Kokatat goes ‘Kayaking through the Place of Spirits’ with the Tongait Expedition

July 7, 2023

ARCATA, CA (July 7, 2023)/OUTDOOR SPORTSWIRE/ – Late last week four sea kayakers set off on a 1,000 km kayaking journey to the ‘Place of Spirits’ in the Canadian Arctic. Over the next four weeks, Justine Curgenven, JF Marleau, Frank Wolf and Larry Chomyn will paddle around the Labrador Peninsula unsupported from Kangiqsualujjuaq, Quebec to Nain, Newfoundland. Along with documenting the expedition on film and text, the group will be piloting a polar bear sighting/encounter app for Polar Bears International

“This is an amazingly accomplished group of explorers and paddlers with over 50,000 km of wilderness travel between them,” said Lisa Kincaid, Kokatat’s Promotional Marketing Manager. “This expedition is wrought with danger between icebergs, polar bears, and massive tides, and so it’s no surprise so few people have attempted this route.”

Nigel and Kristen Foster were the last to complete the route 20 years ago. The trip starts in Ungava bay, home to the world’s largest tides and travels around to the exposed Labrador coast. They’ll then traverse through Torngat National Park which comes from the Inuktitut word Tongait, meaning “place of spirits”.

There are a handful of hunting cabins along the way, but for most of the journey the paddlers will spend nights in the rugged landscape where they will set up an alarm fence and take turns holding night watch to keep an eye out for polar bears and other predators.

Long-time adventurers Wolf and Curgenven have produced award-winning films and published many articles for national and international audiences. Marleau is one of the most experienced and highly qualified sea kayak professionals in Canada. Chomyn, rounds out the all-Canadian team, and has a long expedition resume and is passionate about paddling in dynamic water.

Kokatat has provided the team with Odyssey drysuits, Maximus Centurion and Neptune life vests, Tributary Hydration systems, and Slimstream waist tow systems for on-the-water, all-day comfort and safety.

Curgenven is frequently posting updates on the trip on her blog at https://www.cackletv.com/justines-blog/.

About Kokatat Inc.

Kokatat has been manufacturing paddling gear in Arcata, California for over 50 years. At a time when many technical apparel brands were moving manufacturing offshore, Kokatat continued to invest in infrastructure in the United States. Kokatat founder Steve O’Meara was committed to the development of the finest and driest paddling apparel in the world and recognized the need to control and continually evolve the development of our dry wear. In the early days, Kokatat worked closely with W.L. Gore & Associates, makers of GORE-TEX®, to refine the sewing and sealing techniques required for full immersion suits and tops. Today, our hands-on approach to manufacturing continues to set the standard in paddling apparel. Into the water with Kokatat! Learn more at kokatat.com.