Temperatures are around -20°C, it is spring in Grise Fiord! The weather is often nice, so not only hunters but also families are going out of town to enjoy more long days on the ice. The daylight is now permanent, and that's when the lights are the most beautiful that one's need to go to bed... school starts in the morning!
A new icemeter (EM31) and a new CTD arrived a few days ago, sent by Christian Haas and Humfrey Melling, for who we have been working since summer 2011. All conditions are now good to collect data, already 350km ice profile (thickness from 50 to 200cm) and 8 hydrographic surveys in neighbouring fjords (Starnes, Fram, Grise). A good excuse to visit the area and a real relief after several attempts and disappointments. I have also checked the ice thickness to the old village, before the passage of a grader to make an ice road!
Thursday night, I slept in a nice cabin belonging to a very handy hunter. This weekend, France was able to join me and we pitched our tent on the ice. Joanne, nurse, the only French speaking person in the village, was again offering to have for one night our two little girls, blissful! On Easter Sunday, between the Good Friday feast, the egg hunts and other Easter games (harpoon through, seal skins slides...), France and I were delighted to camp on a beach, despite the -28°C. While others took advantage of the long weekend to hunt caribou, seal pup, bear, Arctic char, ptarmigan, musk ox, with success; walrus, narwhal and beluga in vain. Success and satisfaction too for the first two foreign hunters (eight expected this spring), which each had a bear and a musk ox. In Nunavut, this sport hunting is an important economic contribution and perpetuates certain traditions: it must be done with dogs (snowmobile used only to transport the camp), who need to be fed on seals throughout the year. Without sport hunting, there would be far fewer dogs in Grise Fiord, in favour of snowmobiles.
The first seals are out of the water, they have expanded their breathing hole and just sunbathe on the ice.