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Chemin du lac Ujarasujjulik

Fatbike et cueillette dans la toundra

Photos and Text by Olivier Paradis and Marie-Andrée Fortin

 English version to come…

Fin de l’été dans la toundra. On avance lentement sur le chemin du lac Ujarasujjulik, nous on l’appelle le lac Barnoin, vous comprenez pourquoi. Les gens du village y vont surtout pour pêcher, quelques cabanes y sont bien installées, surplombant le lac. On vient de rouler la douzaine de kilomètres qui nous séparent de la petite communauté Inuit où l’on demeure.

C’est le plus loin qu’on peut se rendre, c’est une des seules routes qui relit le village à…  À quoi ? Un lac poissonneux ? La toundra ? Quelques vieilles bicoques de tôle ? Ou encore à rien du tout ! Pour se rendre au village voisin, on doit prendre l’avion.

Bref ces routes qui mènent vers nulle part sont à nos yeux, de superbes sentiers de vélo. Une rivière à traverser, quelques belles montées, des courbes serrées dans les descentes abruptes et d’innombrables lacs scintillants.

La toundra, pour ceux qui l’ont apprivoisée, recèle aussi de nombreux trésors. Osez braver les moustiques et vous serez récompensé de gargantuesques talles de bleuets, de camarines noires par milliers, de chicoutés juteuses, sans oublier ces énormes bolets laissés pour contre. Quand on ne marche pas sur des petits fruits murs, on piétine le thé du labrador. Les lacs sont gorgés de truites frémissantes. La baie d’Ungava et les rivières qui s’y jettent débordent d’ombles Chevalier. Des centaines de lagopèdes perchés dans les bouleaux nains. Des lièvres géants immobiles se croyant invisibles. Le territoire Inuit est un véritable garde-manger.

On roule, on s’arrête on cueille et on se gave de petites baies et les mains tachées de jus de bleuets on reprend la route.

Le temps est bon.

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