John Rae festivities set for Canada, Orkney

John Rae has legs. His contemporaries knew that. They hailed him as the greatest snowshoe traveler of the Victorian era. Here in the 21st century, the peerless Arctic explorer has been carrying Fatal Passage overland for more than a decade. He has turned it into my all-time bestselling book, and for that I am grateful. Sundry celebrations of Rae are now upon us. That`s because he was born in Orkney in September 1813 — 200 years ago next month. And because he solved the two great mysteries of 19th century Arctic exploration: Rae discovered both the final link in the Northwest Passage and the fate of the ill-starred 1845 expedition led by Sir John Franklin. Above, overlooking Rae Strait, we see Louie Kamookak and Our Hero on two separate occasions. Of the myriad looming celebrations, I will be speaking at three, one each in Calgary, Hamilton, and Stromness, Orkney. Hope to see you at one of those. Check What`s New for details.

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