Just Call Me Little Red

In 1992 we were living in Fort Vermilion, Alberta, right near Santa’s workshop, and we decided to venture down to THE CITY…. a nine hour drive to Taco Bell. An average temperature for Jan. was -35C…. or FRIGID. In the winter the logging dirt road was frozen over and it saved us about three hours of driving time straight to Edmonton.  The initial 160 mile stretch of roadway was barren and desolate. Red Earth was the un-mapped gas station three hours from home.  We would notify friends of our departure time and if we didn’t call in 3 1/2 hours, they were to come looking for us.

We were driving a royal blue 1985 Honda Civic four door hatchback with minimal rust. It was late at night, but with the Northern lights, the sky was surprisingly lit as were the seven-foot snowbanks on each side of the “highway.” It was like driving in an Olympic luge tube… minus the bobsled.  Music was blaring and we were making good time when I mentioned to Rick from beneath my fur-lined parka hood that I saw something on the road ahead. As he slowed down to 25 miles per hour we came upon a wolf pack running down the “highway” in the same direction we were heading. There were 6 or 7 full grown, bushy white wolves with fur so thick, they looked like lions.  When we were almost to their heels, the pack split and we were driving in between the wolves.  It was surreal.

Sitting in a Honda Civic is basically like sitting on a skateboard.  The wolves’ heads were even with ours and they kept glancing at us with their silver eyes as they ran within 3 feet of the car.  CREEP ME OUT!  I proceeded to do what any civil minded woman would do… I began locking all the door locks… so the wolves wouldn’t get in the car.  Rick burst out in a guffaw saying, “Yeah, wolves are known for opening car door handles.”  Not funny.  He continued mocking me, “At least we’re driving our Civic and not our VW Rabbit!  Wolves eat rabbits.”  I was not laughing.

Our journey in the heat of the pack lasted less than a minute, but it felt like 487 minutes to me.  I was raised in the Silicon Valley, CALIFORNIA, for Pete’s sake.  I wasn’t accustomed to arctic wolves.  Finally the wolves separted and we began pulling away from the pack.  My mind was running amuck, as you can well imagine.  I started asking wolf questions.  “Do wolves eat people?”  Rick was very reassuring, “Not very often.  Only if they’re REALLY hungry and there’s not prey available.”  Good.  Relief washed over me.  “Those wolves looked REALLY hungry,” he added for his personal amusement.  Not funny AGAIN!

Rick thought the whole episode was very COOL!  I felt like Little Red Riding Hood trapped in a Mutual of Omaha Wild Kingdom show gone bad. 

See what I’ve put up with for 21 LONG years????  I hope I don’t have nightmares tonight. (Or if I do, I hope it’s the orangutan beating one again… see previous post:  https://mysistersjar.wordpress.com/2008/05/03/pre-book-signing-nightmare/.)

www.LindaCrosby.com

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4 Responses to “Just Call Me Little Red”

  1. Brent Thompson Says:

    Ha, Rick is such the joker… gotta love him.

    I had a wolf encounter this past fall too. Didn’t end as well as yours unfortunately. I wasn’t in a car and they WERE hungry.

  2. Jennie C. Says:

    I think I’ve acclimated a LOT better than you. That sounds like an incredible experience – I would have loved it.

  3. The Informal Matriarch Says:

    arctic wolves??? lol.

    That would have been such a cool experience. I’ve never seen a wolf in the wild even though I live in the “arctic”.

  4. rixgal Says:

    So Brent, that’s it? We are left in suspense? Come on! Spill the beans.

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