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04 January 2015

Yukon and Alaska Bound, Part 19. Inuvik - Life Above the Arctic Circle.


Inuvik - Life in the Arctic


6th of July 2014

Our Cottage at Arctic Chalets

Inside cottage
We enjoyed a leisurely morning at our temporary home at the Arctic Chalet in Inuvik, Northwest Territories.



It was nice to laze around after our eventful tour yesterday to Tuktoyaktuk.



We decided to spend the day just walking and driving around Inuvik.



This town has an interesting beginning. In the 1950 the Canadian Government decided to built this brand new town to replace Aklavik on the Peel River, which was prone to flood and had unstable homes.



Inuvik was built from scratch on pilings above the permafrost.





All the services for fresh water and sewer are above ground in "Utilidors". Utilidors are conduits covered by corrugated steel, connected to most buildings and homes.

Inuvik Northwest Territories. The Western Arctic

Utilidors where sewer and water goes.

Utilidors

Utilidors
In the 1970's oil and Natural Gas was discovered up here. Unfortunately with the collapse of the oil prices in the mid 1980's and the closure of the Canadian Armed Forces Base in 1985, the economy suffered gravely. Some of the ugly remains of the boom time are still littering the Inuvik landscape.

All houses are on pilings.

Inuvik

Inuvik Hospital

Old hockey arena converted to a green house.

There are good chances for the locals to further their education.
Today, the community has high hopes for economic benefits with the construction of the 137 kilometer all-weather-road from Inuvik to Tuk (Tuktoyaktuk).


Talking to the locals, we heard mixed reactions to the project.


The challenge to build a permanent road over the arctic landscape is immense with the permafrost, the tundra, the Mackenzie River delta, and the extreme weather conditions.


The traditions of the Inuvialut, Gwich'in and Metis people are mixed in with today's daily life.


The old hockey arena with the glass roof is being reborn as the huge communal greenhouse with garden plots for individual families.


The local Aurora College gives the approximate 3500 people of Inuvik opportunities the further their education.


Tourism is still in its infancy. The local hotels looked lonely.


One hopes for the economy to improve for Inuvik, but on the other hand it is nice to still find a few old customs and traditional people here above the Arctic Circle.


For more pictures from in and around Inuvik have a look at our "Inuvik Album".








































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