Kokatat-sponsored Adventurers Head to the High Canadian Arctic

Kokatat Sponsors 2008 Kuujjua River/Beaufort Sea Expedition- On July 10th, Jim Baird along with his brother Ted Baird will head for the Arctic Archipelago to undertake the Canoe Beyond Kuujjua River/Beaufort Sea whitewater canoe expedition.

On July 10th, Jim Baird along with his brother Ted Baird will head for the Arctic Archipelago to undertake the Canoe Beyond Kuujjua River/Beaufort Sea whitewater canoe expedition. Jim and Ted will descend the advanced whitewater of the Northwest Territories Kuujjua River, followed by a long stretch of ocean travel to reach their destination. The entirety of the expedition will take place well above the Arctic Circle on Victoria Island and will take the two man team a total of five weeks to complete. “Given that the whole trip will occur far north of the tree line, fire is not an option. This fact when combined with frigid water temperatures, extreme weather conditions and treacherous whitewater makes hypothermia a serious concern. Our Kokatat dry suits will be essential for survival on this expedition”, says expedition leader Jim Baird. “Our experience from this journey will be shared with the paddling community and used to educate others about the fragility of the Arctic wilderness and the importance of preserving one of the last remaining wildernesses on this earth.

The Kuujjua River lies in an extremely remote and pristine wilderness area, 350 miles above the Arctic Circle and 250 miles above the tree line, on Victoria Island. “Because of the shallowness of the headwaters and the absence of a plane with tundra tires in the area, we will be flown to an unknown drop-off point in a small pontoon plane. This drop-off point may be as much as ten miles from the river adding a marathon portage and some tricky navigation to the expedition”, explains Jim.

Ted Baird began canoeing as a child at his family cottage like many Canadians. He holds a humanities degree from York University and currently works in sales and marketing for a Toronto based company called Unique Media. Ted has played competitive hockey since grade two and still has a passion for the sport. His outdoor pursuits have taken him to places like Northern Quebec, Labrador, and the North West Territories. Ted has done much of his white water training on rivers in Ontario. His level headedness and good judgment make him a real asset in demanding situations. This combined with physical strength, whitewater skills, and a great attitude makes Ted Baird an excellent recruit on any expedition.

Jim Baird, chief expedition planner and guide for Canoe Beyond, has been canoeing since he was a child and leading canoe trips since he was fourteen. His involvement in competitive sports has been constant since a young age. With an insatiable love for the natural world Jim Baird spends time in wild places all seasons of the year. A keen eye for Photography and confidence in public speaking give him the chance to share with people what he sees in the outdoors. Jim resides in Toronto where he works in sales and marketing for Unique Media Inc. He is a well traveled canoeist and has paddled and trekked extensively in Ontario. Jim Baird has also paddled Wilderness Rivers in Alaska, Quebec, Labrador, Northwest Territories and British Columbia as trip leader. His backpacking experience has taken him to Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta. Jim has also rafted in the Peruvian Amazon and winter camped on the Grand Canyon's north rim in Arizona.

For more information please visit the expedition website at www.canoebeyond.com, or contact Jim Baird canoeb@gmail.com


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