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2015 Summer Arctic Trip

August 9th


Blog post from August 9th:

I awoke this morning to the smell of sizzling bacon wafting through my tent. As I slowly made my way to the cozy kitchen, the cool rays of the Arctic sun glinted on the shallow lake that lies right outside the cage I have quickly adopted as my "home sweet home." The kitchen was filled with the clinking of coffee cups and the low murmur of early morning data entry -- familiar sounds to my already dirt-encrusted ears. 

After finishing up my breakfast of warm and fluffy pancakes doused in maple syrup, I got myself ready for a long day on the tundra. We began our first long walk to the site, encountering many caribou on the way. Along our route, we stopped from time to time to rest our feet and backs, drink plenty of water, and best of all, learn about the historical and scientific significance of our surroundings. Our resident Churchillian, Park Canada representative, and bear monitor, Jill Larkin, pointed out many things on the landscape, such as hunting blinds and camp sites that were used by aboriginal groups hundreds of years ago. 

After walking 4 kilometers, we finally made it to our site and were able to get to work. The cold winds that caused even the probers to shiver were combated by a warm meal of MREsand piping hot dwarf labrador tea made from one of the plants we encountered while collecting data, Ledum decumbens. 

Once we finished our transects, we collected our gear and continued our hike, ending at the icy blue waters of the Hudson Bay. We relaxed and enjoyed the view for a while before we made our returning trip back to Nester 1.

-Leanna Gitter, Park School grade 12