I’m one of those guys who absolutely hates shopping, never have liked it and probably never will. However the time we spent in the Northern Store in Paulatuk was probably the most enjoyable shopping experience of my life.

We just finished our first “shore meal” which was part of the resupply we did at Paulatuk. We decided to budget food supplies for 30 days to get us to Cambridge Bay and then add in an additional 10 days of “shore food” which would be eaten in the event that we are forced to shelter on land along the way. So in total we have 40 days of food supply on board which should hopefully see us through to Cambridge Bay which is about 750km away. (We sent additional food ahead to Cambridge Bay before we left Inuvik)

The “shore food” that we added consisted of lunch’s and dinners (we have enough breakfasts on board). For lunch’s we have some meat and pasta or meat and potato dishes that you simply add boiling water to. For our dinners, we got some spaghetti and meat sauce which again is simple to prepare. Being Irish myself and Denis also bought a bag of spuds (potatoes) and we have some mayonnaise and cheese left over from Paulatuk so this can be added into the mix at some point too. I also bought a bag of march mallows for fire toasting at some point. Obviously it would be great if we never had to use this shore food as it would mean we are constantly moving but considering we just had our first shore meal, it was probably a good call.

We’ve added in one extra meal into the our daily menu now which will be a bowl of noodles – we have chicken and beef flavours. So in total now we have four meals a day each – porridge for breakfast, two freeze dried meals and a bowl of noodles. In between we have also have half a bar of chocolate and a choice of either a power bar or a pop tart per day per man.

Each of us also bought whatever extra’s we wanted. We all bought a 700g bag of nuts that we can dip into. Myself and Denis decided to make up 20 little “treat bags” so we each have one of these per day for 20 days (or however long we can make them last). In mine I have some additional nuts, a few jellies, some skittles, one jam biscuit (to have with the cup of tea) and a few crackers.

We also bought more coffee, sugar and coffee mate. In an effort to make the coffee mate last longer, we agreed to start using a spoon rather than just pouring it into our cups. So we each get one spoon of coffee mate per hot drink we have. We got the hazelnut flavour too which is delicious. All in all I think we’re in good shape on the food front for the next month or so.

The ground anchor we picked up in Paulatuk is working well. This is something we will need to use regularly for the remainder of the trip and is quite important.

I had stupidly burnt one of my socks while drying it near the fire a few weeks ago so I bought another pair of warm socks which means I now have 3 pairs. One that I row in, one dry pair to keep for cabin wear only and then a spare pair for when either of the other two gets soaked (as will happen at some stage). I also bought an extra pair of gloves to keep the paws warm when on land. We all have neoprene gloves to keep our hands warm when rowing and these work well but having a dry pair for time on land will be a big help. I did have another pair but they weren’t great so I’ve upgraded a bit.

So that’s the end of my shopping for a month or so. Time for a coffee now before hitting the oars…….