20 July 2011
Previous Expeditions

Kite-Skiing Great Slave Lake

We met in Yellowknife on March 15th, Kathy Braegger from SanDiego, Chris De Lapunete from London (UK), Chris Weyers from Melbourne, Michael Archer from New Zealand and myself (Richard Weber). Our goal was to improve our kite-skiiing skills in preparation for a South Pole expedition. We did a couple of days of cross country skiing out of Yellowknife just to improve our technical skills. Then we skied out onto Great Slave Lake pulling sleds which also contained our kiting gear. The first morning was -34C, a bit of a shock, but them the temperature slowly warmed. Temperatures were typically about -15 C in the day under bridge sunshine but warmed up to -1C by the end.

Once out on the Lake, we camped, spent a day kiting a little in extremely low wind. Roger Buckley, a commercial fisherman came by checking his nets. He gave us a huge (maybe 10lbs) fish called an “inconnu”. Fired in a little butter, It was so amazingly delicious! The next day was good wind, so we packed our cross country gear and changed into our kiting gear. Being inexperienced kiters and having no experience travelling in a group we were really inefficient. The first day we only managed 15 km and the following day, 20 km. But by day three with the kites we feeling good. We travelled most of the day using the three-meter kites to have better control. We covered 60 kilometers heading up into the North arm. The entire team was thrilled with our progress. The next day, we covered the remaining 20 km to the end of the North Arm of Great Slave Lake. We still had one spare day, so the next day we kited around the bay covering over 100 km, back and forth and up and down. Using his GPS, Chris Weyers clocked himself at almost 40 kph!