Thursday, August 30, 2001

Another Day in Inuvik, Northwest Territory!


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Had another nice day in Inuvik.  I spent the day in the area of the town, in the morning with Gordon and Arlene, and ending the day getting more familiar with the area.  I had great weather, and I could have worn shorts, but jeans help much with keeping the bugs off my legs.  There are quite a few black flies, though I am used to them from the ones in Maine.  At least they are not as bad as the flies along Lake Superior in Upper Michigan!

Morning started with breakfast at the main house of the B&B, hosted by the owners Olaf and Judi, where I met several other guests.  There were two staff members of the government agency, Environment Canada (something like that,) taking a short break from some of their assignments.  They visit remote monitoring stations in the Yukon and Northwest Territories gather data and samples for testing.  They had some intriguing stories to share about their experiences, and some of they places they visit.  Also at the table were two men preparing for a four day hunting venture on a remote island further north of the continent.  Arlene and Gordon were also present, and we made plans to spend part of the day in town together, until they had to catch their flight back to Toronto in the afternoon.  Olaf stopped by the breakfast table to describe some of his collection of obscure hunting paraphernalia and skins that were hanging in the room, plus shared some interesting stories.

After breakfast, Arlene, Gordon and I went into town, stopping by several stores, and trying to get a picture of Eskimos sitting in front of the Eskimo Inn.  We also stopped by the tour company for me to make arrangements for a trip to Tuktoyaktuk on Friday.  We worked out a plan to get an opportunity to see a few more things before their flight.  

We returned to the B&B, and after getting their luggage together, we took my car back into the city to see one more store and have lunch.  The store is part of a tribe organization that buys handicraft items from the artist, then sells them to the public at their cost, no mark up.  This allows more people to have access to creations by more artists, and without the extra expense of a retail store.  There were many beautiful carvings offered here as well as in other stores in the town.  Arlene was very much interested in buying a carving, and this place had one with a reasonable price.  They had other items we did not see elsewhere, and all were remarkable.  

Lunch was at a restaurant called ToGo, not to be confused with the chain in the states, which does not carry caribou!  This was followed by a trip to a park just south of town, which had an observation tower.  The views were great, and interpretive panels provided information, including the fact the the longitudinal location of Inuvik places it between Seattle and Hawaii!  

We proceeded to the Inuvik airport and Arlene and Gordon checked in while I did my usual look over of the airport.  It was fairly large compared to the town size, and was serviced by Air Canada, First Air, several small local airlines, and charters.  The field was in good condition, and I reminded myself that this town was part of the Dew Line created by the United States to monitor the USSR during the Cold War.  Very little evidence remains of the system.  

The three of us talked for a while as we waited for the plane to arrive.  We said our goodbyes when they left to board the flight, and I returned to the B&B to do a little reading.  This was followed by a trip to the MacKenzie Inn restaurant for their Prime Rib Thursday night.  Fortunately I had a reservation, and the dinner was good.  After dinner, I went back to a gas station where I saw a water sprayer for car washing, and cleaned much of the mud off the Camry.  It was a mess, and is in need of a real cleaning after I get off of these gravel/dirt roads!  

I returned to the B&B and met my cabin neighbor, Don Power, who invited me to a conversation with another couple from the B&B.  It was an interesting and enlightening evening, with varied topics, centering around the plight of Africa.  Both couples had been to Africa and shared notes, while I listened for most of the evening.  (Yes, I sat with my mouth shut!)

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The couple that ran the B&B also raised and worked sled dogs.  Arlene wanted to get a picture of her with a dog, so one of the lead dogs was brought out.


This is Arlene with the lead dog.


Gordon posing with the dog.

Gordon offered to take a picture of me with.  The dog was really cute and walked right into this position.

Gordon and I took the dog for a walk down the lane.  He was very powerful!

The Eskimo Inn in Inuvik.

This is a picture looking west towards the Mackenzie River delta from the observation tower south of Inuvik.

From the same tower, looking northwest.

The camping area in the park, with the town of Inuvik in the background.

While awaiting the flight, we visited a hangar to see if a friend of Gordon's was working today.  Unfortunately, he was not there.

This DC-3 was near the hangar.

Another aircraft on the ramp.

A Dash Twin Otter for the shorter runways.

There also was a helicopter on the ramp.

The airport restaurant, Cloud 9.

Arlene and Gordon heading for their flight.

Another aircraft near the terminal.

Aklak Air

This was the 737-200 Arlene and Gordon took on their first leg back home.

The Inuvik (YEV) traffic control tower.

The Inuvik Airport terminal.

The hangar for Aklak Air.

Main Street, Inuvik!

This is the famous Our Lady of Victory Catholic "Igloo" Church in Inuvik!

The Northern store building is a grocery store, department store, a Pizza Hut, and a Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant!  Get your Carhartts here!

This picture shows the "utilidors" which carry water in and sewage out of the buildings.  Most everything, including their utilities, is  above ground so as not to disturb or melt the permafrost.

A closer look at the utilidors.

Inuvik Auto

A boat seen along a road in town.

This is the community greenhouse where the locals have space to grow plants and vegetables.

Formerly part of the due line, this building is now a television station.

The row houses, or as Arlene and Gordon said, the "Smarties!"

The Alexander Mackenzie School.

In this picture, the main street is to the left, the igloo church is straight ahead, a community park just to the right, and the Mackenzie school to the right.

The Post Office is on the left, while straight is the Mackenzie Inn, home of the special Thursday night Prime Rib.

This is the Western Arctic Regional Visitor Centre.

I took a walk to the pond that borders the Arctic Chalet B&B.  These interesting plants were along side the short trail.

This is the pond I would canoe on he next evening.

I continued my walk by heading towards the Mackenzie River.  This was a pond along the road.

This is another view of the pond.

Part of the Mackenzie River.

Walking up the road that leads to the B&B I saw this interesting sky!

The Arctic Chalet B&B sign that is on the main road.



Tomorrow I am scheduled for a half day tour of Tuktoyaktuk at 1000, and I am anxious to get to the Arctic Ocean.  Should be a good day.  Thanks for visiting!


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Hotel: Arctic Chalet Bed and Breakfast -


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Copyright 2001 Igor N. Nikishin

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