9. LUNKER LAND PAYNE RIVER FISHING CAMP, QUEBEC
The baffling mystique of Baffin Island
More than 1,000 miles north of Montreal you'll find Ungava Bay, home to some of the fiercest arctic char in Canada. After flying to Kuujjuaq, board a Twin Otter for the one-hour flight to the Payne River Fishing Camp, a four-cabin spread with a main lodge overlooking the tundra. Your Inuit guides will show you to Payne Bay Fjord, where low tides improve your chances of landing a lunker. Nearby Payne River is the ideal spot to paddle out in the lodge's 24-foot freighter canoe and test your angling skills against the native brookies. Spend your sun-filled nights watching herds of caribou before crashing in an oil-heated cabin. Arctic Adventures (800-465-9474, www.arcticadventures.ca) runs five-day, six-night trips, with a guide for every two anglers, for $4,100 per person (including flight from Montreal). 10. GRUELING SCHOOLING NORTHWINDS TRAINING CAMP, NUNAVUT
Last year, veteran polar explorers Paul Landry and Matty McNair (leader of the first all-women team to reach the geographic North Pole, in 1997) decided to fling wide the Arctic gates by opening a training camp on Baffin Island's south shore. Sign up for NorthWinds' two-week course, offered in the bitter cold of February near Iqaluit, on Frobisher Bay, and they'll teach you first about navigation (your shadow points due northor southat noon local time), how to sleep in minus-35-degree weather (use a vapor-barrier liner and two sleeping bags), and how to double your daily ski mileage (fly a power kite). You'll camp out on the ice near Iqaluit for the first six nights, then head out across Frobisher Bay for a six-day, 75-mile shakedown expedition. The two-week course with NorthWinds (867-979-0551, www.northwinds-arctic.com) costs $3,000 per person.