huge tidal flows of Ungava Bay and enjoyed huge displays of Northern Lights. One of the key highlights for me has been showing people that the Tundra isn’t just about wildlife! This part of the world with huge extremes in climate has expansive views, clean water, plants that cope with the challenging environment and ever changing vistas and moods. It was great to see people slow down, enjoy the little things (blueberry picking as an example), and develop their own bond as they started to understand more of what makes the Arctic special.
- Murray Douglas (2016)
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