2018 Fall Arctic trip

NOVEMBER 3, 2018

Welcome to the Whisker Printing blog for 2018! From the perspective of the Baltimore and Winnipeg group our day first began at 5am. We, students from Winnipeg and Baltimore first met at the Winnipeg airport. Soon after introductions were made, we checked our bags in and headed to the exclusive and fancy lounge, that was provided to us, thanks to the father of one of our fellow ISAMR members. After lounging around and having a fantastic breakfast it was finally time to go and catch our flight at 7am. To our surprise, the plane that we were meant to board wasn't there. As surprised as we were, we kept our cool and asked for information on where our plane was and what the situation was, imagine how we felt when we found out that the plane wasn’t even in Winnipeg. Yet, like the brave ISAMR members we are, we kept our heads up and waited for our plane that was delayed to 9am. Slowly 9am arrived, no plane in sight, again we were surprised but kept our heads up, our flight was then delayed to 1pm, the airline very kindly, gave us lunch vouchers. We all decided to go and get some lunch after a while and tried to manage our time wisely. In the time we had, a small group of us decided to do yoga and dance while we waited, to help us find the zen that we were slowly losing. 1’oclock slowly rolled around and still, the savior, known as our plane had not shown up. Again we politely asked for information on our flight and found out that our plane was here but had mechanical issues so they had sent another but that plane had mechanical issues as well and the airline was waiting for the next one to arrive. Julie, one of the Baltimore leaders had the brilliant idea to play a group game, a variation of charades, that lead to more bonding, lots of laughs and a lot of zen. Finally around 3’oclock, our savior, the plane, had arrived!! Everyone was filled with joy and were eager to get on the plane that would lead us to the place we were so anxious to see and the people we were so excited to meet. Finally the plane is ready for take off, and there we go, after 8hrs of waiting, we were off!!!!

Meanwhile, in Churchill, us Junior Rangers were ready to meet the Winnipeg and Baltimore students at 9:030 am, but the flight got delayed, many times. Finally, we got anxious so our leader got us together and we decided to head over to dog sledding to wait for our soon to be ISAMR friends at 4:00 pm. They we so delayed, we decided to go dog sledding and make a fire and eat dinner. Finally, the Winnipeg and Baltimore students arrived. We met each other at the dog yard. It was dark when they arrived at 6:30 pm. They started dog sledding and all the JCRs were playing games like ninja, tag, etc. Then after we were all done dog sledding, we all went together to the CNSC to check in and meet our roommates for the rest of the trip. We then quickly unpacked and went to the classroom where we had a lecture from Dr. Jane Waterman, even though, everyone was so tired. But, we learned about whisker printing, body condition, and other stuff that we were to put into action on the tundra buggy. We then went to sleep and dreamed about polar bears or not, if you were too tired.

- Bridget (Kelvin High School) and Brindi (Junior Canadian Ranger of Churchill)

NOVEMBER 4, 2018

We got up ate 7:00 and ate breakfast then prepped for the day. We met in the class at 7:30 where discussed the plan for the day. We left on a short bus ride, then we boarded the buggy. we seen our first bear Asteroid about an hour in. Then the bears started appearing the farer away we got from the station. At one point a bear named Comet came right up to the buggy which made it really easy to do whisker printing. in comparison the bear was an ant compared to the buggy. After seven hours on the buggy we had to turn around to make it back by 4:00pm. On the way back we found out the floor was the most comfortable spot to sit. when we got we ate dinner and started data analysis. when we finished sorting the photos we got a presentation from Jill about the junior Canadian rangers. then we went to bed.

- Terence Palmer Jcr & Ahmed Zalam Khs

NOVEMBER 5, 2018

Today was our second day on the tundra buggy. As was the case yesterday, started the day off with a good breakfast at around 7:00 AM, which was easier to get up for the second time around. Then we waited for our bus to come and take us to the tundra buggy station, where a slightly less crowded buggy was waiting for us. When we boarded the buggy, it took a while to find our first bears of the day, but we ended up coming across nearly as many as yesterday. We took a break for lunch while waiting for one bear to take their head out of the snow, but other than that there was not much space between observations, which made for a pretty exciting day. We made it through our first alphabetical list of bear names and were started on the second by the time we were heading back, around four in the afternoon. Now that our field research is completed, we will begin analysis of our pictures to collect data and prepare for Arctic Net!

- Kayla (Kelvin High School) and Tamara (Junior Canadian Rangers)

NOVEMBER 6, 2018

Today we did a variety of things, since it was our day off of the tundra buggy. We spent the morning packing up our stuff to check out of our rooms in the CNSC. We then went on a short tundra walk outside, where we were able to check out the rocket ranges in the surrounding area. After that, we spent a little bit of time analyzing our data from the previous two days, as well as organizing the pictures that we had taken. After a quick lunch at the CNSC, we were able to listen to a presentation about the Sayisi Dene people and their history, culture, and ways of life. The presentation was given by a member of the Sayisi Dene named Florence, who offered a very interesting perspective of the culture that she had been born into. After the presentation, we had around an hour to walk around Churchill in groups, and explore the area. After meeting in the Eskimo Museum at 3:30, we took a quick bus ride to Cape Merry, which gave us a beautiful view of the area where the Churchill River meets the Hudson Bay. We unfortunately couldn’t stay very long, as a polar bear had come through the area 20 minutes before and we had to stay on high alert. After the quick tour of the Cape, we went back to the town complex in Churchill, where we all spent around four hours waiting to go to the airport. It was a nice way to end the day, as it gave us all a chance to decompress and socialize. I (Jake) got a chance to practice my ice-skating skills, which have proved to be in their process of developing (as evidenced by my sore butt from falling twice). Nevertheless, the experience was very enjoyable. Finally, around 11:00 Churchill time, we boarded our plane and flew to Winnipeg, where the kids from Kelvin and Park said goodbye.

- Jake, Park School


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