North

Walking to Tuktoyaktuk 'something special,' says man doing it for 2nd time

Organizer Peter Clarkson said he expects the walk to raise about $4,000 for school programming in Inuvik and Tuktoyaktuk.

3 people are walking the Inuvik Tuktoyaktuk Highway to raise money for schools

David Elmy, left, Nicole Petersen, and Peter Clarkson start their walk from Inuvik to Tuktoyaktuk Friday. They're doing it for the adventure, and to raise money for schools in the two communities. (Mackenzie Scott/CBC)

Drivers on the N.W.T.'s Inuvik Tuktoyaktuk Highway will have to watch for pedestrians this holiday long weekend.

Three people plan to walk the approximately 150-kilometre road this weekend as part of a fundraiser for schools in both communities.

They're raising money for health and wellness programs at the schools.

Peter Clarkson helped organize the walk. He figures it will take about four days to complete, and he would know — this is the second time he's covered the distance by foot.

"Getting to Tuk — arriving at the ocean by the Inuvik Tuk highway — I think is something special," said Clarkson.

"It is gonna be hard work ... We're gonna do roughly 37 kilometres a day."

Clarkson said it's scenery and wildlife that will occupy the walkers over the days. They won't be camping along the way. Instead, they'll be picked up at the end of each day's walking and returned to the same place the next day to continue the walk.

"It's a pretty extreme adventure for me," said Nicole Petersen, a regional sales manager for Air North. She, along with Vancouver travel agent David Elmy, round out the trio of walkers.

David Elmy, far right, Nicole Petersen, and Peter Clarkson with students from Inuvik who joined them for a portion of their walk Friday morning. (Mackenzie Scott/CBC)

"I'm quite excited. I mean we're walking through some of the most beautiful territory in the world. So it's a privilege."

Clarkson said they expect to raise about $4,000 for each school by the time their adventure is done.

Friday morning they were joined by students from schools in Inuvik for a portion of the walk. Students in Tuktoyaktuk also made a show of support with a bit of walk from the other end.

Clarkson said they were joined by staff from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources while the youth were out, just to make sure everyone was safe. Clarkson said they're carrying bear spray and bear bangers for the walk, just in case they get some unwelcome company.

"Hopefully we don't see any bears too close," he said.

With files from Mackenzie Scott

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