Earlier this year the Cooper Tires team including 7 intrepid tyre store owners, set off on the ultimate ice road adventure, travelling across the frozen Arctic Ocean on Cooper Discoverer S/TMAXX tyres.
The trip started off at Whitehorse in Yukon Territory where the team picked up their Cooper-equipped vehicles and collected their survival and cold weather gear. They then visited Dawson City, a historic town that was the centre of the world-famous Klondike Gold Rush in the 1890’s. They still mine for gold to this day. While in Dawson City, the team was lucky enough to watch the start of the Percy de Wolfe dog sled race which is a 200-mile race down and back along the Yukon River in the tracks of the legendary mailman, Percy de Wolfe.
The team then travelled north along the Dempster Highway, which mostly remains frozen for much of the year. The Tombstone Ranges provided a scenic backdrop for nearly 400km and is mostly uninhabited apart from bears, caribou and moose!
Eagle Plains was the next stop, home to one of the most memorable views of the Richardson Mountains. While in Eagle Plains the team braced the -20° temperatures to watch the Aurora Borealis, better known as the Northern Lights.
The team then spent 3 nights in Inuvik, the starting point of their ice road adventure. Inuvik is located 2° above the Arctic Circle on the Scenic Mackenzie River and Delta, which freeze over in the winter to form the 2 meters thick ice road from Inuvik to Tuktoyaktuk, the most northerly town in Canada you can drive to. The tiny town of 900 lies on the shores of the Arctic Ocean at the tip of the Northwest Territories and is only accessible by the ice roads.
In total the ice road is about 180km long and takes approximately 3 hours to drive. The team found the ice road relatively easy to drive on, even when the top layer began to melt in the sun. The S/TMAXX continued to provide good traction even without studs or chains.
After conquering the ice road the team headed back to Inuvik where they tried a traditional meal of muktuk (whale blubber), dried fish, caribou jerky, moose soup, a roast of caribou and homemade bread. They then braved -32° temperatures to sleep the night in a Quince (Igloo). “You haven’t felt cold until you sleep in an igloo”, was a common comment.
Overall the trip was a huge success with the Cooper Discoverer S/TMAXX tyres providing a safe, reliable drive across the frozen Arctic Ocean.
If you want to know more about the Cooper Tires Ice Road Adventure check out Ron and Viv Moon’s blog here. Or for more information on the Cooper Discoverer S/TMAXX call our team of tyre specialists on 1300 COOPER.