Walking is a way people have travelled on the land in the North since time immemorial. Over time, walking has evolved into many different forms of travels that move us forward on our Northern landscapes. Here is a list of on the land activities that could count towards your kilometres for Walk to Tuk:
Snowshoes are the classic invention of Northern travellers that are still used today to gather wood at camp, harvest on the trapline, or to break trail for skiers and dog sled teams. Well, another bonus of spending some time strapped to snowshoes on the land is that it also counts towards your Walk to Tuk team’s goal! If you’re getting a bit bored with a walk around the block, why not try another way of being active in the winter?
- Skiing or Skijoring
Another way to enjoy time on the land is by travelling with some long sticks on your feet, and possibly a dog tied to you. Skiing is one of the best ways to get around and stay active in the winter. Step into a pair of classic skis and hit the trails. There are limitless opportunities for ski trails on lakes, rivers, and snowmobile trails in our Northern communities. Additionally, the ski clubs in various communities groom fantastic networks of trails!
- Kick Sledding
Don’t have enough dogs for a dog team? Kick sledding might be the perfect winter activity for you and your pooch! It is basically a scooter made for the ice with some help from your best friend. Travelling on the land by kicksled will give you quick access to many local trails and is a fun winter workout that will count towards your Walk to Tuk kilometres!
- Collecting Firewood
Collecting wood requires time, muscle and energy, which is why spending time in the bush harvesting firewood is an excellent way to gain minutes for your Walk to Tuk team! If you are a community or school team, you could also collect wood for the elders in your community during these cold winter months and make a positive impact on your community.
- Harvesting Traditional Medicines
Although there is a limited amount of traditional medicines accessible in the winter, there are still some kicking around. Why not plan a traditional medicine walk with your community members or school? This is a great way to get elders and youth connected on the land while reaching your Walk to Tuk goal!
- Tracking Animals
A benefit of the winter season is that it is easier to see the foot tracks of the animals in our regions. If you’re spending time stalking animal tracks by dog sled, snowshoe or any other un-motorized form of transportation, you can absolutely count this towards your kilometres!
- Rebuilding Traditional Trails
Community or school teams can work together in building traditional trails that have been lost through fires or grown over from lack of use. The community can learn from elders about their traditional ancestral trails, such as traditional names and uses.
- Language Walks
This is a great way to get elders and youth to spend time together on the land. Elders can teach youth traditional names for the flora and fauna that they come across while going for a walk. This is a good opportunity for traditional knowledge exchange and language revitalization.
- Fat Biking
When the lakes and rivers freeze over, there are endless trails for winter fat bikers. Fat biking is a unique way to cycle through beautiful snowmobile trails that wouldn’t be accessible in the summer months. This is a winter activity that can help you Walk to Tuk team gain many kilometres or minutes!
Spending time on the land is an important part of life for many northerners. There are many other ways that you can be active on the land and get your team closer to the Walk to Tuk finish line, but don’t forget that if you plan to go out on the land, that it is important to dress appropriately. Check out this great infographic about winter clothing.