Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada

Our ship anchored in Feacham Bay off Buchan Gulf, further north on Baffin Island, Canada, from our prior anchorage in San Ford Fjord -- Buchan Gulf, surrounded by tall, weather-worn cliffs

Our ship anchored in Feacham Bay off Buchan Gulf, further north on Baffin Island, Canada, from our prior anchorage in San Ford Fjord — Buchan Gulf, surrounded by tall, weather-worn cliffs, is about 200 kilometers (120 miles) south of the Inuit settlement town of Pond Inlet

 

From San Ford Fjord on Baffin Island, we sailed north overnight and the next morning we anchored in Feacham Bay off Buchan Gulf, further north on Baffin Island, Canada.  Buchan Gulf, surrounded by tall, weather-worn cliffs, is about 200 kilometers (120 miles) south of the Inuit settlement town of Pond Inlet [see an upcoming blog].  The Feacham Bay area, where we went ashore, was home to a small community of Thule natives (ancestors of all modern Inuit) around 500 years ago, with the remains of three semi-subterranean round homes built in the traditional Thule style still remaining above the beach.  The tundra was very rich in flora, but all plants were quite small and low to the ground in order to survive in the harsh and strong winds as well as the 8-9 months of snow and ice on the ground.

 

The beach where we did a Zodiac landing for a hike was strewn with debris left from settlements and short-term summer stays, Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada

The beach where we did a Zodiac landing for a hike was strewn with debris left from settlements and short-term summer stays, Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada

 

The remains of a large canoe that supported two outboard motors (indicating it was from the 20th century) on the beach at Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada; the “carcass” looks like a fish skeleton

The remains of a large canoe that supported two outboard motors (indicating it was from the 20th century) on the beach at Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada; the “carcass” looks like a fish skeleton

 

The dugout remains and stone walls of one of three Thule semi-subterranean round homes built in the traditional Thule style still remaining on the beach; our naturalist told us they are about 500 years old, and still in good condition

The dugout remains and stone walls of one of three Thule semi-subterranean round homes built in the traditional Thule style still remaining on the beach; our naturalist told us they are about 500 years old, and still in good condition; Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada

 

Our coastal hike took us over varied terrain, with the hillside littered with large stones dragged down by glaciers (moraine) and below that tundra and bogs and pools of water that were difficult to walk through; Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf

Our coastal hike took us over varied terrain, with the hillside littered with large stones dragged down by glaciers (moraine) and below that tundra and bogs and pools of water that were difficult to walk through; Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada

 

So called “Arctic cotton” plants (Eriophorum callitrix) were scattered over the tundra; according to our Inuit guide, the “cotton”, one of the most widespread flowering plants in the northern tundra regions, was picked by Inuits to use as wicks

So called “Arctic cotton” plants (Eriophorum callitrix) were scattered over the tundra; according to our Inuit guide, the “cotton”, one of the most widespread flowering plants in the northern tundra regions, was picked by Inuits to use as wicks in whale and seal oil lamps for light in their homes; Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada

 

A dwarf Arctic tundra willow tree (yes, the bush pictured is a tree!), which grows close to the ground (tundra) and normally spreads laterally, rather than vertically, due to the high Arctic winds

A dwarf Arctic tundra willow tree (yes, the bush pictured is a tree!), which grows close to the ground (tundra) and normally spreads laterally, rather than vertically, due to the high Arctic winds; our naturalist said this tree, growing in the lee shelter of the large boulder, is the largest he has seen on Baffin Island; Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada

 

Wild mushrooms growing in the moist tundra; our Inuit guide says almost all tundra mushrooms are eaten by the Inuit; Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada

Wild mushrooms growing in the moist tundra; our Inuit guide says almost all tundra mushrooms are eaten by the Inuit; Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada

 

This wetland bog, with beautiful mosses, was one of many that we had to walk around on our hike through the tundra below the solid ground and stone moraine of the higher grounl; Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada

This wetland bog, with beautiful mosses, was one of many that we had to walk around on our hike through the tundra below the solid ground and stone moraine of the higher grounl; Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada

 

These wild blueberries were almost at the peak of flavor just before the end of the brief summer season; our Inuit guide noted that they are picked and eaten by the Inuit who savor the fresh berries for just a short period each year

These wild blueberries, growing on the tundra, were almost at the peak of flavor just before the end of the brief summer season; our Inuit guide noted that they are picked and eaten by the Inuit who savor the fresh berries for just a short period each year; Feacham Bay, Buchan Gulf, Baffin Island, Canada

 

Legal Notices: All photographs copyright © 2019 by Richard C. Edwards. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.  Permission to link to this blog post is granted for educational and non-commercial purposes only.

 

 

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