Saturday, April 30, 2011

Panorama from the ice

Last weekend I was out for a walk on the ice.  Here's a panorama looking back on the town.  You'll have to click it to see anything.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The metal dump

I like looking at the metal dumps in the communities I work in.  They're a little like museums, where all the old vehicles and appliances go to slowly rust away.

Not a bad view from this one either, eh?

Monday, April 25, 2011

Let there be light. Lotsa light.

Yesterday, April 24, was the first day when the sun doesn't set here in Grise Fiord.  It stays above the horizon for almost 4 months here.  We're at 76 degrees north.  Only 14 degrees from Santa!

Here's what it looked like just before midnight last night.  The landscape does go into shadow at night, as we're surrounded to the west and north by mountains, and the sun is low in the sky then.

This is looking north at the Co-op store:

This is looking southwest.  It's taken through a window so it messed with the colours a bit.

I love the 24 hour light (and indeed, we've had 24 hour light since I got here in early April).  It doesn't disrupt my sleep, I don't need foil on the windows or anything like many do.

It might be cold up here (highs still around -20), but at least I can inspect my fingers for frostbite in natural light, right around the clock!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Bright, white, and blue

I went for a walk yesterday morning in the brilliant April sunshine.  Here's a panorama of what Grise Fiord looks like now.  You'll have to click it if you want to see any detail.  There's an iceberg at the far left.  The south cape of Ellesmere Island is visible in the far distance.  The mountain called "The Greenlander" is right about at the middle of the photo, with the entrance to the fiord to the left of it.  The town is to the right of The Greenlander.

A couple more views, this one is of the town in the distance:

The entrance to the fiord between the two mountains:

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Resolute from the air

I forgot to post this photo I took when we were landing in Resolute back on April 6.  The town is in the background.  The shoreline of the bay curves up from where the fuel tanks are to the town.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Flight from Resolute to Grise Fiord

There was fantastic weather the day I flew over from Resolute to Grise Fiord.  I got lots of photos the whole way over, so I thought I'd share them with you.

Some friends have mentioned to me in the past that it's a shame I don't post maps so they can get an idea of where  these places are.  Well, here you go, here are a couple to show you where Grise Fiord and Resolute are.  These are Canada's most northerly communities, apart from the scientific station at Eureka, and the military base at Alert, which are both further north on Ellesmere Island.

Here's a closer-up view.  You cross Devon Island to get from Cornwallis Island to Ellesmere.  Baffin Island is to the southeast, off the map.

That's the twin otter that is making the flight.  We're waiting for the fuel truck to show up.

Some buildings on the apron at the Resolute airport.

View of the Resolute airport terminal on takeoff.

My facebook friends among you will recognize this photo of the interior of the plane.

The photo below is my seat.  You can see my carry-on stowed safely under the seat in front of me.  They are pretty casual with carry-on on these flights.  On my first flight to Grise Fiord, I sat beside a man who had a bunch of projectile-worthy vegetables in an open plastic crate sitting on his lap.  On this most recent flight I was the only one on the plane, so I could switch sides to take photos.

Photo quality is variable- dirt on the windows and the glare of the sun messes with the colours.  On most photos I increased the contrast so you could see the shape of the landscape more easily.

A river on Cornwallis Island, heading to the sea.  Looking southeast.

The same river draining out on the coast of Cornwallis Island.  Heading out over the frozen water now.

Here's the edge of Devon Island, looking out the northern side of the plane this time.

Some frozen rivers draining to the west.

The Devon Island river below is interesting- it has cliffs on most of it's oxbow bends:

Much of the surface of Devon Island looks like this:

Looking south, coming to the eastern edge of the northern portion of Devon Island (check the map up top, it's a big island), although first there is a fiord that we're passing over:

A river draining out into the mouth of the fiord:

Looking north at the coast of Devon Island (again, eastern edge of the northern lobe of the island):

We've crossed the fiord now, this is looking south again at the last lobe of land before we head out over Jones Sound.  I like that massive snow drift at the bottom of the land.  There must be a spit of land underneath it.

Frozen surface of Jones Sound:

Iceberg!  This one is huge.  It's frozen in the ice.  It's so far north that bergs don't have time to melt in one season, they get re-frozen into the ice every year.

First view of the southern edge of Ellesmere Island:

It's worth clicking on some of these to see them bigger, the landscape is really beautiful:

Coming up to the south cape of Ellesmere Island:

I don't know what the fiord at the south cape is called, but that's it to the right, around the corner of the cape:

Another massive iceberg:

A view into the last fiord before we come to Grise Fiord:

Coming up to Grise Fiord (the actual fiord, the community is to the east of it):

View up into Grise Fiord:

Same thing but a wider view:

This is the western edge of the fiord.  The first settlement of Grise Fiord was at the base of this mountain.  They were here for several years before they moved to the present town site.

Mountains to the east as we turn into our final approach:

I like these patterns in the ice at the shore:

Here's the eastern side of the hamlet of Grise Fiord:

Beautiful bustling downtown Grise Fiord, if I am quoting the Oprah show correctly.  I'll tell what all these buildings are in a future post:

Western part of town:

... and the airport terminal as we land.

Hope you enjoyed your flight!  I sure did.