Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Landed Safely

We landed back in Cambridge Bay last Tuesday but not without some excitement.  We were about 10 minutes out of Yellowknife and I was just dozing off to get some shut eye and all of a sudden there was a huge bang and then silence a couple of seconds later.  No one screamed or panicked and the flight attendants never said anything. Craig and I noticed that the plane was not going any higher and was turning around and within no time the pilot was on the intercom.  He stated very calmly that they had to shut down engine #2 and that we were heading back to Yellowknife.  Landing was a bit touchy as you can imagine landing with only one engine but the pilot and co-pilot did a great job with landing as smoothly as they could.  We were met by a couple of fire engines and after the firemen checked the plane we taxied back to the airport. 
The management of First Air met the 6 of us at the gate to make sure we were all OK.  At this point no one was sure if we were going to switch planes or stay in Yellowknife for the night and get on a plane the following day.  First Air did a great job in making sure we were all taken care of with vouchers for food and to apply to our next flight.  I was a bit worried about our dogs and they made sure that once it was safe the crew arranged for all three to come into the terminal.  Lucky for us First Air arranged for us to leave a few hours later and I can't say enough how well the team at First Air looked after their two and four legged passengers.
Here are a couple of pictures of the escort that we received on the runway - not great pictures as it was taken with my Blackberry.
Here come the rescue trucks

Plane stopped and waited for the firemen to make sure everything is clear

Landed safely in Yellowknife

We left Manitoba with temperatures sitting at or close to +20'c to a high about -5'c here in Cambridge Bay.  Even though I felt the colder temperatures we are still above normal for this time of year, temperatures usually sit on average of -11'c. Besides the temperatures I really noticed the daylight hours are becoming less and less.  The sun rose today at 8:38am and the sun set was at 54:52pm and soon we will experience 24 darkness for about 6 weeks.  The bay is starting to freeze but there is still open water on it and on the Northwest Passage.

Ice starting to form on the Bay

Only a small open area left on Freshwater Creek

More ice forming on the Bay

The old Northern dock

Large waves brought the ice to the shore yesterday

Sunset on the bay yesterday

The community received confirmation from our mayor that the Loran Tower will be demolished this year.  Here is her message to the community:

"Nav Canada explained that the Loran Tower is structurally unsound and it is unsafe in its current state, therefore, they are going to demolish the tower by the end of October 2013. They fear is that if there is a heavy snow fall or high winds the tower may collapse and cause considerable damage or injury to people or property nearby. They estimates that it would cost in excess of one million dollars to make the old tower structurally sound.

A replacement tower will be erected in the exact same spot and that should be completed by the end of November 2014. The new tower will be 160 feet high, with a flashing beacon on top which will be visible from a considerable distance and will serve as a navigational aid for people travelling on the land."

The Loran Tower is 620 feet tall and was built as a free standing lattice tower in 1947/48 for the Loran transmissions.  It will be sad to see it demolished but for the safety of the community it has to be destroyed. 

Loran Tower at Cambridge Bay

With temperatures dropping the Shorthairs are becoming more and more cuddly.  There isn't a moment where you wake up during the night and not have either Molly or Blitz or both snuggled beside you.  I'm seriously thinking that a king sized bed should be in our future.  Since Hannah has been on her new medication for her focal seizures I can count on one hand how many she has had in the past couple of weeks.  She is drinking more and today she had an accident in the hallway....thankfully we have a steam cleaner (another reason why I hate carpet). Her Hock Socks are back on as she is stumbling more these days and was doing a bit of damage to her hocks.  These were another great investment.
This is what they looked like after breakfast and potty break this morning.

Talk soon!

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