It started as a normal fishing expedition for commercial fishers Mallory, Cliff, and Allan as they set up traps for the end of the crab season. Then everything changed when they drove out into colder waters.
In the distance, they noticed something on top of an iceberg. Not knowing what the object was, they decided to venture closer. Never in their wildest dreams did they think a routine fishing trip would turn into a rescue mission. All they knew was they had to act fast.
It Started With Three Friends And Their Hobby
Mallory Harrigan, Allan Russell, and Cliff Russel have always enjoyed their time out on the water. So much so that the three friends decided to go in on a fishing boat, deciding that they would turn their passion into a commercial fishing business.
Living in Canada, they knew what type of fish their local restaurants were looking to purchase. But what they didn’t expect was finding something sitting on top of a lone iceberg during one of their morning hauls.
Commercial Fishing Was A Tough Business
They might have become business partners, but Mallory, Allan, and Cliff were first and foremost friends. Even during the toughest and roughest days out at sea, none of them blamed the other, and they always pulled through.
Coming back to land with new bumps, bruises, and smiles, the three men were always excited to get back out on the water early the next morning. But the next morning was going to prove to be something else altogether.
Mallory Felt Something Shift In The Air
On that fateful morning, Mallory got up bright and early, feeling like the day was going to be different. So, she decided to get to the boat earlier than normal, prepping everything for their early morning launch.
Once Allan and Cliff arrived at the dock, the three went ahead to complete their pre-launch list, making sure everything was on the boat. The last thing they wanted was to lose hours on the water because they had to travel back to land.
The Calm Before The Storm
With all three of them prepping the boat for launch, they got through the checklist fairly quickly. It helped that they were old friends, joking and telling stories during the early hours of the morning. It was the calm before the storm.
When it was finally time to launch, the three locals knew exactly where they were headed — a few miles off the Canadian coast. It was the perfect time of the year to set some good old-fashioned crab traps.
Time To Drop The Traps To The Floor
Once everything was ready, Mallory, Allan, and Cliff set off for their destination. Once there, they idled the boat, getting their traps ready to drop to the seafloor. It was the end of crab season, but the trio was hopeful that this last haul would be a good one.
Since starting their business, this year was their most successful yet! They wanted to end the season on a high note. And, hopefully, that meant hauling in lots of crab!
It Was The Best Catch Of The Season
They knew the next movements like the back of their hands. While one of them drove the boat, the other two would man the lines, making sure nothing got tangling while they motored through the water.
When it came time to reel in the traps, the trio couldn’t believe their eyes. The spot had paid off! From the look of it, this was their best catch of the season. Now, it was time to do it again.
The Trio Was Thrilled
Mallory, Cliff, and Allan couldn’t believe their eyes. This had to be their best catch of the season, and their day was just getting started. Preparing to drop the traps to the seafloor once again, the trio couldn’t contain their excitement.
For them, this is what it’s all about. Getting out on the water and bringing in a good haul to sell to their local markets. They couldn’t have been more thrilled with the outcome.
The Landscape Was Beautifully Eerie
After a few more passes at that spot, the trio set route to colder waters. Being local, Mallory, Allan, and Cliff knew that the further out they went, the more dangerous things would become.
From the lack of birds to colonies of seals lying about on icebergs, it was a beautiful landscape and yet eerie at the same time. All the trio could do now is hope this spot paid off as well as the last.
Vigilance Was The Name Of The Game
As the trio knew, the Labrador Sea was no place to drive a boat on autopilot. There were huge icebergs everywhere, and one wrong move could mean the end of the groups fishing expeditions and possibly their lives.
They were extra vigilant, not wanting to crash. Allan was even appointed on lookout duty as an extra precaution! It’s one of those instances where the trio would much rather be extra safe than sorry. But they never expected Allan to see something in the distance.
Allan Spotted Something In The Distance
While Allan was on watch duty, he spotted something in the distance. Yelling out to Mallory and Cliff, he pointed towards a lone iceberg, not really sure what he was seeing on top of the mass.
He wasn’t the only one. Neither Cliff nor Mallory could make out the shape either. Mallory suspected it was just a seal that found itself away from the colony to bask in the sun.
Mallory And Cliff Has A Theory Allan Didn’t Agree With
Mallory believed the object was just a lone seal, and Cliff was more than happy to hop onto the theory. Allan, on the other hand, wasn’t so sure. It was strange, though. They’d seen more than a few sea animals during their adventures, so why was this one thing rubbing him the wrong way?
It couldn’t possibly be as big of a deal as he’s making it out to be. Could it?
It Wasn’t Moving Like A Seal
After a few more glances in the direction of the iceberg, Allan concluded that it definitely wasn’t a seal. It just wasn’t moving like one. He told Mallory and Cliff what he thought. And after looking through their binoculars, the two had to agree with him.
Whatever’s on the iceberg, it definitely wasn’t a seal. So, back at square one, the trio had no idea what could be out in the middle of the ocean on a lone iceberg.
They Wanted To Get A Better Look
Once everyone was on the same page, the trio tried to get back to fishing. But their curiosity got the better of them, and they couldn’t focus on the task at hand. All they wanted to do was figure out what was on the iceberg.
So, they did what most curious young people do; they moved closer and tried to get a better look at whatever was sitting on the iceberg.
Not A Seal But Definitely An Animal
The wind began to pick up the closer they moved to the iceberg. But it didn’t take long for the group to realize that while it might not be a seal, whatever was on the iceberg was definitely an animal of some kind.
And it had fur! Mallory, Cliff, and Allan, couldn’t help but think the poor thing must be freezing cold, being wet with the wind picking up speed.
The Trio Wanted To Help But Didn’t Know How
As a group, Mallory, Cliff, and Allan decided that their fishing trip was on hold until they figure out if there was a way they could help the animal on the iceberg. Even that was up in the air, though, considering they had no idea what they were dealing with.
At this point, they were playing the entire thing by ear. All they could do was hope there was some way they could help the shivering animal.
Venturing Into Unexplored Waters
Using extreme caution, the trio slowly brought the boat closer and closer to the iceberg. It was a risky move. Not only did they not know what type of animal they were about to encounter, but they were venturing into unexplored waters.
Mallory and Cliff were a bit hesitant on the move, but Allan reassured them. And together, the three friends agreed that if there was something they could do for the animal, they had to try.
Ice Damage Could Mean Being Stranded
They were extra careful as they moved closer to the iceberg. With the waves picking up speed, the boat was moving a bit more than they would have liked, and one rouge ice chunk would be damaging to the boat’s haul.
And the last thing they wanted was to be stranded out in the water! But they had to do what they could for the animal; there was no doubt in their minds.
Wind Made Navigation Even Harder
Then, something unexpected happened. The wind picked up, rocking their boat and making navigation to the iceberg even harder than it was before. But it wasn’t their boat Mallory, Cliff, and Allan were worried about.
The strong gust of wind rattled the iceberg! They were afraid that whatever animal was on the iceberg, was going to get spooked and decide to jump into the water. That would be horrible! The trio had to move fast.
They Hoped The Animal Wouldn’t Jump Into The Water
With the winds picking up and the water becoming rougher, the trio was horrified that the animal was going to jump into the freezing water. What would they do then? There was no way for them to jump in after it. They’d catch hypothermia!
All they could do was hope the animal, whatever it was, didn’t scare easily and that it would remain as calm as possible on top of the iceberg.
It Started As A Crabbing Trip Now They’re Here
The last thing Mallory, Cliff, and Allan thought they were going to do that day was chasing an iceberg across the Labrador Sea! All they were planning was one last crabbing trip before the season came to an end.
Now, they’re off-course and chasing a block of ice in hopes of rescuing an unknown animal from freezing. All they could do was hope they made it to the iceberg in time. They were losing daylight.
The Unkown Animal Began To Take Shape
As the boat moved closer to the iceberg, the unknown animal began to take shape. From what Mallory, Cliff, and Allan could see, the animal had four legs and kind of had the body of a dog.
But there was no way someone had lost their pet out in the middle of the ocean, right? One thing was for sure, though. Whatever the four-legged creature was, it was soaking wet and shivering uncontrollably.
They Were Going To Rescue The Animal By Any Means
Once Mallory, Cliff, and Allan realized the poor creature was soaking wet and shivering uncontrollably, they knew they had to do everything in their power to rescue it, even if that means putting themselves in a bit more danger.
But what’s a little rough water to three experience fishermen, right? What they didn’t know is that they were about to come in contact with something completely unexpected. And it sure wasn’t a dog!
The Trio Identified The Animal
The trio was close enough now to identify the animal. And needless to say, they couldn’t believe what they were looking at. Mallory, Cliff, and Allan all stared in disbelief at a tiny Arctic fox!
But they had no time to figure out how the poor thing stranded itself. It was freezing, weak, and the MIA birds were now starting to return, circling the sick-looking fox as if it was their next meal.
Moving Fast Was A Must
Obviously, the three fishermen weren’t going to let the birds get the little Arctic fox. So, they quickly jumped into action, thinking of different ways to get the fox off the iceberg and keep them warm.
It was a matter of acting quickly and utilizing the gear they had around the boat. But time was not on their side. And they also had to take into consideration that this wasn’t someone’s pet; it was a wild animal.
Will The Fox Trust Them?
The team knew they had to move fast if the Arctic fox was going to survive. Working together, they came up with a plan. But there was still a huge question that would make or break the rescue mission.
Was the Arctic fox going to allow humans to help it? Even though the trio knew they meant the fox no harm, it’s still a wild animal and probably had never been face-to-face with a human before.
Coaxing The Fox Wasn’t Easy
With nothing to lose, Mallory, Cliff, and Allan went about coaxing the Arctic fox towards them the only way they knew how: sticking their hands out while saying encouraging things to the animal, as not to frighten it off.
Unfortunately, while that strategy might work with a frightened dog, the fox was not being persuaded. In fact, it looked more scared now that three people had entered its little cold home.
Patience Is A Virtue
While it was worth a shot, the coaxing was not working. The fox looked more ready to jump off the iceberg into the freezing water than into the warm arms of the people trying to help him.
But this was a wild animal, so the trio was going to have to be patient if they planned on bringing the fox to warmth and safety. And so, a stare off and a game of witts commenced!
They Settled In For The Long Game
The game was on! But they were losing daylight fast and wished the fox would cooperate and let them help it onto the boat. But that wasn’t going to happen, and the trio settled in for the long game.
The three fishermen’s patience was being tested, but there was no way they were going to leave the Arctic fox alone on an iceberg in the middle of the ocean. They’d wait it out.
Taking A Leap Of Faith
Just when they thought all hope was lost, the fox moved towards the boat. Was the wild animal going to put its trust in the three strange humans? With nothing left to lose, that’s exactly what the fox did.
Too weak to jump into the vessel itself, the fox turned to Allan for help. The fisherman gently took the fox and placed it inside the boat. Now, it was a matter of getting it warm.
Blankets And Warmth Were Next
The Arctic fox was onboard! But things still weren’t right with the poor animal. Just because they were able to get the creature off the iceberg doesn’t mean it automatically stopped shivering.
So, Allan and Cliff went about searching for dry towels, hoping the fox would allow them to bundle it up and get it warm. They weren’t sure how long the fox’s trust was going to last, though. One wrong move and it could go into attack mode.
“I Made A Huge Mistake”
Well, the fox didn’t go into attack mode. But it did go into “I made a huge mistake” mode, jumping out of the boat before the three friends knew what was happening. With the little strength the Arctic fox had left, it swam to the iceberg.
Of course, the fisherman trailed behind it, making sure the poor thing didn’t drown. Once it ran out of energy, Allan carefully picked the fox back up.
Back On The Boat
Allan was cautious picking the fox up, as it clearly was horrified of the three humans and wanted nothing to do with them. But they weren’t going to leave the fox to freeze, so Allan placed it back in the boat.
Scurrying over to a corner, the fox stayed there and didn’t move. It was obvious the wild animal was scared of the new situation it found itself in. At least the trio knew the fox was safe.
Planning Part 2
The trio made way for land with the Arctic fox back in the boat, hoping they wouldn’t have to chase the creature down again. Now, it was a matter of getting the poor thing warm without actually touching it with blankets.
That’s when they came up with a plan. If the fox wasn’t going to let them touch it or swaddle it in warm blankets, then they would have to make it a makeshift bed.
They Were Working Quickly To Make The Fox Comfortable
With Mallory steering, Cliff and Allan thought of a way to get the fox warm without the use of blankets. So, they looked round the boat to see if they had anything that could help make him more comfortable.
If they didn’t work quickly, there was no doubt in their minds that the little fox was going to go into shock. So they began their search, quickly coming up with a plan.
Mallory Had A Great Suggestion
While Cliff and Allan were searching the boat for something to making the fox warm, Mallory stepped out from behind the wheel and made a suggestion. She suggested that they should stop trying to find something to cover the fox with and focus more on making warmer accommodations.
It wasn’t a bad idea! They could make a makeshift room, no problem! Now it was a matter of gathering some materials together.
They Made An Insulated Bed
Searching around the boat, Cliff and Allan found a pile of sawdust. And while the material might not make for the most comfortable sleeping pallet, it would help the fox’s body temperature.
Using a big bin they had lying around, the two fishermen got to work piling the sawdust inside, hoping it would act as insulation. Then, they moved the bin to the sunniest spot on the boat. Now it was a matter of getting the fox in the bin.
Exhausted, The Fox Passed Out Right Away
There was no way the little fox had enough energy to get himself into the bin, nor did the trio think it would go inside on its own regardless. So, Allan once again picked the weak Arctic fox up, gently placing it inside the warm bin.
In a matter of seconds, the fox was passed out. Now it was up to the three fishermen to get to the Canadian shore as quickly as possible. The little guy needed a veterinarian ASAP.
One Wave Woke The Fox Back Up
The were probably 30 minutes from the mainland when Cliff took over steering from Mallory. And while Cliff trusts his co-captain, he didn’t think their little passenger had a half hour. So, he changed course.
Unfortunately, the new course resulted in a wave that jolted the exhausted fox awake. they needed to calm the fox down before it got any funny ideas and decided to jump overboard again. That’s when Mallory thought of something.
Mallory Wanted To Give The Fox Some Food
Mallory came up with a brilliant idea. They could try feeding the fox! Who knew how long the little guy was stranded on that iceberg. It was probably starving, and the fisherman had more than enough from that day’s haul that they could spare a fish or two.
A good nourishing meal could do wonders for the weak animal. But it begged the question, was the fox going to trust them enough to take the food?
Seafood Wasn’t Cutting It
Even though the fox was startled awake, at least it was dry. With that hurdle out of the way, Mallory tried feeding it. Approaching the wild animal with caution, she offered up some of the crews fish and crab. Freshly caught that morning.
The fox couldn’t have been more disinterested in the concept. But Mallory was determined to get something in the little guy’s stomach. So, she went to their personal food stores.
Vienna Sausages To The Rescue
The seafood was clearly not the Arctic fox’s cup of tea. So, Mallory went to their personal food stores, seeing if they brought anything that the fox would eat. She found some Vienna sausages. Maybe the little guy liked red meat a bit better?
She gave it a try, placing the sausages in a bowl and soaking them in water. After a few sniffs, the fox scarfed the food down, absolutely ravenous.
Finally, They Were Docking
As any full and exhausted animal would do, the fox fell back asleep after its meal. But it wasn’t long before the boat made it to shore and was ready to dock. Unfortunately, docking is quite loud, and the commotion re-woke the Arctic fox.
Mallory was on it, though. Sitting with the little guy, saying soothing words hoping to calm it down as much as possible even though it didn’t understand anything she was saying.
It Was Time For One Last Solution
Safely docked, the three friends had to figure out their next plan of attack. They had a wild, weak, and exhausted Arctic fox in their care. What were they supposed to do with it?
Thankfully, the little guy was now dry, as warm as they could make it, and fed. But that didn’t mean they could keep him. Mallory, Cliff, and Allan needed to come up with one last grand solution.
Mallory Remembered Something Close To The Docks
Since she was coming up with solutions most of the day, it came as no surprise when Mallory came up with one last thought. She remembered there was a clearing close to the docks.
It would be the perfect spot to release the tiny fox back into the wild safely. There was no imminent danger there, and the three of them would be able to watch as the fox ran back into its natural habitat.
They Set Off To Release The Fox
Not only was the area a great spot to reintroduce the fox to its natural habitat, but it came with its own makeshift house! It was about a ten-minute walk from the docks and in a very remote location so that the fox would feel more at home.
So, the three fishermen got to it, making the walk and searching for the doghouse they knew to be located around the area.
The Fox Was Safe And Sound In Its New Home
With Cliff carrying the bin the entire way, the three friends finally found the doghouse. To their surprise, it was actually perfect! Very carefully, Cliff put the bin down, waiting to see what the fox would do next.
Slowly, it stepped out of the bin, shook itself clean of the sawdust, and went to inspect its new home. It was at that moment that Mallory, Cliff, and Allan knew that they had accomplished something incredible.