Raising Children in a Digital World

Join us for an evening presentation on Feb. 21 with Dr. Gordon Neufeld.

Learn More...

Southeastern Manitoba has seen both incredible snowfalls and incredible cold in the past few weeks and a woman staying at the Rennie Hotel is using these conditions to practice for her camping expedition to the Northwest Territories.

“I’m hiking to the Arctic and I will encounter the same weather over there as right here in Manitoba,” says Melanie Vogel.

Vogel has been hiking across Canada since she left Cape Spear, Newfoundland in June of 2017. Her progress along the Trans Canada Trail suddenly stopped cold as she entered the Whiteshell just as the polar vortex hit.

2019 02 melanie3Vogel has been shut into the Rennie Hotel as she waits for the unruly winter weather to pass (Photo credit: Melanie Vogel).

Upon arriving in the Whiteshell, Vogel quickly realized her clothing was not capable of handling -40ºC. Instead of tenting as per usual, Vogel hunkered down in the Rennie Hotel while she waited for the weather to pass. She expected to wait three days. It has now been over four weeks.

Vogel has spent recent days ordering warmer supplies, and calling the Northwest Territories RCMP to put a safety plan in place should something go wrong.

“Sitting down right now and planning ahead is equally important as being on the trail; it’s all part of the learning,” she comments.

2019 02 melanie2Vogel pulls much of her supplies behind her in a sled (Photo credit: Melanie Vogel).

Vogel willingly admits that any long journey has setbacks. “I didn’t plan on going through the Manitoba prairies in winter,” she laughs. Nevertheless, delays elsewhere during her trip have placed her in Rennie during one of the coldest times of the year.

When asked why she would embark on such a lengthy endeavor Vogel replies simply: “I have always wanted to see Canada.” Vogel moved to Canada from Germany ten years ago and fell in love with the country. When she first heard about the Great Trail several years ago it seemed, to her, a logical path to take.

“Back then when I made this decision I didn’t realize how good of a decision it was,” offers Vogel. “When you walk, you develop a much deeper connection to the land and to the people in their communities because you are taking the time.”

2019 02 melanie4One of Vogel's many campsites throughout the winter (Photo credit: Melanie Vogel).

Vogel says she has been shocked at the kindness she has received all across Canada, but specifically from this part of the province. “The people here in Manitoba are awesome,” states Vogel, who notes that several of her nights at the Rennie Hotel have been fully paid for by anonymous residents who have dropped by to support her journey.

“Its actually unbelievable how much hospitality I have experienced. The people here are so selfless.”

Still, Vogel has now spent a significant amount of time in one spot and hopes to get moving as soon as possible.

“My wish is to have a few more extremely cold nights so I can test my gear here in Rennie before heading out.”

Vogel plans on treking from Rennie into Saskatchewan, then up to the Northwest Territories. She plans on eventually ending her travels in BC in 2020. She says this journey is made possible by a small collection of sponsors and a much larger group of people throughout the country who have been happy to give her lodging, food, and friendship.

Those interested in following Vogel's adventures can find her on facebook at "Between Sunsets: A Trail Story".


More Local News

Anola Celebrating The Life Of Louis Riel

A spokesperson for the Anola Metis Local says Monday will be an opportunity for them to celebrate the founding father of Manitoba. Monday is Louis Riel Day in this province. It also marks the 5th…

Rash Of Vehicle Thefts Prompts Police Warning

Following a string of vehicle thefts in the Steinbach area in recent days, RCMP are asking for the public's assistance. Police say there have been numerous motor vehicles stolen, including quads and…

Baby Burnard Home At Last

After a rocky month of medical complications, travel, and three life-saving surgeries, a family from Steinbach is finally reunited in their own home. Declan was born to Mike and Jasmine Burnard on…

Hanover Gives Approval To Cabinet Maker

Second time's a charm for a cabinet maker from Hanover. Andreas Esau appeared before council in July, looking to build a shop at 14 Sterling Drive, which is a Rural Residential area south of…

Wiens Road Reconstruction Potentially Slated For 2019

The Chair of the Local Urban District Committee of Grunthal says there are two capital projects they would like to tackle in 2019. But, Anita Funk says they must first have their budget approved by…
2017 11 ted falk2

Falk Says Immigration 'Lottery' Proves Frustrating For Local Residents

Provencher Member of Parliament Ted Falk says January 28th was a frustrating day for a number of local immigrant families. He explains at 11:00 a.m. that day Refugees and Citizenship Canada opened up…
2018 02 louis riel

Most Stores Closed Monday In Steinbach

Monday will be a quiet day for retail in Steinbach. Monday, February 18 is Louis Riel Day. (A statue of Louis Riel can be found on the Manitoba Legislative grounds.)Michelle Bezditny is Executive…

City Council Asked To Consider Toonie Swim Nights

The Mayor for Steinbach says city council's decision to raise public swim fees is generating mostly positive feedback. On January 22nd, council announced fees will be going up by about one dollar…

Cold, Dry Long Weekend Forecast

The long weekend forecast for Steinbach calls for temperatures well below normal. But, Natalie Hasell with Environment Canada says you might make it through the entire weekend without needing a…

Hanover Identifies Priorities

Council for the Rural Municipality of Hanover has identified seniors housing as one of its priorities for the next two years. The commitment was made at last weekend's strategic planning session. In…

La Broquerie Residents Will Not Be Accountable For 2018 Utility Deficit

La Broquerie residents will not be financially responsible for recovering the costs of an anticipated $17,000 in utility deficit from 2018. Reeve Lewis Weiss explains that this deficit was initially…

Humble Artist From St. Pierre Appointed To The Order Of Canada

An 84-year-old man, formerly from St. Pierre, who has fulfilled his childhood dream of drawing and cartooning for a living, has been appointed into the Order of Canada. Real Berard was appointed for…

Steinbachonline.com is Steinbach's only source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.