Wild Northerner Magazine 2015/16 Winter Issue - Page 40

The wind whips relentlessly across the frozen and snow-covered ground of remote northern Ontario. The sun rises to reveal -30C weather. It is bitterly cold.

Kielyn Marrone wakes from her sleep inside a canvas tent and draws the door open.

It is a beautiful, but harsh scene that greets her eyes. She has only one reaction.

“When I look out my tent each morning, it is hard for me not to smile,” Kielyn said. “This is home and I don’t ever want to leave.”

This happens throughout the seasons for Kielyn and her husband, Dave, who together, own and operate Lure of the North from a remote slice of land in northern Ontario near Espanola in the LaCloche mountains region.

Day after day, regardless of the weather or nature, Kielyn and Dave greet their days in the wilderness with such joy. Through LOTN, the married couple of four years share their passion and sense of adventure with anyone looking for a life-changing experience. They have seen it first hand. The couple has been guiding trips since 2011, after completing a 40-day self-supported snowshoe journey in northern Ontario in 2010. They are both graduates of the Laurentian University Outdoor Adventure Leadership degree program and have extensive training in first aid, wilderness safety and ice rescue. They have each travelled more than 2,000-km by snowshoe and enjoyed more than 250 nights out in the winter seasons.

The passion they both have for the outdoors and northern Ontario is undeniable. Kielyn was born in Brantford and Dave was born in Burnaby, B.C., but grew up in Belleville. The two attended Laurentian together and, essentially, fell in love with each other and the land up here and dug in their heels.

For Dave, 32, it was in him to ultimately share his love of outdoors adventure.

“When I got out of high school, I thought I would do solo adventures out west,” he said. “It didn’t take me long to realize I wasn’t going to be satisfied with doing that. We all have to give in this life. I had this passion for the outdoors and had to share it with others. I thought I would be wasting a gift. It is more fulfilling leading groups and hearing about how the experiences changes lives. I found what I was looking for.”

For Kielyn, 29, the past five years of sharing her outdoors love has been rewarding because it never ends.

“I see myself exploring as many waterways as possible,” she said. “I’m proud to live where I live. I spent my summers growing up in a marsh and rolling around in the dirt. I am where I am supposed to be. The last five years has solidified who I am as a person. I have come into my own because this has been a great outlet for me to express myself in so many ways. It is an honour to do this with Dave. We are both equally on board and all in for doing this each day.”

Each year, Kielyn and Dave march through wilderness and bring people from all kinds of different backgrounds together and work towards the goal of enjoying the adventure and exploring new things. It is the reactions people have to the challenging situations that is so rewarding. The impact on their clients can be dramatic.