Category Archives: Winter Camping

The Gear Polar Explorer Eric Larson uses to Survive Fat Biking in Antarctica

Check out the ‘Bicycling Magazine‘ article by Polar Explorer Eric Larson, who I met in our local MEC store a few months ago and chatted out fatbiking and possible future adventures …

Eric Larson & Tom Kolesnik at MEC Wpg Jan 2018
Eric Larson and Tom Kolesnik in Winnipeg MEC store – Jan 2018

Eric was in town to pick up some gear and then head out onto Lake Winnipeg to be Lead Instructor on his 2018 “Polar Travel Training Course” (which included our American fatbiking friend Bradley D. Paul, who took part in our “2017 Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Crossing & Campover” adventure).

Check out Eric’s video of that training course:


Back to the Bicycling Magazine article – check it out online HERE and below:

Fatbiking Antarctica - Eric Larson Bucycling Article - 1
Fatbiking Antarctica - Eric Larson Bucycling Article - 2
Fatbiking Antarctica - Eric Larson Bucycling Article - 3
Fatbiking Antarctica - Eric Larson Bucycling Article - 4
Fatbiking Antarctica - Eric Larson Bucycling Article - 6
Fatbiking Antarctica - Eric Larson Bucycling Article - 5
Fatbiking Antarctica - Eric Larson Bucycling Article - 8
Fatbiking Antarctica - Eric Larson Bucycling Article - 7

Fatbiking Antarctica - Eric Larson Bucycling Article - 10

Fatbiking Antarctica - Eric Larson Bucycling Article - 9

17 Wing Air Base Newspaper: “Fatbikers Ride to Remember SAR Tech MCpl Alfred Barr”

The 17 Wing Winnipeg Air Base “Voxair” Newspaper 21 Mar 18 Edition has an article called “Fatbikers Ride to Remember SAR Tech MCpl Alfred Barr” based on the reporter Martin Zeilig interviewing me and using a few of my pictures.Voxair 21 Mar 18 - Fatbikers Ride to Remember SAR Tech Sgt Alfred Barr - 1Among the quotes he used were references to our excellent Leaders Team (including our British friend Patrick Stevens from Sweden) and key supporters Robert Paige of Xtreme Sports Medics and Dave MacDonald of ICSOS.

He did not quote my mentioning of how important was Kevin Champagne‘s snowmobile and sled support for transporting key supplies out to our camp and back!   He also mentioned our American friend Thomas Woods who joined us, but obviously misplaced your specifics Thomas).

The Voxair also included a colour picture with a double line of fatbikers riding across the lake.
Voxair 21 Mar 18 - Fatbikers Ride to Remember SAR Tech Sgt Alfred Barr - 2
They mistakenly mention in the caption that “Major Tom Kolesnik ‘leads’ the fatbikers …”, when in fact at the lead of the line of riders is Kurt Lehmann and Rick Shone.


Here’s the direct link to the Voxair article in Pdf format:
http://www.thevoxair.ca/…/Web%20Voxair%20Issue%2006%202018.…

CBC ‘le tele journal’ TV Report: “Cycling on a Frozen Lake”

Here’s a link to our CBC Radio-Canada ‘le tele journal’ TV story about our Lake Winnipeg Fatbike adventure (in French and some interviews in English including Keith Holm, Jeff Hobden, Kathryn Adams, Patrick Stevens and me):

Check it out HERE or click the image below:

CBC Video - 5 Mar 18 - Cycling on a Frozen Lake

Cheers, Fat Tom K

That’s a wrap: Camp Barr is closed and all Fatbikers are safely home!

After a truly EPIC day and evening of Fatbiking adventure and Memorial tribute to Alfred on Saturday, our main group of 20+ hardy fatbikers and Xtreme Sports Medics still on the lake, enjoyed a cozy -15C campover; all snug in our 4-Season dome tents and our double insulated tent complete with Field Kitchen and Medic’s station!

40670590182_3a4b9cd8de_o
Blake Anderson captured the scene as we started to get ready to slide into our sleeping bags.
IMG_6821
Okay, some of us stayed up later in our warm cozy double tent and shared stories of adventure!
IMG_6661
Did I mention last night that even cold drinks hit the spot out in the middle of the lake at -15C! 🙂
28424789_10155618194389118_5748136809029453011_o
Robert Helms snapped this view as we were awakening after a windy night, to see the overcast skies and the expected snow squalls approaching.  Time to have breakie and pack up.
40713210311_1c84b402d9_o
David and Keith were up and ready to roll – especially when I delivered the news that some snow squalls were moving into the Lake Winnipeg area.
IMG_6689
Fortunately, while we packed up – our intrepid trio of Jonathan (Asst Guide turned ‘Asst Chef’), Kas (Medic turned Camp ‘Sgt-Major’) and Chris (CASARA Coord turned Camp ‘Field Major – Quarter Master’) were cooking up hashbrowns, sausage and bacon! Saweet! 🙂
IMG_6695
Did I mention BACON?!  It had been a while since I had seen Gregory ‘cry’ during breakfast! 😉
IMG_6688
Here’s some of our hardy group of fatbikers enjoying warm breakie in our cozy main tent.
IMG_6691
Talk about your Team effort … Steven and Gregory help Keith with his breakie! 😉
IMG_6698
Hauling the Camp Barr gear and extras was made possible by good folks like Robert Paige of Xtreme Sports Medics – thanks Rob, you’re the Best! 🙂
IMG_6749
Here’s Kevin Champagne and Kas ready to take in a load of gear.  HUGE KUDOS to Kevin for all his support before and during our Lake Winnipeg adventure!  He came back out Sunday morning to help us haul in our camp gear quickly! You’re awesome Kevin! 🙂
40003261024_f710c2cbce_o
Our ‘Intrepid’ Asst Guide Patrick Stevens from England (via Sweden) agreed to let me record his thoughts about our adventure and I must say, with the backdrop looking rather ‘Polar’, it was not hard to imagine Patrick as a Great British Explorer of old! 🙂

 

26842029778_34328a7b9b_o
Taking down the RCAF flag that we flew in Honour of Alfred was not easy for me … thank you Chris Black for helping me!
38903475780_3809c4b8bd_o
Alfred … you are not forgotten … our friend and Rescue Brother!
38903469140_5d11d259c3_o
Our good American friend Thomas Woods had his own emotional task to complete and once again Chris stepped up to help ensure it was done with respect and due ceremony!
IMG_9548
Here’s Asst Guide Keith Holm leading the riders back into Grand Marais – followed by Steven Sloat and Asst Guide Jonathan Letkemann.
img_9549.png
Blake Anderson and Marty Roy both pulled pulks (sleds) full of extra gear.  Blake even had ice fishing gear complete with auger – keener! 😉
IMG_6751
This little pop-up shelter was very important this weekend – the outhouse!  Look closely inside the door … I had one last nasty job left before pack up!  Thank goodness for air fresheners!
IMG_6756
All packed and cleaned up!  Just a bonfire ring left at Camp Barr 2018 … be back next year!
28685859_10215904961646943_1394376272406118400_o
Fatbikers approaching Grand Marais at the end of an epic three day adventure!
IMG_6822
Safely off the lake before the snow and ice pellets arrived a few hours later (yes our one hour drive to Winnipeg went well)!  A hot meal at the Grand Marais Sand Bar Inn was a great way to wrap up the weekend with renewed friendship gained as adventurers! 🙂

So much more to be said, more pictures and videos to share and media reports pending (CBC was waiting for us when we rode into Grand Marais).

Alfred – you have not been forgotten and we have continued on what we had discussed about getting fellow Manitoban fatbikers out on more adventures and passing on skills to allow people to not just Survive, but also Thrive!  RESCUE!

Alfred Barr RIP Collage

Cheers, Fat Tom K

 

 

 

EPIC times on Lake Winnipeg: Camp Barr to Gimli and Back

WOW!!!  Yesterday afternoon and evening was an EPIC adventure as our main group of Lake Winnipeg Fatbikers rode from Camp Barr to Gimli (for supper at Kris Fish & Chips – thanks Jeff & Candy Badger for the free drinks) and then back out to camp starting at dusk and finishing in the dark!

Map - 2018 'Alfred Barr' Lake Wpg Crossing & Campover 2

It was a real trek and had a few obstacles enroute (pressure ridge ice cracks); but well worth the challenge and it was safely completed, thanks to good ride guides (thanks Keith, Jonathan and Patrick) and support from Robert Paige and his Xtreme Sports Medics!  Here’s a few pics to tell the story …

Saturday ride to Gimli & Back 2
Here’s Assistant Guide Keith leading our main group out from Camp Barr along with Robert Paige escorting with his snowmobile and trailer (with ladders for any crack crossings).
Saturday ride to Gimli & Back 3
Can you spot our Assistant Guide Patrick?  The Swedish flag is a bit of a give away! 🙂
Saturday ride to Gimli & Back 4
Here’s Thomas (Honourary Manitoban from Minnesota, USA) – glad you could join us bud! 🙂
Saturday ride to Gimli & Back 6
A beautiful vista!
Saturday ride to Gimli & Back 7
We arrived at the large pressure ridge crack line, which was about 4 Kms out from the Gimli Harbour.  Kevin Champagne and I had recce’s the route the week before and our track lead to a safe crossing spot.
28783672_10156145259951197_4820768179681754324_n
Finding a good crossing spot in advance of the ride was essential to our adventure.
28516075_10155618230329118_8502476179116855109_o
Yup, that’s me on the other side of the pressure ridge … “come on over guys – It’s all good”! 😉
Saturday ride to Gimli & Back 8
G-Mac says “it’s not what it was cracked up to be after all”! 😉
Saturday ride to Gimli & Back 9
One more small pressure ridge near the Gimli Harbour approach.  Great place for G-Mac to snap some close-ups …
26841868678_317bea66c5_o
A bit early on the snap here of Patrick near the bump … can anyone get some air? …
40670523642_2ef9fb021e_o
YESSSSS!  Well done Assistant Guide Jonathan! 🙂
Saturday ride to Gimli & Back 11
Passing the Lake Winnipeg Research boat as we enter Gimli Harbour.
Saturday ride to Gimli & Back 12
A pleasant view after a solid ride … the harbour and the town of Gimli! 🙂
IMG_6642
Kris’ Fish & Chips – our favourite Gimli food stop on all our lake crossings and thanks to hosts Jeff & Candy Badger (owners and Polar Bear Crossing Event organizers) we are always welcomed with a little extra (a free drink went down nicely)! 🙂
IMG_6640
Good food, good company and very good times! 🙂
Saturday ride to Gimli & Back 13
We headed back out onto the lake at dusk.
40003062304_5436cde0d1_o
The light was fading and we had a solid ride back ahead of us.
40713214581_b1b5edd353_o
Time to hydrate, turn on the lights, prepare for the ride ahead and contact Robert to arrange for him to meet us via snowmobile from Camp Barr at the main pressure ridge crossing.
IMG_6646 copy
There’s Robert (in yellow with flashlight on the other side) assisting from the other side; while Keith monitors each rider from this side.  Teamwork – nice! 🙂
28071341_10155618237159118_3819550711255465126_o
Just a simple crossing … when you plan it and do it right!  Thanks Kevin & Robert! 🙂
28782682_769769146551843_5949557998882143739_n
Speaking of Teamwork … while we were riding to Gimli & Back, Extreme Sports Medic Kas ‘Camp Barr Sgt-Major’ was prepping the rescue sled and helping prepare the camp for our arrival back!
28471573_769769049885186_2721066134609826128_n
Kas and the crew back at Camp Barr got hot soup and drinks ready and then lit the bonfire! 🙂
28576414_769769019885189_7217319258821722905_n
The signal flares they launched looked really close to us as we biked back to Camp Barr, but it was a long night ride yet ahead!
28619292_10155618236329118_5099768357865855244_o
Camp Barr was a welcome sight to us as we rode it to enjoy the comforts of our little ‘Tent City’!
29025590_10216017609576693_7255329962113105920_n
Nothing like a bonfire to warm bodies after a chilly ride and raise the spirits too! 🙂
IMG_6666
Warm drinks and good company make for fun! 🙂
IMG_6662
Even cool ones hit the spot … especially when Team Leaders are toasting an EPIC adventure! 🙂

That’s all for now.

Cheers, Fat Tom K

 

 

Amazing Day of Fatbike Adventure and Memorial Celebration on Lake Winnipeg!

WOW!!!  This was a wonderful day in so many ways for our “2018 ‘Alfred Barr’ Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Crossing & Campover”!  We had another 20+ fatbikers join our already 16 active fatbikers and Leaders Team today as we rode out from Grand Marais – with additional escorts from RCAF 435 Squadron (three SAR Technicians on snowmobiles – with a couple dogs) and made our ways to ‘Camp Barr’ on the middle of the lake.  There we held a Memorial Service to honour or lost friend, fellow MB Fatbiker and RCAF SAR Technician MCpl Alfred Barr!

So much to say, but for now here are a few pictures and some drone aerial views of the adventure today (more on the crossing to Gimli and back during the night later):

- Gregory's Sunrise with frosty bikes Pic
Gregory ‘G-Mac’ McNeill’s beautiful picture of the sunrise this morning as our Leaders Team got ready to ride back into Grand Marais to meet the 20+ fatbikers meeting us for breakfast and to join the adventure!
25841883247_09704a83a1_o
Time to get ready to roll …
25841865657_48630a13fb_o (1)
G-Mac’s picture of us riding in with me escorting on one of Dave MacDonald’s snowmobiles – thanks Dave!
25841861047_593f00b1e0_o
Back at Grand Marais, Janice was not to happy that she couldn’t stay for the rest of the adventure, but I assured her we would do it all again next year – hugs all around! 🙂
26841916488_1300f2153e_o
20+ riders joined in for today ride out to Camp Barr and half of them stayed for the rest of the adventure beyond to Gimli and back to camp.
26841919948_32e049e681_o (1)
Yes, that is my snowmobile ride for the morning … let it be known that Fat Tom K made full use of Dave’s sled to guide and position myself to fly my drone to capture the story!
28782848_10215913721705939_1235903811818618880_o
So out onto Lake Winnipeg we went and our fatbiking friend from the USA, Thomas Woods captured the start with this nice view.
IMG_6565
Here’s my view of the fatbike ‘gang’ heading out on the lake.
Done - side view of bikers in line riding out to camp cropped
A drone view of the Saturday group heading out on the open lake.
Fatbikers riding out onto Lake Wpg 3 Mar 18 cropped
Here they are close up … Kurt and Rick leading with Artur and Michelle right behind.
Done - top view of bikers in line riding out to camp
The drone view of the group taking a break and checking out a ‘low snow’ area.
28619350_10155618216004118_7996667836922649658_o
Here’s G-Mac (on the other side of the camera lens for a change) riding with Steffi.
28424321_10155618206699118_1669944269980776631_o
We stopped to check out lots of ice chunks.
28575663_10155109368516244_883264345976816330_n
Here Kim seems to be setting Dave up for launch! 😉
IMG_6618
Here’s our three supporting RCAF SAR Techs (on their dogs) with Steffi who fatbiked out with us for the Memorial Ceremony, our group lunch and then back into Grand Marais – awesome!
28870489_10215904960326910_8770468426981310464_o
Sunny skies and light winds made chat time rather pleasant today! 🙂
40670547512_d97673ab54_o
Group break with our SAR Tech snowmobile escorts.
28575989_769768866551871_1895270632463191540_n
As we approached Camp Bar, our welcoming party (Medic Kas holding a signal smoke) were waiting with hot food, signals and Scottish Highlands music playing (Alfred’s fav)!
28514467_1616556525124567_3273396048834108122_o
Dave Bell captured this view as he rode up to Camp Barr.
Drone - Low View 1
Drone view of all the fatbikers and escorts arriving at Camp Barr!
Drone - Keith Holm on Fat Uni-Cycle copy
Can you spot Keith Holm (one of our Assistant Guides) riding on his fatbike unicycle (hint – the shadow shows!).  Yes, those are empty KFC buckets in the fire pit (they burn great)! 🙂
Drone - High Wide View
Here’s the full scene from high above.  Camp Barr site was chosen for the good snow pack area, the nice protruding ice chunks nearby (they just look cool) and a slight bowl indent.
Map - 2018 'Alfred Barr' Lake Wpg Crossing & Campover 2
We had a couple tents and a pop-up fishing shelter in reserve for Saturday night, but due to some folks camping over on different nights, they were not needed this year.
20180303-DZ6C9879
We paused to remember Alfred and how he had impacted our lives and been a positive part of our Manitoba Fatbike Community!
20180303-DZ6C9876
Alfred – you have not been forgotten!  RESCUE
- Group Picture Gregory's - 2018 'Alfred Barr' Lake Wpg FB Crossing & Campover
Here’s G-Mac’s 2018 ‘Alfred Barr’ Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Adventure Memorial Group Photo.
IMG_3061
It was an important time to remember and share memories.  Here I am chatting with my friend and former RCAF SAR Tech Dave MacDonald.  He and I served together and carried out rescue missions together when I flew C-130 Hercules aircraft at 435 Transport & Rescue Squadron and he took the big risks parachuting out of them and carry direct medical and rescue activities.
40713234551_6dfd765f19_o
For some it was a time to reconnect and share the loss felt more deeply!
40713235291_a8cdae1a39_o
We all took our turn signing Alfred Barr’s Royal Canadian Air Force Flag.
28870120_571719769859403_3583989531037010913_n
Then we enjoyed good food together …
20180303-DZ6C9925
… and savoured the moment! 🙂
28424510_10155618205769118_8666965815794218773_o
We enjoyed our time together at Camp Barr and then the ‘day trippers’ rode back into Grand Marais with SAR Tech snowmobile escort and our main group prepared to ride to Gimli in search of Kris Fish & Chips for supper and a ride back out to the camp for the night!

That’s all for now – more to follow …

Cheers, Fat Tom K

 

 

Good Morning from ‘Camp Barr’ at the Middle of Lake Winnipeg!

Good morning from the middle of Lake Winnipeg and a cozy ‘Camp Barr’ Leader’s Team and hardy fatbikers who slept over with us last night!  It was a clear and crisp -20C over night, but we were all snug in our 4-Season tents and we awoke to a beautiful sunrise.

Here’s a few pictures taken by a few of us:

Sat AM 3 Mar 2018 - Lake Wpg FB Camp - 1
Steven Sloat snapped this one showing all the ‘hoar’ frost built up overnight (cold and moist air)!
Sat AM 3 Mar 2018 - Lake Wpg FB Camp - 2
Patrick Stevens from Sweden snapped this one jus before sunrise of our frosty bikes.  That’s his borrowed bike (Lori’s Mukluk) with the green helmet (notice the Swedish flag).
Sat AM 3 Mar 2018 - Lake Wpg FB Camp - 4
Gregory ‘G-Mac’ McNeill (our Official Lake Winnipeg Adventure Photographer) took this amazing portrait of Leela the morning after her 50th Birthday adventure and party! 🙂
Sat AM 3 Mar 2018 - Lake Wpg FB Camp - 5
G-Mac also took this great picture of Steven Sloat adjusting his gear at sunrise!
Sat AM 3 Mar 2018 - Lake Wpg FB Camp - 3
Blake Anderson captured this excellent sunrise view of Camp Barr – complete with the Cdn Flag!
Sat AM 3 Mar 2018 - Lake Wpg FB Camp - 7
Janice says goodbye to Camp Barr this morning.  She was able to join us later in the evening last night before dark (escorted out by Dave MacDonald and me).  She has to head back into town after an early breakfast at the Sand Bar Inn, where we will be meeting those (20+) riders joining our adventure this morning!

That’s all for now.  Heading back into Grand Marais.

Cheers, Fat Tom K

 

 

Leader’s Report: Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Campsite is ready!

Today’s trip out from Grand Marais to our Lake Winnipeg Fatbike campsite went really well!  We overcame a few challenges (quad and sled issues), had a fun bike and snowmobile ride out to the pre-chosen site and our little ‘Tent City’ on the lake is all set up, well provisioned (yes, there will be KFC leftovers for those of you coming out to join us tomorrow) and cozy!

So much to say, but I will let the pictures speak for now …

Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 1
Leaders Team pre-ride lunch at the Sand Bar Inn in Grand Marais.  Other riders joining our Team included David, Kathy, Steven and Leela (Birthday Gal!) and two Robert Paige’s Xtreme Sports Medics (Kas and Natasha).  We even had Darcie drop by to wish us well. 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 2
Lots of well-lit overnight parking available beside the Sand Bar Motor Inn.
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 3
Robert Paige’s offer of free support by his Xtreme Sport Medics Team came complete with multiple vehicles, transport options and rescue-evacuation capabilities!
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 3b
Xtreme Sports Medics Rock!  Thanks Robert! 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 4
Everything loaded and ready to roll! 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 5
Leading the way and hauling gear was Kevin Champagne – our key supporter in 2017 and again this year!  Much thanks Kevin! 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 6
Patrick Steven’s, one of our Assistant Guides, came all the way over from Sweden to join in the adventure and fun! 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 7
There Robert Paige hauling camp and rescue gear!
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 8
Kathy had no doubts as to whether she was ready for the challenge! 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 9
STOP sign?  TRAIL CLOSED?  Not to worry, the SnoMan Snowmobile Trail across the lake was closed, but our route went went a different route – groomed ourselves.
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 10
Now that’s more like it … off to the middle of the lake! 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 11
Here’s Chris Black (our CASARA Coordinator & Camp ‘QuarterMaster’) and me heading out.
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 12
You are all going to want to get your picture taken by these ice chunks we pass by enroute to camp.  I only have this iPhone picture of myself, but I am sure Gregory will capture better ones!
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 13
Setting up our campsite – just as we practiced on the frozen Red River a few weeks ago.
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 14
It was a real team effort! 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 15
Voila!  Camp Barr is all set up with a few flags flying (RCAF flag to be signed by all and Canadian of course) already.  Tomorrow we will be adding a UK ‘Union Jack’ for Steven and an American for Thomas! 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 16
Our Xtreme Sport Medics (Natasha, Kas and Robert) Safety Team are happy to join us! 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 17
Dave MacDonald (President of ICSOS – Survival Instructor and former RCAF 435 Squadron mate of mine) and Chris Black discussing plans for tomorrow.  What a Leaders Team we have!
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 18
Dave MacDonald’s snowmobiles and sled came in very handy today – thanks bud!
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 19
Having time to settle in before sunset was a bonus!
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 20
A priceless view from the middle of Lake Winnipeg!
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 21
Nothing better than a rip roaring bonfire at any campsite!
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 22
Mind you our cozy main double-tent (insulated, lit and hot drinks on) was a nice refuge! 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 23
Did I mention the Birthday Gal?  Leela found a great way to celebrate 50 years of adventure! 🙂
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 24
Yes, there will be some cold KFC leftovers for tomorrow!
Friday Leaders Ride Out & Campover 25
Thanks Gregory ‘G-Mac’ McNeill for capturing this beautiful scene as we tucked into our cozy sleeping bags for the night!

Thats all for tonight!

See you tomorrow at the Sand Bar Inn at 9:00 AM for breakfast and then our large group ride out to camp (should be 35+ of us)!

Cheers, Fat Tom K

 

 

 

 

Fat Video Time: Campsite Trial Setup for the 2018 ‘Alfred Barr’ Lake Wpg Fatbike Crossing & Campover

It was time to trial our planned Camp Site setup for the “2018 ‘Alfred Barr’ Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Crossing & Campover” adventure weekend planned for 2-4 March 2018.

Tenting Base Camp Layout - Lake Wpg Fatbike Campover 2018

At the centre is a Double Combo large tent that will be heated for our main communal retreat, plus five 6-Person tents, two large ice fishing pop up shelters for cooking & eating, plus a small shelter for our Toilet Tent.  Additional 2-6 Person tents will be added as required.

Trial Campsite Setup Video Thumbnail

This trial was a good way for our Leaders Team to check out the set up procedures and make any corrections (such as more guy ropes).  We all agreed that the tents and shelters work great and are quite easy to set up and secure with the right stakes and ice screws.

Tent City Camp Site

Check out my video below:

Cheers, Fat Tom K

Setting up at ‘Tent City’ Campsite on the Red River: Lake Winnipeg Team Leaders Prepare

Great fun today setting up our little ‘Tent City’ Campsite on the Red River as a shake out for our “2018 ‘Alfred Barr’ Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Crossing & Campover”, which will be set up in the middle of the lake on 2-4 March 2018.

Thanks Robert La Roque and Ken Buhler for early help with the big combo tent …Tent City Camp Site on Red River 10

Later some of our Leaders Team (Gregory ‘GMac” McNeill, Chris Black, and Jonathan Letkemann), plus several Xtreme Sports Medics (Kas Savage and Natasha Arnfinson) joined me in setting the rest of the campsite up …

Tent City Camp Site on Red River 16

Tent City Camp Site on Red River 14

Tent City Camp Site on Red River 11

Tent City Camp Site on Red River 13

Tent City Camp Site on Red River 12

Tent City Camp Site on Red River 1

Tent City Camp Site on Red River 3

Tent City Camp Site on Red River 20

Waking up the next morning to this sight out the back window was a real treat!
Tent City Camp Site on Red River 21
Good times ahead!

Cheers, Fat Tom K

Fat Video Time: Campover at Fat Tom K’s Red River Fatbike Crossing

FAT VIDEO TIME: I decided that last night was a perfect night (-31C/-42 windchill) for a campover on the river beside my “2018 Fat Tom K Red River Fatbike Crossing” here in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada – Eh!

IMG_5978

Yes – it was crazy cold, but I was cumfy in my North Face sleeping bag on a good combo sleeping pad and snug in my Big Agnes 4-Season tent! 

IMG_5988

Here’s a bird’s eye view (aheam – my new DJI Mavic Pro Drone’s 4K camera) of my crossing and campover site!

Video Thumbnail 1-2

Check out my video below:

 

For those not aware, this campover was partially as a test for the upcoming “2018 ‘Alfred Barr’ Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Crossing & Campover” Adventure Weekend planned for 2-4 March 2018 …

Poster 3 - 2018 ‘ALFRED BARR_ LAKE WINNIPEG FATBIKE CROSSING & CAMPOVER - WIDE

Here’s the plan for our campsite out on the middle of Lake Winnipeg (my Big Agnes 6 Person tent is located on the left and is planned for five persons on the lake):
Tenting Base Camp Layout - Lake Wpg Fatbike Campover 2018

Editor’s Post Update (7 Feb 18):
Thanks Gregory ‘G-Mac’ McNeill for this picture taken down by my tent on the Red River after six of our nine leaders of the 2018 ‘Alfred Barr’ Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Crossing & Campover” adventure had a great Leaders Team Planning Meetings …
2018 Lake Wpg FB Adventure Leader Team on Red River by Tent
L-R: G-Mac, Tom K, Chris Black, Keith Holm, Jon Letkemann and Keith Champagne

Cheers, Fat Tom K

 

“2018 ‘Alfred Barr’ Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Crossing & Campover”: Details for 2-4 March 2018

Details are coming together for the:
“2018 Alfred Barr’ Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Crossing & Campover” Adventure – now planned for Fri-Sun 2-4 March 2018!

Poster 3 - 2018 ‘ALFRED BARR_ LAKE WINNIPEG FATBIKE CROSSING & CAMPOVER - WIDE

We are dedicating this Memorial event in Honour of our much loved Fatbiking and adventure friend Alfred, who died on 8 March 2017 during an Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) Search and Rescue (SAR) Technician training jump from a 435 Squadron C-130 Hercules – just days after he had taken part in our 2017 version of the same Lake Wpg crossing and campover. I announced this Event Memorial dedication when I spoke at Alfred’s Memorial Service at 17 Wing Winnipeg Air Base, received his families’ appreciation and endorsement. Now we follow through … Alfred you will not be forgotten!

Screen Shot 2017-03-16 at 10.29.21 PM

Alfred – we are going to complete the task you had set out for yourself and told us about on the lake last year … Alfred Barr: “I am so lucky to be a SAR Tech and so very well trained during my SAR Tech Course 49 this past year. I hope to pass on a lot of my newly honed skills, especially Arctic survival and extended adventure travel to my Fatbiking friends.” Don’t worry Alfred … your friends will ‘take up the torch’ and try to live up to the SAR Tech Motto that you died training to uphold: “That Others May Live” Rescue!

While we will be following a similar inexpensive/non-profit/cooperative group adventure plan as last year; with limited sponsorships (last year MEC & Wilderness Supply were very supportive), we will also be engaging in cooperative training and adventure with SAR Techs from 435 Sqn and others who trained with Alfred on SAR Tech Course 49. They will be taking part on the ground (ahem, snow) and possibly from the air (if weather and coordination allows for parachute training).

We will provide 1, 2 and 3 day participation options:

Fri 2 March: Take part in Fatbiking, winter camping skills, backcountry medical/evacuation SAR practice exercises likely on Lake Winnipeg with fatbikers and motorized escort quads/snowmobiles heading out to the center of the lake to set up a little ‘tent city’ and campover with the Team Leaders.

33060574392_96c97a5cba_k

Map - 2018 'Alfred Barr' Lake Wpg Crossing & Campover

Tenting Base Camp Layout - Lake Wpg Fatbike Campover 2018

Sat Morning 3 March: Fatbikers and escort vehicles bike/drive back from the lake campsite in the early morning to the Sand Bar Inn in Grand Marais for breakfast and to meet up with other FatBikers joining the group who drive out from ‘town’ that morning.

26513371_10215417531855125_712111296_o

Sat 3 March: After breakfast, the combined group will ride across Lake Winnipeg following a marked/groomed route with snowmobile/quad support for pressure ridge crack crossings as req’d. Stop at mid-lake to add to the campsite with any additional tents and gear, possible 435 Sqn SAR aircraft participation, then continue across to Gimli for lunch and then back to the camp for supper, bonfire and sleepover in our little tent city.

32401875243_7f8a594569_k

Sun 4 March: After a breakfast on the lake, we will ride back to the Sand Bar Inn at Grand Marais for lunch and adventure wrap up.

32401695063_a482c663ea_k

I am also pleased to announce that our Leaders Team is now complete and these amazing volunteers will ensure that our adventure is well organized, safe and fun:

Gregory McNeill - Picture Collage for 2018 Lake Wpg FB Crossing & Campover copy

Keith Holm - Picture Collage for 2018 Lake Wpg FB Crossing & Campover copy

Jonathan Letkemann - Picture Collage for 2018 Lake Wpg FB Crossing & Campover copy

Patrick Stevens - Picture Colage for 2018 Lake Wpg FB Crossing & Campover copy

Kevin Champagne - Picture Collage for 2018 Lake Wpg FB Crossing & Campover copy

Robert Paige Xtreme Sports Medics - Picture Collage for 2018 Lake Wpg FB Crossing & Campover copy

Dave MacDonald - Picture Collage for 2018 Lake Wpg FB Crossing & Campover copy

Chris Black - Picture Collage for 2018 Lake Wpg FB Crossing & Campover copy

Sgt Steve Delage - Picture Collage for 2018 Lake Wpg FB Crossing & Campover copy
Tom Kolesnik - Picture Collage for 2018 Lake Wpg FB Crossing & Campover copyTom Kolesnik
2018 ‘Alfred Bar’ Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Crossing & Campover
Adventure Weekend Coordinator
tomkolesnik@gmail.com
Cell: (204) 612-9266

Major Tom Kolesnik, RCAF, 17 Wing LLO
Former 435 Sqn C-130 SAR Pilot

More details to follow after upcoming planning mtgs.

G-Mac’s Flickr Account: 2017 Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Crossing & Campover

32401875243_b02ebb27bd_o

This beautiful picture of our “Fattie – Not So Frozen – Dozen” enjoying some bonfire time at our campsite on Lake Winnipeg last weekend is courtesy of our very own fatbiker friend and photographer extraordinaire Gregory ‘G-Mac’ McNeill.

The rest of Gregory’s excellent pictures from our “2017 Lake Winnipeg Fatbike Crossing and Campover” adventure are on his flickr account here:
https://www.flickr.com/…/116655655…/albums/72157680968774465

- G-Mac's Flickr 2017 Lake Wpg FB C&C

Thanks again G-Mac for capturing our adventure so well!

Cheers, Fat Tom K