Churchill, Manitoba, Canada
Polar Bear Sow & 2 cubs walking across a frozen lake.
“Leave only footprints, take only memories” (…and maybe some pictures)

Day 5

October 27, 2016 5:20am I, again, woke up early.  Not great sleeping conditions for me.  I was awake and alone so I dictated a lot of information about the tour and Lodge.  I will put that at the end of the vacation itinerary so you won’t have to wade thru it to read on. 6:10am I watched two Artic Hares munching on some grasses (?) and running around next to and under the Tundra Lodge.  Very dark out and I could only see them in the lights from the Lodge.  I did try to get photos but I don’t think they came out good.  I was surprised at how large the Artic Hare is compared to the rabbits I have back home.  They look huge!  Looking on the internet, the rabbits around my upstate NY home range in size from 14” to 20” (2 – 3.5 pounds).  The Artic Hare is 19” – 30” (6 - 12 pounds). 6:30am Coffee. 7:00am Breakfast. 8:00am Other group left for safari and I am wandering the Lodge looking for wildlife (outside). 8:15am I took a photo of a frost-split rock.  Moisture gets into a tiny opening in the rock, it freezes and enlarges the opening.  More moisture and more ice and eventually the rock splits looking like sheaves of paper, a book wide open at the binding. Also got a photo of bear that actually is a big yellowish rock.  (Note:  Polar Bears are not really white.  They are somewhere between off-white and yellow.  Justin kept telling us to look for a huge potato chip.) Now I am heading for the shower. 9:00am Photos of scenery and lodge. 9:30am Photos of rovers/buggies as seen from the Lodge. 11:40am More photos from the Lodge. 12:10pm The afternoon tour group is done with lunch.  Lunch was open face ham and cheese with tomato sandwiches plus salad.  They try to feed us early so that we can head out quicker.  I just feel sorry for Jason, as there is only one Rover driver and I’m not sure he got a chance to have lunch between safari groups. 12:15pm Everyone is onboard the Rover except the driver and the guide.  We are anxious and ready to get going.  See some bears! 12:30pm We are moving.  The afternoon tundra safari has started. 1:20pm Balloon/rocket launch from US military cold war tactics. 1:22pm Polar Bear off in the distance and some scenery. 2:20pm One Polar Bear investigating another tundra vehicle, another one walks the beach and a very photogenic Artic Hare. 3:00pm The Polar Bear that was near the tundra vehicle wanders the beach and heads in our direction. 3:30pm Scenery shots from the Polar Rover. 4:00pm We are back at the Lodge. 4:30pm Sitting in the lounge chatting and enjoying a glass of wine with the other guests. 6:00pm Dinner time.  Another great meal by Shane and Shelley!  Thank you both. 7:00pm Rover tire prints in the snow. 7:20pm Presentation by Justin on Artic Foxes, which we didn’t see.  Bummer.  (Okay, we saw the presentation, but we never saw an Artic Fox while we were there.)  Studies show that Artic Fox can withstand some of the coldest temperatures better than most other animals. We have been informed that since the Polar Bear viewing hasn’t been great during our short stay on the tundra we are doing something a little outside the norm.  Instead of half the group going on safari the entire group will be going out for the whole next day.  This is to maximize the chances for everyone to see a good number of bears. 8:10pm The day is done.  I am heading to my ‘room’ and will watch my kindle while I wind down from the day’s activities.
Polar Bear Adventure, October 23 - 31, 2016
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