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Follow The Climbs - Quebec and Newfoundland & Labrador:
Mt. Caubvick, D'Iberville

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Newfoundland & Labrador   Quebec

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Climbing / Trip Summary

The team of Len Vanderstar, Brian & Laura Friedrich lucked out with a timely weather window to successfully reach the summits of Mount d’Iberville and Mount Caubvick on July 19, 2014 via the Koroc Ridge. From the mountain top, icebergs could be seen floating in the Atlantic ocean and the vast expanse of the Torngat Mountain Range provided a splendid backdrop.

Given the excellent weather and dryness of the rock, the team opted for a traverse descent of the Minaret Ridge. Although the arete traverse is not considered technical, a misstep or slip could be fatal if climbers were unroped. The three member team roped up for most of the traverse, ensuring a safe return, despite adding significant time to the climb. All told, the climb/traverse amounted to 23 hours (base camp to base camp), inclusive of down time on top of the mountain peaks and taking in the scenery, from 4:30 a.m. July 19 to 4:00 a.m. July 20. The high points of Quebec and Newfoundland/Labrador are truly a destination of impressive landscape character in one of the most remote places in Canada.

With continued exceptional weather post climb, the party did a memorable 25 km return hike on July 21 from base camp to a high plateau affectionately named Wave Plateau. Looking down on the Palmer River flowing into the Tallek Arm of Nachvak Fiord was the best it could get from a visual perspective. Most impressive was Brian’s and Laura’s claim to fame in doing the hike in river shoes.

July 23 saw the crew commence their epic 165 km paddle down the Koroc River to Ungava Bay in the Arctic Ocean, effectively paddling across the peninsula over 9 days, inclusive of four half day paddles and two exploratory days near the splendid Korluktok Falls. Brian and Laura mastered the pack-rafts in a variety of rapids and Len paddled an inflatable kayak; some rapids had to be lined, others run and some portaged.

The Koroc River is one of the finest gems of waterways in Canada, with true wilderness qualities and crystal clear aqua-blue water sourced from the Canadian Shield. The team took note of the many waterfalls that descend into the Koroc River's glacial carved U-shaped valley, especially after the timely rains that were needed to bring the water levels up to optimum conditions.

Paddling into tree line was a sensory experience, with the fragrance of larch and spruce satiating our nostrils. Black bears, meadow voles and rough legged hawks were the main fauna observed at distance and at close quarters. Despite the efforts to spot caribou, unfortunately none were seen, somewhat attributed to their summer range being elsewhere, and the unprecedented decline of the George River and Torngat caribou herds. Arctic char greeted the paddlers upon their arrival at the class 5 set of rapids into Ungava Bay.

This trip was truly about the journey, self-discovery and topped off with success of the objective. Interaction with the local Inuit from Kangiqsualujjuaq (Very Big Bay) was a wonderful experience, inclusive of eating raw seal on the rocks!

The entire trip was pretty well within the confines of Torngat Mountains National Park and Kuururjuaq Park. It is definitely near the top of the list with Summits of Canada expeditions.

Please note that travel within the Torngat Mountains and Park Kuururjuaq must not be taken lightly, and one should expect and be prepared for all weather conditions, inclusive of high winds during storm events. And do not complain about wind, or find yourself complaining about mosquitoes on the tundra, and black flies in the forests. They will be part of the experience on the journey. Overall, the insects are not bad if one is prepared with bug dope and/or netting. Of course some days are worse than others depending on location, temperature, humidity and wind; more often than not, bug nets were not required, other than around camp in the morning and evening on occasion.


CanaTREK, the Summits of Canada Expedition Team - Since 2006
"Teaching Canadians and the World about Canada - One Step At A Time"