The true and spectacular North, especially the Northwest Territories have always been hard to reach and 'Adventure' is a word that springs to mind immediately when contemplating this vast and empty territory.
Modern Travel has advanced to daily, scheduled, commercial flights. In recent years we have streamlined travel to South Nahanni and are routing clients via Whitehorse, Yukon, which is serviced several times per day by up to four different commercial carriers. Whitehorse can be reached via Vancouver (British Columbia), Calgary and Edmonton (both Alberta), Ottawa (Ontario) and Frankfurt (Germany).
Whitehorse is the hub and capital of the Yukon Territory. A wide variety of hotels, Bed & Breakfasts, restaurants and vacation options are available here. You will have to plan for a one-night stay before your hunt and another night after your hunt in order to make connections home in a secure manner.
Bush Charter Flight to Base Camp:
The morning after your flight to Whitehorse and following your night there you will leave on your bush plane charter to base camp. The pilots of the local charter company (Tintina Air) will pick you up at your hotel, store your extra luggage (all hard cases, etc.) at their secure hanger and take you into South Nahanni.
If you have never travelled into the bush with small air charter you might be surprised to hear that all flying stops in bad weather. It is almost unheard of in our modern times, but in the bush there are hours and days when you just can't move through the air. Small bush planes, and also the helicopter, fly via pilot's eye sight and not instruments. If it is raining heavily, if there is fog, snow, hail, or ice in the air everyone is grounded. If you can't see the mountain tops you won't be able to fly through, over or around them.
Be prepared for such weather eventualities, mentally and ticket wise. All tickets have to be changeable in case of late (or early) leave from camp.
Also keep in mind distances travelled: Sun in base camp doesn't mean flyable weather in Whitehorse, Yukon, 350 air miles (500 km) farther west. Mountain weather is very local and changes from one valley to the next within the large South Nahanni boundaries.
Larger bush charter machines are equipped with more instruments and can fly in worse weather conditions than smaller aircraft. Still, sometimes they can't fly either. We have streamlined our charter flights in and out of base camp and are offering IFR rated direct flights between Whitehorse and base camp. IFR means that the planes can fly over the clouds, making bad stretches of mountain weather during the 350 air mile flight unimportant. Still, conditions in Whitehorse and especially in base camp have to be flyable. The planes need to be able to leave and land in favourable conditions and a hole of blue sky has to exist in base camp for the pilot to get through the clouds and into the valley in order to land safely on the bush dirt strip.
Your bush charter into remote South Nahanni in the heart of the unexplored ranges of the Mackenzie Mountains is part of this extra-ordinary hunting adventure with us - a throwback into the days of old, but also a transition from our modern lives to our hunting wilderness roots.
Arrival in Base Camp:
Once you arrive in base camp you will meet your outfitters, Werner and Sunny, the guides, helicopter pilot and camp staff. There will be a chance to sort through your gear, making sure you are equipped perfectly, shoot your gun, and have a meal.
As soon as you are set the chopper blades start turning, taking you, your guide and gear to a perfect hunting location in prime game country. Here you will establish spike camp, take a look around and spend the night during your hunting law imposed 12-hour waiting period that applies after every air move.
Day 1 of your hunt will see you hunting the South Nahanni Mountains.
The helicopter will pick you up again from your hunt location after your successful hunt is completed. You might see the helicopter in between when changing hunt locations, or for a food drop/trophy and meat pick up. Contact with base camp is always available via the guide's satellite phone.
Early leave from camp, Trophy and Meat Flying:
Some hunters opt to leave South Nahanni sooner, once they have taken the trophies they came for. We will arrange for a bush charter out and help you re-arrange your travel reservations via satellite phone and internet. Please note that you will have to pay for this additional flight. Clients are welcome to share the flight and charges.
You might wish to take trophies and meat straight back home with you. This option is legally only available to Canadian and American clients due to paperwork restrictions. Every piece of wildlife (horns, meat, hides, drop off antlers, etc.) that leave the Northwest Territories need an export permit, which can only be issued in Fort Simpson, NWT or at Mile 222 on the Yukon border. Please contact us for arrangements (exported items have to be seen in person by a wildlife officer).
All other trophies will be shipped to their owners or taxidermists after the season in late October.
We will be happy to help you in your travel reservations every step of the way, so that you have no problem reaching us in the true and spectacular North of the Northwest Territories! An Adventure getting there...