The organizers of Walk to Tuk declared the initiative’s 10th anniversary to be its “biggest and best yet” as residents logged almost 180,000 hours of walking.
Each year, teams of people collectively try to walk a distance of 1,658 km to symbolize the distance along the Mackenzie River from Fort Providence to Tuktoyaktuk.
This year, organizers say around 4,900 people in 433 teams entered – more people, and teams, than ever before.
However, the final distance logged by all of 2020’s teams, 757,674 km, fell short of the 817,696 km reported by 349 teams a year earlier.
Nevertheless, organizers at the NWT Recreation and Parks Association said participants had accumulated on average 205 minutes of exercise each week, “far above the 150 minutes recommended” by national guidelines.
“We are proud of this northern-born event, largely because it offers a chance to connect communities and participants around the territory, and see the hard work done to keep our communities vibrant and healthy,” said the association in a news release last week.
The Little Rascals, a school team from Fort Providence, topped the Walk to Tuk’s 2020 leaderboard according to the initiative’s website. The rascals somehow managed to collectively walk 21,692 km, the website states – enough to walk to Tuk 13 times.
Hay River’s long-term care team, not far behind, posted a total of 19,062 km.
Cabin Radio’s team, which amassed a total of 1,462 km, would have come to a disappointing halt just south of Inuvik had the walk been for real.
This year’s walk took place during one of the NWT’s coldest winters in years, with regions like Yellowknife enduring multiple weeks of daily lows below -30C.