James Raffan

Polar Plunge 2024

The annual Royal Canadian Geographical Society Polar Plunge is back!

This year we are joined by notable Canadians, adventurers, and RCGS Fellows. The #RCGSPolarPlunge will help the Society raise important funding for the rich storytelling and engaging interviews that take place under the banner of the Canadian Geographic Explore podcast.

Our goal is to raise $35,000! With your help we can continue to expand Canadians’ knowledge of our country’s diverse human and physical landscapes, better preparing them for an uncharted future.

Support the 2024 RCGS Polar Plunge!

My Achievements

Fundraising page

Updated Profile Pic

Added a Blog Post

Received 5 Donations

Reached Goal

Increased Target

My Updates

It's happening AND fundraising target met!!!!!

Wednesday 28th Feb
Hanging out here in Kugluktuk, NU with the Unipkaaqtuat (old stories from the land) Project, making music with youth and recording new music with Barney Bentall and other adventuresome musicians ... we've been scheming about how to pull of this semi-crazy Polar Plunge.  The good news is that Richard Akaana has just agreed to auger a bathtub in the sea ice today.  Joe and Susie Evyagotailak, our hosts, have also agreed to set up their ice fishing tent near the tub so that we'll have a place to expire quietly after the dip (seriously, it will be heated with a Coleman stove and should take the edge of the -35º to -40º ambient air temperatures.  The water, course--sea water--will be just a little bit colder than it was in Lac Sarazin in the Laurentian during our practise plunge a week or so ago. BUT ... THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU to all of you who have sponsored this venture and who have, collectively, managed us to reach the $2500 fundraising goal in aid of David McGuffin's remarkable Explore Podcast with the Royal Canadian Geographical Society.  Pix and deets to come.  But ... to all of you who have sponsored this crazy caper, you have warmed my heart with your kindness and generosity.

A 'Warm Up' Polar Plunge on Family Day

Tuesday 20th Feb
Inspired by the energy of Family Day in the Laurentians, we did a little practise plunge in preparation for heading north to Kugluktuk on Friday for the real thing.  Lots of fun for a great cause.  Love to have your support!

Creating Plungeable Water

Thursday 15th Feb
The last time I was fishing on the Coronation Gulf off Kugluktuk, we buried a 2m auger in the ice and barely cut though to open water.  Inspired by Jennifer Hubbard at CHARS in Cambridge Bay last year, I think the plan will be to use an auger to make a "bathtub" in the ice and then to poke one hole through to the seawater to fill it.  I guess time will tell.  Here's Jennifer (who challenged David McG to come up and plunge in Cambridge Bay but, we noticed, did not get her head and shoulders wet ... tsk, tsk)

Thank you to my Sponsors


Catherine Lawrence

Have FUN 😂😂


Gail Simmons

Just bring him back alive, ok? LOL


Seamus Mccastor

Ach, aye.


David Townley

Just like those CK Junior Section pre-flag raising dips. You are a brave man !


James And Brenda

You’re a brave man, Mr. Raffan!!


Matt & "heather Saunders



Barb Donaldson

Go Jim!


Moozie Cottage

Well done Jim - a wonderful commitment


Paul Mckay



Lynn Moorman

Thanks for making this happen!! Couldn’t imagine a better plunging pal!!


Tammy & Skot

Living vicariously through your adventures, Jim!


Ken Rose

A Polar Plunge…truly proving your dedication to the cause!


Andy Laing

Are Furtrader caps allowed?


Molly Raffan

You're a wild man, Dad! xo


Scott Carr

Enjoy your swim JR!



Well, you made it impossible :-)


Linda Vurma

You always make the best of every opportunity



I would normally say Stay Warm, but that would defeat the purpose, wouldn't it? Enjoy.



Keep all those limbs with your polar plunge!!


Paul Gervan

Oh alright!


Ann Balmer


Kevin Laporte

Love it!!


Donna Robinson

Stay safe, Jim.


Brian Macdonald



Victoria And Richard Grant


Ranjit Singh



better you than me!!


Jacob Rodenburg

You are brave!


Ted Van Geest


Paul Consitt


Ted Van Geest

Way to go James! You’re crazy but i still look forward to travelling with you some day again!


Keith Sly


Laurel Raffan

Go dad!


Dawn Negus

Too cool! (See what I did there?)


Lee And Debbie Erickson

Good Luck


Marie Olney

Brrrrrave JR!


Barb Stratton

Good luck! It look beautiful up there!


Ashley Basten

You are the king of adventure :)


Russ & Heather Musgrove

Be sure and wear your BTU's James.


Paul Gallina

Bravery beyond in this frosty dip James, the last time I went ice diving (wetsuit) the air temp was -15C. Lots of hot chocolate after. Cheers.


Madeleine Hague

Best wishes for this adventure!


Kathryn Dingle

Way to go, James! Always a fan of your mischief and good works.


Helen Hartley