"Iglulik, Nunavut Canada - North of 69" Igloolik by kemptonjones

Igloolik Travel Guide: 0 reviews and 6 photos

North of '69 - Land of the Long Day - My Diary

In the 1950's, the eastern High Arctic of Canada became my home during employment with Canadian Marconi Special Services Division on the DEWline, a massive (inter) national defence project traversing the Canadian High Arctic
As one of several Air Traffic and Marine Advisors, my experience and travel was within the Eastern Sector DEW radar site locations of Baffin Region, including Foxe Basin, Southampton Island and Labrador.
The Hamlet of Iglulik, NWT (now Nunavut) north of the Arctic Circle on an island located off Melville Peninsula in Foxe Basin, was my home until 1981.
This favourite photo was taken north of the Arctic Circle on the west coast of Foxe Basin at Hall Beach, FOX Base - Site 30 Main of the DEWline, some 60 miles south of Iglulik.
Walrus hunters had landed their sailing vessel at Hall Beach to trade carvings crafted from walrus ivory for fresh provisions. The hunters were exhausted after days of hunting and sailing at sea in Foxe Basin.
Moments after their landing, I recall this young boy as the only crew member able to stand erect and keep watch. Years later, in fact just this year (2012) and now an adult, this young boy connected with me on Facebook so that Johnny, who now works as a Polar Bear Monitor, and has joined with me to renew our friendship.

Home from the floe edge

There are still those Iglulik hunters and trappers who prefer traditional Inuit ways out on the sea ice for polar bear, walrus and seals and out on the frozen tundra to hunt caribou and tend their traplines for arctic fox. Dressed warmly in caribou clothing, they rely on their dog teams travelling to and from the floe edge of Foxe Basin, while others use a motorized snow sled, commonly called "Ski-Doo" to pull their dogsled.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Strong traditional way of Inuit life
  • Cons:Invasion of Euro-Canadian cuture
  • In a nutshell:The Iglulik I once knew will forever remain in my heart
  • Intro Updated Oct 14, 2012
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Comments (2)

  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo
    Feb 1, 2009 at 12:45 PM

    Michael, thanks for this amazing look into the past with your fantastic photos of life in the Arctic as it used to be! You've led an interesting life. Take a look at my small 'Netherhill' Sask. page for my take on the DEW Line!

  • Braveheart.southafrr's Profile Photo
    Aug 25, 2003 at 2:05 PM

    great info on the hunters michael .......thanks ken

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