NEWS

High Arctic adventurer rescued near Taloyoak

03/13/2014 01:51 EDT | Updated 05/13/2014 05:59 EDT
An adventurer attempting to trek 2,300 kilometres on foot across the High Arctic had to be rescued Wednesday night just nine days into his journey.

Vincent Cochin had planned to spend 80 days travelling from Kugaaruk, Nunavut, to Qaanaaq, Greenland, by ski and snowshoe in an effort to break the world record for the longest unsupported, unassisted Arctic journey. 

Sgt. Yvonne Niego says Nunavut RCMP were notified late Wednesday night that a SPOT alarm had been triggered near Taloyoak.

Three search and rescue members from Taloyoak say they had problems finding the man at the location indicated by the SPOT device. They continued searching and say they found him in a tent, wrapped in a blanket and very cold.

Rescuer John Ukuqtunnuaq said Cochin got up and ate and drank tea. He said he had cold feet but that he was fine and that he would continue his trek.

Rescuers left Cochin to continue his journey.

Cochin, 30, activated his SPOT device alarm again at 6 a.m. the next morning. He was rescued and taken to the health centre in Taloyoak, where he was treated for minor injuries and released.

Reached by CBC, Cochin said he activated his SPOT device after he discovered he had a frozen toe. He said his boots weren't warm enough, and the leather got tight with the cold and squeezed his feet.

He said a nurse at the Taloyoak health centre told him that she doesn't think he will lose any of his toes but he has to go to the hospital in Yellowknife to see a doctor.

His expedition is over and Cochin doesn't know if he will try again.

"It's a lot of money, a lot of preparation," he said. "I've been thinking to do that trip for years. I'd have to find the energy again to re-do the whole thing. It's a lot of money and I don't have a lot of money."

He said he now realizes that choosing the right equipment and testing it out beforehand is really important.

Cochin is from France but spends a lot of time in Yellowknife.

MORE:cbcNews