This Man Drives a Modified Subaru in the Arctic to Make Amateur Radio Contact
Gabriel Zeifman enjoys traveling to unpopulated locations and putting them on the air.
Yellowknife. Wrigley. Tuktoyaktuk. These locations in the Yukon and Northwest Territories may sound familiar if you watch Ice Road Truckers. The roads to get there are unpopulated and extremely treacherous. Typically only the truck drivers use them. But Gabriel Zeifman travels to these remote places for a different reason: to make radio contacts around the world.
Zeifman is an amateur radio operator who enjoys contacting faraway places through satellites that relay his signal vast distances. Others love contacting him as well because Zeifman puts remote locations on the air that are otherwise impossible to reach due to their low or non-existent population.
Zeifman's vehicle of choice for this arduous task is his Subaru XV Crosstrek. Surprisingly, the car has no modifications for the harsh environment of the Arctic besides an engine block heater, which he has never used. His other equipment includes tire chains, but he says he has never needed them. His other equipment includes an extra ten gallons of gas, first aid kits, food, water, stoves, sleeping bags, winter weather gear, and emergency satellite beacons in case he finds himself in trouble. Zeifman also carries carbon monoxide detectors to wake him up while sleeping in the car while he leaves it running, both to heat the interior and to prevent the engine from freezing in sub-zero temperatures.
A highly modified Subaru XV Crosstrek just competed in the Baja 500, but a stock version taking the Arctic in stride is a testament to the Subaru's durability. Zeifman isn't done with his Arctic adventures. He says he would like to activate the province of Nunavut on the amateur radio bands, as well as drive up the James Bay Road in Quebec and canoe to one of the remote islands in the bay. Zeifman is currently training to be an air traffic controller and hopes to get assigned to Alaska for access to even more remote areas there and in northern Canada.