Friday, August 23, 2013

Batten Down the Hatches!

And I quote:
Tonight, 23 August
Cloudy. 30 percent chance of rain showers early this evening. Snow mixed with rain beginning this evening. Snowfall amount 5 cm. Blowing snow with visibilities at times less than 2 kilometres overnight. Wind west 60 km/h gusting to 90. Low minus 1.
Saturday, 24 August
Cloudy. 30 percent chance of flurries early in the morning. Wind northwest 50 km/h gusting to 70 diminishing to 30 gusting to 50 in the afternoon. High plus 2.
Does Mother Nature know that it's only August 23rd?!  I think someone should have a talk with her.  As I type this entry the ground is turning white, the wind is howling and the water in my toilet is looking like the movie The Perfect Storm.  I finally gave in and turned on the heat tonight as Miss Molly was trying to crawl under the blankets and my fingers were having a difficult time typing as they were so cold.  Minus 1 isn't so bad but when you add 90kms winds and snow it's like a mini blizzard...and not the Dairy Queen kind.
After work today the dogs and I headed to the bay to take some pictures and then met Craig by the ocean to check out the huge waves happening on the Northwest Passage. 
Series of three pics as the waves pound the rock on the bay 
Large ship in the background is the Canadian Coast Guard, Sir Wilfred Laurier

Our pier getting battered today

Nunavut Flag on the shores of the Arctic Ocean/Northwest Passage

Waves were extremely large

I could of stayed out there all evening long to watch the waves pound the rocky shore but with the wind and waves came the snow...yup snow in August!  So off we went back home - in a blizzard.
Blowing snow on the road on the way home

Snow starting to cover our yard - poor little bird

That's one of my bird feeders that Craig had to take down before it flew away

We can usually see the water from this view but not tonight
The past couple of weeks we have seen our first cruise ship and barge arrive in the Bay and the Canadian Coast Guard and these explorers that are travelling through the Northwest Passage on their personal water crafts. I do not know much about these adventurers but their website is:
Personal fishing boat in foreground, Martin Bergmann in the middle (blue) and the barge behind

The other side of the barge

The first barge leaving

Cruise ship

Dangerous Waters adventurers

Diamonds in the Ruff, the rescue that I am involved with, had raised enough funds to have a Cambridge Bay Vet Clinic last week.  The vet team arrived on Tuesday from Alberta and started their busy schedule the following morning at 8am and ended many evenings past 8pm.  They probably could of stayed a week and still had people waiting.  They performed over 20 surgeries a day and many check ups and vaccines, we do not have the final numbers yet.  Diamonds in the Ruff hope is to raise enough funds again for them to return next year for another clinic. It was a pleasure meeting this fine bunch of animal lovers and I hope to see them again.
I had the pleasure of volunteering all day last Friday and both Mocha and Blitz had surgery that day.  Mocha who is about 16 had a suspicious lump removed and we found out that she was in kidney failure.  I will wait for the pathology report and we will live each day one at a time.  Blitz had two of his feet 'fixed' as he tore his webbing so now he is stitched up and wearing the Cone of Shame...poor guy.  Or should I say poor us as I think we have bruises on the back of our legs from him bumping us with that cone.  One more week and I will remove the sutures and hopefully the cone.  Blitz was very worried about his cat for the first couple of days home and would lay beside her on the floor.
The core group: Susan, Connie, Lucy and Audrey

Leaving the Bay to head to Kugluktuk for a clinic

A few pics of the patients and owners

Blitz was so concerned about Mocha

Not liking the cone much - nice lips! haha

Even my Hannah looked after Mocha, or she just wanted her orthopedic bed.  Mocha has an infection from licking so now I wrap her up after applying antibiotic cream and she is also on Amoxicillin.
Talk soon!


Tuesday, August 13, 2013

30 Mile - One Bad Ass Camp

Stephane and I try to go to all of the fishing camps either prior to or during our fish harvest.  Yesterday we flew to 30 Mile to have a look at the camp and to visit with Les, JS and the crew.  Fred, our pilot for the day, met us at the float base at 11:30 and after fueling up we were flying to 30 Mile, one of my favorite spots.  It was a bit hazy due to the fires down south but we couldn't have asked for better weather, sitting at about +22'c. I never get tired of seeing this vast beautiful land from the plane and seeing the blue Arctic ocean is just as amazing. Below are some pictures from the plane.
Fred fueling up

Taking off with a view of Cambridge Bay

Our airport from the skies

North Warning System Site - where Craig works

This is a road that we travel on many times with our 4 wheelers.
The next few pictures are of some of the rivers that flow into the Northwest Passage and some that we cross on our way to Starvation Cove by quad.

Coming to the point of Starvation Cove

Starvation Cove from the air - very hazy day

This is a large piece of land that looked like it was cultivated

Are we in the Arctic or the Caribbean?

Seen only one herd of muskox on the way there

30 Mile camp from the skies
As we got close to camp Fred make a couple of turns so that we could see and take pictures of the fishing weir.  A weir is trap that is built across a river to capture the fish as they swim up stream. It is a traditional way of fishing that causing very little stress on the fish which equal better quality of fish. The next couple of pictures show the weir from a bird's eye view.
Once landed we were met by the crew of Les, JS, Chris, Meyok and Jonathan which treated us with a cup of tea and cookies. In exchange we brought them some char candy and cold smoke fish.  It was absolutely gorgeous day to be out there.
Camp Bad Ass from the plane

Fred and Les pulling in the plane

Oh Petra - look what the guys found on the land!

Here's the reason why I love 30 Mile

The Bad Ass Crew: Jonathan, Les, JS, Meyok and Chris
I had the pleasure of seeing the weir up close and personal, my buddy Les took me for a small boat ride to where it was set up.  If I had some hip waders on I could of walked across but I only had my rubber boots on so off we went in the boat.  The guys demonstrated how they tagged fish  and explained how the weir works.  It is amazing how fast they are at tagging and releasing the fish back into the holding area.  The following pics are of my boat ride, the weir and them tagging.
Here's a B & W of the shoreline and how close Les had to drive the boat to it as the middle of the river was too shallow

Another B & W of Les pulling me to shore

Arctic char drying

The weir with the holding tanks

JS checking the weir

Les checking the char- check out the cool flag that JS made

New holding area for the fish

Another view of the weir

Bringing in a char for tagging

Recording the measurements the char

JS tagging the char

Les, JS and Chris making a channel for the char, from the holding area to the river

Channel completed

View of the camp on the way back

Very close to the shore
We spent a couple of hours at the camp and I would of loved to spend more time there but Fred had another flight booked so we needed to head back to Cambridge Bay. Below are some more pics from the skies.

Can you see the cabin in the middle?

On the home front the weather has been extremely warm up here hitting close to the mid 20'c with no rain.  It is suppose to cool down by Friday which is good for the fish run but I personally would like the hot weather to stay just a wee bit longer.  Blitz's cut pad is finally healed and on Saturday I took them out for a swim to beat the heat and he sliced his webbing open...on the same foot that is just healed!!!  I have never had a dog that was so rough on his feet.  It is healing fast so hopefully we can go for more swims before it becomes too cold and the ice forms on the ponds. 
Blitz pointing at some Arctic swans

His cut webbing

Blitz resting after his injury

Hannah soaking in the sun after her swim

Molly 'yelling' at me to come in the water

Hannah hitting the water
It's going be a busy week for me, yesterday I worked in the morning then flew out to 30 Mile then in the evening we attended a meeting in regards to the health of muskox and their decline on Victoria Island.  Kitikmeot Foods have been working with a team from U of Calgary for many years now and they are up here again this summer to collect samples of muskox.  It was a very informative meeting and it was nice to see the team again.  Today the vet team arrives from Alberta,  that Diamonds in the Ruff (the rescue that I am involved with) raised funds for in CamBay. They are holding a vet clinic here for the next 3 days.  I will be helping out when I can and also our cat Mocha is getting a lump removed.  I am a bit concerned about this lump as it is hard and it surrounds one of her nipples, plus she had one removed before and it was positive for cancer.  Please keep her in your thoughts this Friday afternoon as the old girl (16) goes under the knife to have it removed.
After the meeting last night the sun was setting and it looked amazing so we headed home to grab the Nikon and the dogs then went for a drive behind the Dew Line. Even with warm weather the colours of plants are starting to change from green to red.   Below are some pictures of the plants and of the sunset from yesterday, which by the way sets around 10:10pm and rises about 4:00 in the morning.

Talk soon!