In Canada, going “from coast to coast to coast” is a common refrain. But while many have dipped their toes in the Atlantic, Pacific and Arctic Oceans—thereby achieving the country’s travel trifecta—Dana Meise is on his way to becoming the first person to do so by hiking the distance between each ocean.
For the past seven years, Meise has been hiking the Trans Canada Trail solo, from Cape Spear, Newfoundland (the country’s most eastern point), to Middle Island, Ontario (the southernmost point) to Clover Point in Victoria, B.C. (the most western point). Last year, weather and safety concerns forced him to end his hiking season a mere 1,700 kilometers shy of the Trans Canada Trail’s northernmost point. Now, with the help of an expedition grant from The Royal Canadian Geographical Society, he aims to complete his journey’s final instalment. If successful, he will have amassed a grand total of 21,500 walked kilometers.
“If you are reading this then "The Great Hike" has officially begun,” wrote Meise on July 22 on his trip’s Facebook account, posting from a spot on the Klondike Highway just past Whitehorse, Yukon. Social media has been Meise’s platform of choice for sharing stories, photos and geographic insights with his engaged following. When he is outside cellular service, he posts updates using his satellite phone, such as the following:
So far in the Yukon I've learned the locals call tourists "terrorists" and a Y-ukon Turn is the same as a regular U-Turn except you have to hit the curb up on the sidewalk roll off then onward. Or so I've learned.
I am somewhere though not sure where. Tomorrow is Carmacks ill be there mid afternoon Tonight I sleep to the sound of Loons & distant Wolves howling at the moon
I had a very nice day despite having to hold up in an outhouse for an hour waiting out a thunder storm. In fact in my tent now which I barly (sic) got up in time...
As of August 11 Meise had made it to Pelly Crossing, Yukon, about 270 kilometers from where he started.
The Trans Canada Trail is one of the world’s longest networks of trails and waterways. So far, over 18,000 kilometers of Trail have been developed. By 2017 (Canada’s 150th birthday) the Trail is due to be completed, stretching 24,000 kilometers and connecting nearly 1,000 communities.