“The World’s Next Great Safari”
Welcome to the heart of polar bear country at Churchill Wild where they specialize in ground-level walking tours through the polar bear inhabited regions of Arctic Canada. Churchill Wild owns and operates the only remote lodges on Canada’s Hudson Bay coast, which is home to the largest and most accessible polar bear population on the planet.
Two years ago, just before the pandemic halted all of my planned travels, I had the unique opportunity to set off on a memorable adventure of a lifetime through Arctic Canada exploring white polar bears and Nordic wildlife, glistening Northern Lights, and the spectacular painted autumn landscape of the Churchill Wild wilderness and tundra. The spectacular memories of my adventures at Churchill Wild have carried me through the last few years of missing epic excursions traveling the world.
My destination at Churchill Wild was the Nanuk Polar Bear Lodge via a scenic flight from Churchill to this remote, spectacular lodge along Canada’s Hudson Bay coast. Upon arriving I got my first look at polar bears frollicking happily in the hills around the town of Churchill. Our next stop via a short flight on a small prop plane was off to the Nanuk Polara Bear Lodge where w spotted many roaming polar bears upon our journey there from the skies. The next several days dellivered more polar bear viewings, black bears, wolves, along with many species of shorebirds and a moose or two along the way. Visitors to this remote destination have even spotted caribou on their daily hikes and ATV excursions. The Nanuk Polar Bear Lodge is one of four unique specialty lodges offered through Churchill Wild. They are recognized as a proud member of National Geographic’s Unique Lodges of the World.
The “Hudson Bay Odyssey” gathered a handful of other eager Arctic adventurists including me(7 on our advanture and up to a max 16 explorers) to the remote Nanuk Polar Bear Lodge deep in the heart of the polar bear denning territory, where the boreal forest ends and the Subarctic begins. It is quite ironic that my journey took me to the Nanuk Lodge as in college, I was nicknamed “Nanuk of the North.” It seems I was destined to explore this vast and impressive landscape in the Canadian Arctic tundra.
It was truly an epic journey and experience much of what I would have ever imagined seeing ever in my lifetime. “Touch the Arctic. Change your life.” I took many guided walks on the wild side of Churchill WIld amongst the untouched tundra of this wild country where I had the opportunity to meet polar bears up close and personal, along with world-class service, accommodations, and cuisine at the only fly-in Polar Bear Eco-Lodges on the planet – Churchill Wild.
These unique lodges and polar bear safaris are offered from July through November. The emphasis of their daily treks is on their walking safari’s, viewing a diverse array of wildlife and birds, open-air cruising on one of their custom-made large ATVs perfect for cruising the vast tundras nourished by the Hudson Bay coastal waters and indulging in impressive tundra-inspired cuisine.
Being the foodie that I am, I already knew before I even arrived there that I was in for a real treat after my mesmerizing days out exploring the breathtaking boreal bounty of the wilderness. The bounty of Churchill Wild’s cuisine sets them apart as their culinary history takes them back over 50 years where it all started with Helen Webber (mother to Jeanne Reimer, co-founder of Churchill Wild and her friend Marie Woolsey.) Their legendary series of best-selling cookbooks offer up innovative regional tundra cuisine filled with wild game and delicious dessert recipes. Blueberries and Polar Bears cookbooks – www.BlueBerriesAndPolarBears.com
In fact, Jeanne has developed a signature style of her own, which was coined as “tundra-inspired gourmet food.” Twenty-five years ago, they took their vision and created this destination adventure. Churchill Wild has transformed to become so much more than a polar bear safari at their elegantly rustic remote lodges in the tundra. They have melded in the element of rustically sophisticated savory creations on your plate into the perfect destination Canadian Arctic Safari.
After visiting the recipes and photos on their cookbook website – Blueberries and Polar Bears, and the Churchill Wild website, my mouth was watering with anticipation before every meal served at the lodge. Their bountiful breakfasts are fit for a king and will surely set you right for your day exploring along this Hudson Bay retreat. Always included is their own inspired version of Red River Cereal. Lunch is often enjoyed in the wild outdoors with gourmet sandwiches and homemade cookies. Yum. I indeed did not go hungry one bit. Crusted Caribou Tenderloin and Cranberry Cake with Butter Sauce their signature dessert, are two of their popular creations for the evening’s fare.
Upon our return from each of the day’s exhilarating journeys, a little chill time by the fire and visiting with newfound friends was in order before we headed over to the intimate and inviting table for our evening journey of culinary treats. Another unique, memorable evening treat was the surprise viewing of the Aurora Borealis. I was keeping my fingers crossed for that one and my wish came true!!
As they say at the lodge, “Your sustenance is our mission.”
Packing for my Churchill Wild adventure to the Canadian Tundra – Remember Dynie, I would not be in sunny warm Napa in the fall!
Dressing and preparing for the Canadian Arctic was essential!
- A must! Cameras and Chargers, Binoculars. Don’t forget the extra memory cards
- Dress in layers – also a warm spring and fall jacket
- Thin mitts, warm sweater or heavy fleece, warm parka, hiking socks, winter hat, long underwear
- Notebook for jotting down memories of each day
- Day pack, dry bag, sunscreen and rubber boot insoles, sunglasses, slippers, and comfortable shoes for the relaxing evenings
What to expect!
- Meet and Share Many Experiences with new Friends
- Lots of photo opportunities and there are even professional photos leaders to guide us
- Get up close and personal with polar bears and wildlife beyond my imagination
- Experience the Aurora Borealis
- Indulge in Tundra-inspired cuisine with recipes created by Co-Founder and Best-selling cookbook author – Jeanne Reimer
- Create memories to last a lifetime!