Welcome to Iqaluit
IQALUIT, NUNAVUT TERRITORY, CANADA—Nestled on the shore of Frobisher Bay and astride the Sylvia Grinnell River, Iqaluit is dominated by water, though most of it is still frozen as snow and ice at this time of year. The granite hills were carved and scoured by the final retreat of the Laurentide Ice Sheet as the last ice age ended, and the landscapes around those hills were filled with the “glacial till” of silt, sand, and clay that fell out of the melting glaciers.
Even after the ice sheets moved back toward the North Pole and Greenland, the icy winds and weak, low-hanging sun have traditionally kept temperatures below freezing for most of each year. The culture of the Inuit people, who have inhabited the region for centuries, was built up around the harsh environment and how to survive in it.
But Iqaluit seems to be changing, thawing, and melting with each passing year. The snow and ice doesn’t last like it used to, say the residents of this capital of the Canadian Arctic, and the land is changing. Modern times are bringing changes for the people, too. Iqaluit seems like a town full of contradictions, changes, and opposites. (See our travel map)
Read on about our adventure in the slideshow below. Can't see the slideshow? Get the Flash plug in »