People photography in northern Manitoba, Canada

Northern Manitoba, in central Canada, is renowned for the enchanting beauty of its subarctic wilderness. It’s an outstanding location to photograph boreal forest and tundra landscapes, and wildlife during the caribou migration. This post, though, is about people photography in northern Manitoba, because I also enjoyed photographing the people working at Gangler’s North Seal Wilderness Adventures.

A sunrise over Egenolf Lake in Manitoba.

A sunrise over Egenolf Lake in Manitoba.

The lodge was established in the 1990s. Over the intervening years, the remote property has won renown among anglers, who visit to fish in lakes dotting the five million-acre concession operated by Ken Gangler and his team of employees.

Ken Gangler at his lodge in Manitoba, Canada.

Ken Gangler at his lodge in Manitoba, Canada.

Fly in fly out fishing

Gangler’s Fly In Fly Out fishing is rated among the best in the world. Pilots such as Colin operate float planes to transport anglers to and from the lakes surrounding the lodge and its outposts. To do that, Colin flies a de Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver.

Colin Knight, the pilot of a de Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver, flying in Manitoba, Canada.

Colin, the pilot of a de Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver, flying in Manitoba, Canada.

Every day, before the place takes off, a dockhand prepares the aircraft. Packing equipment and getting the fuel line ready.

A dockhand on the jetty at Lake Egenolf.

A dockhand on the jetty at Lake Egenolf.

First Nations fishing guides

Guides with intimate knowledge of the region help anglers locate fish and cook the shore lunches prepared with non-trophy catches.

Bernard cooks a lakeside shore lunch.

Bernard cooks a lakeside shore lunch.

I had the pleasure of spending time in a boat with Alex. Outside of the summer season, Alex lives in a community a short flight from the lodge.

Fishing guide Alex while out angling on Lake Egenolf.

Fishing guide Alex while out angling on Lake Egenolf.

Bernard, another of the guides with whom I fished, has been trapping in the region around Egenolf Lake since 1964. He recalled how he bought a transistor radio to listen to the first Liston-Ali fight during his first winter in the area.

Fishing guides Bernard and Singadore on the only rainy day of the trip.

Fishing guides Bernard and Singadore on the only rainy day of the trip.

Singadore is nicknamed Snoop Dogg. He joined a group of us on an excursion to Manitoba’s border with Nunuvut, at 60°N.

Singadore, a fishing guide, on the jetty on Lake Egenolf.

Singadore, a fishing guide, on the jetty on Lake Egenolf.

Wilderness adventures in Canada’s subarctic

Over the coming seasons Ken is keen to move his business towards the outdoor adventure sector. Activities offered at the lodge include fat biking on eskers (ridges of sand deposited during the last ice age), kayaking and canoeing.

John Tronrud, who has worked at Gangler's North Seal River Lodge for 15 summers.

John has worked at Gangler’s North Seal River Lodge for 15 summers.

John drove me on one of the eskers in an all-terrain vehicle. We saw moose and wolf tracks in the sandy earth, as well as berry-rich bear scats while seeking out locations to view and photograph the sunset.

John looking out at the countryside of northern Manitoba.

John looking out at the countryside of northern Manitoba.

Dr Brian Kotak is the Managing Director of the Manitoba Wildlife Federation and is developing a programme of hikes, in conjunction with John, that will enable visitors to the lodge to gain an overview of the region’s flora and fauna.

Dr Brian Kotak leading a walk on an esker in northern Manitoba.

Dr Brian Kotak leading a walk on an esker in northern Manitoba.

The hikes are also a good opportunity to view archaeological sites, many of which date from the era, approximately 1,000 to 2,500 years ago, known as the Taltheili Shale Tradition. We saw tent rings on eskers and discovered arrow- and spearheads.

John Tronrud and Dr Brian Kotak at a sign for Gangler's North Seal River Lodge .

John and Brian by a sign for Gangler’s North Seal River Lodge.

People photography in northern Manitoba

After a day of outdoor activities, it was good to come back to the lodge for snacks and, if we wanted it, a cold, refreshing beer.

A blonde woman smiles for the camera.

A smile for the camera.

The team of servers working at the lodge were personable and talked passionately about their summer in the remoteness of northern Manitoba.

Jordan, Trinity and Driane seated in adirondack chairs outside of the lodge.

Jordan, Trinity and Driane seated in adirondack chairs outside of the lodge.

Ben, the chef at Gangler’s North Seal River Lodge, is a keen guitarist when he’s not busy in the kitchen. That was something I seized upon for a photo opportunity.

Ben, the chef at Gangler's North Seal River Lodge, holding an electric guitar.

Ben, the chef at Gangler’s North Seal River Lodge, holding an electric guitar.

The Northern Lights in Manitoba

It was worth staying awake after dinner to socialise in chairs ranged around the firepit then watch the Northern Lights flickering in the sky of northern Manitoba.

The Northern Lights and stars in the night sky of Northern Manitoba.

The Northern Lights and stars in the night sky of Northern Manitoba.

The lights tend to be visible most nights from the beginning of August, explained Ken as we sat by the campfire.

Ken Gangler illuminated by the campfire by the lodge.

Ken illuminated by the campfire at the lodge.

People, they say, make a place and the people shown and mentioned in this post all helped make my visit to northern Manitoba and Gangler’s North Seal Wilderness Adventures memorable.

A group by an erratic, a large stone deposited when glaciers melted at the end of the last ice age.

A group of visitors to Gangler’s North Seal Wilderness Adventures. The stand by an erratic, a large stone deposited when glaciers melted at the end of the last ice age.

Further information

See the Gangler’s North Seal Wilderness Adventures website for information about the lodge and activities offered there.

Find out more about the province see the Travel Manitoba and Destination Canada websites.

Time to go fishing?

Time to go fishing?

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2 Comments

  1. Dave Peters 17th October 2018 at 6:28 pm #

    Wow! Beautiful. Loved reading this and looking at your photos.

    • Stuart Forster 25th October 2018 at 2:48 pm #

      Thank you. Manitoba has been named as one of the places to visit on the Lonely Planet list for 2019.

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