One crisp December evening, we were sitting around a warm fire with Clay and Rachelle of Expedition Overland, brainstorming ideas for the next series of episodes, when Richard suggested the bright idea to drive to Tuktoyaktuk, Northwest Territories. We spent years driving south, but had never travelled north to the Arctic Ocean. Since the plan was to film for Expedition Overland, it made sense to do so in the winter. Why? We could only assume that viewers would prefer to watch us suffer in the cold, wind, and snow. Plus, we couldn’t dispel the iconic scenes of translucent ice roads, buffalo roaming across the Alaska Highway, or sprawling snow-covered Arctic tundra from our heads.
Without time for second thoughts, we hopped in Expedition Overland’s 2016 Toyota Tacoma and set a course to the Canadian Arctic, in February.
The XO team finished up the edits a mere six weeks after we returned. The first episode of the five-part original series premiered last night, and we had a blast watching it! Episodes will be released every Thursday at 7 pm MDT on Expedition Overland’s YouTube Channel.
This project was an incredible learning experience for us. Travelling in Arctic winter conditions was a huge challenge and it was imperative for us to use our resourcefulness, patience and ability to adapt during this trip. We planned, photographed and filmed the entire journey. The responsibility of capturing the story pushed us to film when we didn’t necessarily want to, but it was well worth it. We loved every minute of it and can’t wait to create more videos in the future.
Without further ado, we present the Expedition Overland Arctic Solo Series. Any questions about the trip? Comments? Say hello in the comments section, we would love to hear from you.
Preparing the 2016 Toyota Tacoma for an Arctic Road Trip
The Expedition Overland team ready the Toyota Tacoma for -35F winter conditions and ice roads. Modifications include a new heating system, tires, camera storage and a charging station. Crew members Richard and Ashley prepare for departure.
“US-Canada Border Crossings are Easy,” They Said
Despite facing challenges at the border, Richard and Ashley visit the scenic Icefields Parkway near Jasper, Alberta, soak in the Liard River Hot Springs, and continue up the Alaska Highway to Whitehorse, Yukon.
Trapped on the Dempster Highway For Seven Days
Richard and Ashley try the famous Sourtoe Cocktail and meet some amazing local residents in Dawson City. Next up… the Dempster Highway – known for its remote but beautiful scenery and resident wildlife. It’s not long before inclement weather conditions threaten the duo’s plans to travel further north, past the Arctic Circle and into the Northwest Territories where ice roads, epic scenery and Inuvik await.
Exploring Inuvik by Ice Road, Snowmobile, and Dogsled
Ashley and Richard experience northern life in the remote town of Inuvik, including a day trip to the hamlet of Aklavik for a history lesson, a snowmobile ride, and a visit to an igloo with a familiar face.
FINALE: Driving to Tuktoyaktuk… in the Winter
Richard and Ashley take advantage of a weather window in hopes of a successful trip north to the Arctic Ocean bordering the hamlet of Tuktoyaktuk. Weather problems continue to plague the team, but a little bit of luck and some patience sees the couple’s successful return to a warmer climate.