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Royal Canadian Mounted Police Huts at Dundas Harbour, Devon Island


The huts to the left of the harbour are a Royal Canadian Mounted Police base that was set up in 1924 and manned until 1933 and then again from 1954 to 1961. It was built as Canada at the time was concerned about any threat to the sovereignty of its far Arctic north. A "We live here so this is ours" statement.

On this day it was very pleasant and warm in the sun despite the apparent low shade temperature. I found there was the over-riding question of how grim it must have been to live here however, the only way in is by air or sea, or possibly you could dog sled to Resolute in the winter over the frozen sea 200 miles away. The men (and women) who lived here spent up to three years here.

There is a small graveyard up the hill and out of sight of this picture that contained the four graves, one of a suicide, one of an accidental shooting while walrus hunting (self inflicted), one the baby of the daughter of a special constable who lived here and a one of a whaler. This knowledge doesn't make me feel any happier about the place and I think that brown weeping mountain behind it makes it quite creepy.

Air temp: +4º C Latitude: 74º 31' N Longitude: 82º 28' W

 

These are pictures from a cruise to the High Arctic in August 2010, from Resolute Bay Canada to Kangerlussuaq in Greenland.
Pictures copyright Paul Ward. Pentax digital equipment.

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