Box 1320, Kuujjuaq, Nunavik (QC), J0M 1C0, Canada
Phone: +608-370-5071 / Email
: tundra@thelon.com


Meet our 2017 Staff

The North has always been, and probably always will be a meeting place for unlikely characters...

Throughout circumpolar history, many a famous alliance - both holy and less savory - have been established on the steps of trading posts, in musky trappers' cabins, hidden in the dark corners of pubs and huddled around the warmth of late night campfires...

People who meet as strangers in the isolated climes share the common bond of the immensity of the northern experience, and usually become fast friends for life.  Knowing this, we at Great Canadian Wildlife Adventures nurture each and every guest with the confidence that we too will become friends ... forever. 


Manager / Coordinator - 'Tundra Tom'
Operations Manager / bush pilot / lead guide / field manager / ex-outhouse hole digger ... he washes dishes sometimes too! Following in the legacy of his father, this is Tom's 52nd season working as a guide, adventure outfitter and bush pilot in Canada's Far North. During his career he has organized and operated hundreds of remote adventure & wildlife expeditions for over 4000 adventurers in Northern Ontario, Manitoba, BC, Alberta, the NWT, Nunavut, Nunavik & Labrador. Tom has also organized, guided and flown many documentary film crews and media trips including BBC, CBC, PBS, National Geographic, Conde Nast, Outdoor Photographer, Animal Planet, and more.

Trip Leader - Thomas Groening
Thomas is joining us on the field in Nunavik for his third season as main trip leader and field manager. Hailing from Manitoba Canada, Tom is a passionate student of the natural world, and a seasonal tall-grass prairie conserver & interpreter from the heart of the continent amidst the grasslands. He is an avid outdoor adventurer and traveler with a certification of outdoor education from the National Outdoor Leadership School. He is happy in the great expanses of the outdoors which is likely why keeps heading back to the northlands! Tom is a excellent interpreter and field manager, and we are very pleased to work with him again!

As wilderness guides, naturalists, biologists, photo leaders, boat captains and bush pilots, we have spent many years designing and leading unprecedented adventures to some of the most remote and least explored regions in Canada.  Using the very best of modern technology and combining it with two generations of experience and knowledge allows us to present distant travels in safety, style - and with charm...


Trip Leader - Murray Douglas
Joining us for his second season, Murray is a New Zealander with a passion for the outdoors and who enjoys the wide open spaces of the Canadian Far North. He has been Instructing in NZ for nearly 20 years along with leading many trips both hiking and canoeing. His experience in the Arctic includes wilderness trips in Alaska, then NWT, and two seasons with us in Nunavik. Murray has NZ Outdoors First Aid, NZMSC Bush Two Qualification and Paddle Canada Intermediate White-water Qualification. He has a great passion to sharing his knowledge and exploring the amazing opportunities the North has to offer!


Trip Leader - Allen Gordon
We are pleased to again have Allen Gordon of Kuujjuaq as an associate trip leader on our musk-ox expeditions this summer. In November 2013 he was officially honoured as a Fellow of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society. For several years Allen has been a leader in broadening knowledge of the Nunavik region of Canada by undertaking unique and innovative projects on environmental issues related to wildlife and fauna protection. Allen is also an avid dog team musher
. He is an eloquent and great purveyor of the rich local Inuit history of his personal Nunavik Inuit heritage - and we are excited to be working with Allen again for his forth season!

To accomplish this end, we have the privilege to work with some of the best guides available - for we at Great Canadian Wildlife Adventures know that we are only as good as the leaders who represent us... 


Trip Leader - Marc Carrier
Marc has been raised along the northern coast of Ungava Bay. He has spent much of his life hunting and traveling along the seacoast and on the Ungava Peninisula. An experienced boatman in Arctic waters, we are pleased that Marc is joinng us for his second season working on our caribou migration expeditions. Marc says: "I have been camping, fishing and hunting since childhood. I first started camping with family, learning from my elders about the wildlife and environment. Where animals roam and migrate, and how to catch them. We are like our game, rarely stop doing subsistence activities throughout the year. Seasons mean different opportunities and different animals to harvest. We also learned to respect wildlife and the environment. I hope to show you some of Inuit culture and experience of wildlife as we see it from our perspective.


Trip Leader - Mariela Urra Schiaffino
Joining us for her second season, Mariela is a professional naturalist guide and photographer from Chile. She arrived to Canada directly from Patagonia where she spent 3 years working as a trekking and horseback guide in Torres del Paine National Park, well known for its mountain peaks and puma (cougars). It was here where she developed a strong interest for wildlife and environmental conservation. She specialized in birds and animal observation, photographic expeditions and developed ornithology lectures. Her passion for the outdoors and adventure had taken her to to many places including Atacama dessert, Tierra del Fuego, the Bolivian Amazon and the Rocky Mountains. Mariela is a graduate from the National Outdoors Leadership School Patagonia (NOLS). She has her Wilderness First Responder (WFR) international certification; Outdoor trekking and Birdwatching Guide certificate.

Although we are educators in our respective fields, we never lose focus of the fact that we too are students of nature...


Trip Leader - Captain James May
Ungava Inuit by heritage, James is has been born and raised in Nunavik, and is a direct decendant of the famed aviation family of Johnny & Bill May - his uncle & father. James has spent much of his life hunting and guiding along the seacoast of Ungava Bay and Leaf Inlet. Well known as a great sustenance hunter, he is often assigned the responsibility of supplying his community with 'country foods'. A highly experienced boatman in Arctic waters, we are pleased that James is joinng us for his second season working as skipper on our polar bears & musk-oxen expeditions along the Ungava Bay coast.

While exploring together with you, we will learn and share new discoveries and trade the enlightenments of our life experiences...


Dr. L. David Mech & (the late) Galen Rowell scouting for wolves


Girly
Girly - a Siberian husky mix - is joining us on the tundra for her seventh season as a camp mascot. She has some important jobs with us while on the land. For example she sometimes attracts wild wolves in close to camp who either want to eat her alive or mate with her. She also keeps an eye out for wandering bears; and enthusiastically eats all the leftovers. Seven years ago Girly lost her husband to a wild wolf on the tundra of the NWT - so she has earned her right of passage, and then some. We are pleased to have Girly-Girly pooper-dooker back on the tundra with us again this summer!


Oscar
Saved from certain death when he was abandoned at the Kuujjuaq dump as a pup in 2015, Oscar, a true Inuit sled dog, has since adapted trip leader Thomas Groening and now runs the entire show. His important work as another camp mascot is to chase away wild critters, snuffle everyone's luggage, eat leftovers and to sniff Girly's backside. It will be great to have Oscar back to his homeland this coming summer!

 


Click photo to enlarge

So, in the flickering firelight and the quiet of the Arctic evening -

come warm yourself by our fire. 

Let us spin some tales of old... Let us read to you a bit from the journals of the early explorers, and share with you the stories about their remarkable discoveries & strange fates.

Come North and join us to explore these incredible lands & waters. Perhaps let us show you some of the magical and hidden places we have discovered here...


Tom showing off again...

Allow us the opportunity to share with you some of the amazing things we have learned about the special relationship between the traditional people, the wild animals, the land and seas of the incredible Far North....

 

Learn more about our 'minimal footprint' field ethics


Our most notable field accomplishments


Learn about our aviation history in the Far North



Click here to download our current trip calendars in PDF

 


Trip leaders & clients on an interpretive esker hike

 

50 years! Some Important Staffers of the Past:


Ahuya & Murray at North Diana Lake


Mariela snacking on the tundra


Tom & Girly on the Koksoak River, Nunavik


Kevin Mattice guiding photographers on the Nunavik tundra

c
Thomas, Shelby, Oscar & Michael at Kaslak Lake - photo Cyndie Koopsen


Allen Gordon out guiding clients for musk-ox near Ungava Bay


Thomas, Marcel, Rachel & Matilde at Real Lake, Nunavik

Gary, Rachel & Vanessa at Finger Lake, Nunavik


Tom doing a 'reading' at the autumn wildlife camp in Nunavik


Tom, Jaime, Adele, Graham & Dan at Mistastin Lake, Labrador


Sebastian Matton on the upper Thelon


Tom out guiding looking for caribou - Mistastin Lake, Labrador


Terry, Larry, Alicia, Steve & Andrew at Whitefish Lake, NWT


Brad with beaver C-FNOT at Whitefish Lake, NWT


Steve, Bob & Bon at Whitefish Lake campfire, NWT


The two Steves at Chesterfield Inlet, Nunavut


Terry Elliott at the Whitefish camp NWT - 10 years with us!

Andrew MacPherson on the NWT eskers - 4 years with us!

Bill Sirota at the Air Thelon Office - Yellowknife NWT


Lloyd Comber at Whitefish Lake, NWT - over 20 years with us!


Craig in the Whitefish camp kitchen

Naomi at the Great Canadian Office in Yellowknife

Steve Maka & Brigit at Whitefish Lake, NWT

Chie & Katsu in Yelowknife NWT

Andrew, Larry & Tom at the Upper Thelon River, NWT


Steve Lybeck at the Thelon Bluffs in Nunavut - over 35 years with us!


Joan at the Air Thelon office in Yellowknife
Grant in the Camp kitchen at Whitefish Lake

Judith & Vonya in Nunavut

Max Finkelstein at the Bluffs in Nunavut

Tom & Grant exploring Medicine wheels - Red Deer River Alberta

Terry & Tom guiding to ancient villages & totems - Brooks Peninsula BC

Andrea cooking campfire dinner at Lynx Lake NWT

(The late) Marcella Faess in the Lynx Tundra kitchen, NWT

(The late) Hank Faess in Northwestern Ontario

(The late) Bill Betzhold - Eileen River, NWT

 


Where it all began: Carl, Tom & Hank Faess - Three generations together guiding fisherman at Lori Falls on Copper Lake, NW Ontario in the 1960's

 

 

Great Canadian Wildlife Adventures

Click here to download our current trip calendars in PDF

 

Great Canadian Wildlife Adventures, Inc. is proud to be affiliated with:

Turismo Responsable

 

 

Come warm yourself by our fire.
Great Canadian Wildlife Adventures

Phone: +608-370-5071
Email: tundra@thelon.com
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