Labrador: Makkovik Trip
By Leefer White
Mike and Nelson showed up in Goose Bay (Labrador) last Thursday after a long trip from the Island of Newfoundland. In addition to the drive, the pack ice in the Straight turned a 1hr crossing into a 12-hr trip. But they made it in time to get things ready for Thursday so we could leave Friday morning, this trip was completed in 2012.
The weather wasn’t the best Friday, with grey skies and poor visibility, but the temps were pretty good and there was lots of fresh snow.
The XF loaded up for a multi-day trip.
Because of the visibility and forecast for snow, we decided to take the “groomed trail” to Postville. I was reluctant to take the trail because I really wanted to go cross country, but I have to say that when you’re heading north out of Mulligan Bay the trail is still quite an adventure, and quite challenging, with some big hills, lots of fresh snow, lake crossings, stream crossings, barrens, you name it, it’s all there.
Finally we pulled into Postville only to find out that the hotel had been shut down by the electrical inspector, so we trucked on to Makkovik. 12hrs on the trail to cover a little over 300 kms.
The XF is pretty good on fuel when you drive it really easy, and I burned about the same as the VK, and $10 less than the Attack. Mike’s ETEC Renegade of course, was king though, burning about 75% of what I did, and half the oil.
Our original plan had been to go to Nain, but Hector was really worried about the warm temps, and what that would do to the slush on the sea ice, so we decided to drop our gear at the hotel in Makkovik and make a day trip to Hopedale.
One of the biggest issues with travelling on the coast is getting fuel. We had managed to track down the guy who works at the gas station in Makkovik, and we assumed we’d be able to do the same in Hopedale. Deciding to travel with no fuel was a mistake and we barely made it back.
If you’re ever planning a trip to Makkovik and hope to fuel up on Saturday or Sunday, bring a bottle of Irish Whiskey. We gave him a bottle of Lambs and that did the trick, but he said that it was Irish Whiskey that really got him moving.
It was a great day though, as there was a big dog race in Hopedale and the community was just buzzing with people.
The only mechanical issue we had was the starter on the Renegade. Nothing major, and a bit of WD40 fixed it up.
Others weren’t so lucky, as the winner of the Hopedale dog race lost the piston on his 550 on the way back to Makkovik. Our VK hooked on to the Polaris and the Renegade hooked on to the Komitik, and off we went.
Aren’t they the cutest things you’ve ever seen?
Back in Makkovik for the second night after a 200kms 10 hr day.
At the Advalik Inn, we were treated to a fantastic meal of caribou. It was one of the tastiest meals I’ve ever had.
Enjoying a few well-deserved drinks Saturday evening.
The next morning, we decided to take the overland route out of Makkovik, and were we ever glad we did. The scenery was stunning. Not much local traffic ever uses this route because it’s hillier, crosses much more open terrain, and would be a lot harder if you’re pulling a komitik loaded with supplies. But we had a great time of it.
Back in Goose enjoying some cold beer after another long day.