Saturday, March 31, 2007

Wither the Weather.

Some folks may get tired of the oft reference to weather here. Alas, when living in remote a community with still strong relationships with the land it is just not possible for it not to be at the fore of most conversations and thoughts. Plus the fact of not being connected by road to any other community all ads up to having to take notice of what is being sent your way.

Take this week, please take it. No really, it was not that bad here, but the weather did have an impact never the less. There were two groups of people scheduled to arrive and hold meeting or information sessions of one kind or another. None arrived because weather south of here was fairly bad with wind and snow.
One group was stuck in Makkovik, another in Hopedale. Both returned back to GB yesterday. The one meeting that did get underway the past Monday had people from other coastal communities stuck here in Nain until yesterday.
Over the past few months has seen sevaral other postponements and cancellations of meetings and such, seems higher than usual, but that is just my gut feeling.
It must play havoc with organizers, travel people, accommodations, but one has to take it in stride.
Not so for many from outside who experience Labrador for the first time. It’s hard to convince some that because the weather in fine in such and such a place that the plane can’t fly because it’s down flat in another place. Many from away cant around the fact that we don’t have airport control towers with instrument landing and radar facilities. Just not very observant I guess.

I hear than some people have been going up inside Hebron of late to do some ice fishing and hunting. I’m told the partridge are like clouds of snow birds up there.
It’s quite the trip over bay sea ice, steep climbs and long winding brooks. About 12 hours in good going should get you there.

The map shows Hebron’s location in relation to Nain. None of the travel is outside any of the islands, not very safe around some of those capes.

Traveling that distance is now some what safer with many people having satellite phones and even GPS systems that work off their snow machines. Usually one in a group will have one or both. But there still is people who rely on there instincts and experience only.

It is one magnificent awesome terrain up there in both summer and winter. I just hope that some people don’t become overly complacent because it can turn in an instant into one nightmarish and some times deadly place too.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Filched in the Antipodes.

It’s a long shot that anything will come of this but as they say, nothing ventured nothing gained. I’ll try and make it as short as possible.

Late last year we had a series telephone and e mail exchanges with a friend [lets call him NN] down in the states. NN was to attend a series of social and cultural conferences down in New Zealand’s North Island, mainly within the Maori Community.
At the Maori gatherings it is customary to exchange gifts, so NN asked for some input as to availability and appropriateness of gifts. NN learnt that for the gifts to have real meaning they would not be ones that are purchased at places like the airport duty free shop or the like. It was more appropriate if the gifts came from the creator of these gifts, or as close as possible.
So we came up with several small crafts that Fran had made, and one larger craft that had been in our possession for many years, but thought it to be an ideal item for this occasion. This was a soap stone oil lamp [Kullik] made by john Terriak. It was to be from Fran, an Inuit of Labrador to the Maori of NZ.

Due to the short time span that NN had given us it was a frantic time to get the items to him in time for his departure to NZ. Frantic really does not do it justice, but won’t go into that. Suffice to say the gifts made it into NN hands before departure.

So the conference up in the Northern Island Mountains goes swimmingly and the smaller gifts get into the correct hands. Then it’s down to the city and some more meetings/conferences, this is where it goes awry.

Part way through the city do-dad there was supposed to have been an exchange of gifts. The Kullik was in NN hands when some one decides that time is short, so lets put all the gifts on a table in a room, leave it unattended while we all go into another room and give all sorts of speeches.

Mean time [the story is foggy here] the Kullik and other gifts were to have been collected by some one and taken to some ones office or some such safe place.
After the do-dad NN inquired as to what happened to the Kullik, surprise surprise, no one any bloody place who should have known did know.

NN has inquired several times of the people in NZ in the time hence of any sign of the missing Kullik. No sign.

To say I’m pissed is to put a diplomatic spin on how I feel, as I’m sure NN is pissed too.

So if anyone down NZ way, or anyone passing through and sees something like this on someones coffee table, then tell them they have it bloody illegally.

Chunder city.

This story from the business section really gets my goat. Loblaws buys up Atlantic Wholesalers a few years back, closes their operation in Lewisport this year, cuts loose 300 small to medium retailers a few weeks later, but all the while paying out these multi millions to their top people. Makes one want to puke.

Still silence from elected officials up this way, when I think the bar can not get any lower, it does.

Baguette hits the ice walls.

Right;Here is baguette and baguette’s buddy ready to hit the wall.

Left;Baguette has a ‘smoko’ and enjoys the view.

Below;Baguette about to swing into action for run to the top.

Pictures by Paul Fenton, intrepid baguette lover and adventure guide..

White coats.

Some pictures of young seals on the shores of Western Newfoundland.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Spring ritual.

Signs of warming days, of course that’s if we don’t get the low front that is hitting south of here.

Record broken, of a sorts.

Environment Canada said it got up to plus 5c yesterday, my thermometer said it got up to plus 8.8c.

The old record high for the 27th was plus 5.6.
My thermometer has similar readings to several others around town. The Enviro Canada site is down on the watershed all on its own.

So in honor of the birthday girls of the 27th I hereby declare a new high of plus 8.8c.

Any one who has a problem with that can bugger off.

This bloke is a nutter for sure. Hope he gets what he deserves. It should include a shed, kicking and balls.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Joke, rants, local news.

Sign at the entrance of the Northampton General Hosspital of the NHS said; Family PlanningAdvice. Entrance At Rear.

Funny or what? These English, not that there is anything wrong with that.

Here is the CBC on line coverage of the Wholesaler closure.

Not sure what to think of what Mr. Hammel has to say about “flying in goods” more and more. There are others wholesalers already in play, just not in Lewisport. Quebec may have something to offer, this would mean higher freight cost by road to GB. Extra cost from having to split up your suppliers could be on the cards as Atlantic seemed to have the greater variety on offer.

What ever is going to happen I would hope that Nunatsiavut Government would take this more seriously? I’m getting the feeling that this, like so many other day to day issues that effect North Coast residents will play second fiddle at NG HQ.

This week sees another busy week of meeting or information sessions. In progress is an Archaeological two day workshop sponsored by Parks Canada which has 5 archaeologists and people from the coast participating. This is centered on the Torngat National Park Reserve.

Wednesday sees the start of some information sessions by some people from ‘Ajunnginiq’, the Inuit arm of the Aboriginal health under NAHO.

Then Thursday we have some people coming in to have what they are calling a ‘mug up’. This is to get local people to sit down and talk about any changes in the environment and conditions they have experienced while on the land the last several years.

Then there is the temperature, it did not get below 0 last evening, and it is getting very close to the recorded high record as I write. The snow is taking a good cutting, and that’s OK if the extreme cold is not returning.

Ooops; I did not forget, though someone thought I did. Its the love of me life's Birthday today. A whole year older than me self, until next week when it will be back to just days.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Environment and the north.

Just some links to northern stories and one that the people in this province should take more interest in.

This is an interesting story, incomplete but interesting non the less. The story is incomplete in that the process apparently is a lot more complicated than indicated in this piece. There is a complex system of storing the heat produced deep in the ground and used as needed. There was coverage on CBC radio over the weekend but I can’t find a link to it

I guess these guys hope the Inuit in Greenland do not have modern communications, they seem to have been given a heads up.

Maybe this is why Susan is rumored to have gone vegetarian, or maybe that is due to her living in the big TO. That is not to say Susan is not a nice lady, she does do a lot to help younger people, or did when she visited Labrador some years ago.

CBC radio HV-GB did a piece this morning on the closure of Atlantic Wholesalers in Lewisport and the fact that they will no longer be serving about 300 odd retailers as I reported last week.
It is not known yet to what extent this will affect retailers but more importantly consumers.
I vil be vatching you!!!!!!!


A nice little story about labradorite and the Ten Mile Bay anorthosite quarry just outside of Nain. There is another quarry at Iggiak that has been shut down for a couple of seasons for reasons I’m not familiar with, plus there are other deposits that have not been worked as yet.

These pictures were taken a couple of springs ago by B. Lyall. Some of the crew were on site readying for the summer operations.
There is a cutting plant in Hopedale operated by LIDC that cuts the larger blocks into smaller slabs for construction and for headstones and the like.

Hydro daux.

For the electrical enthusiast I thought I should put up some larger pictures of the hydro plant.

I'm told it turns out watts at a constant 4270 ish., something like that any way.

Pushing the envelope.

A couple of shots from the hill just off Annainaks pond.
This avalanche was human triggered, most likely a ski doo high marker, there are several tracks leading into the run off area..
This is the same spot that two snow borders triggered an avalanche last year, one of the youth at a lower level was partly buried, his buddy dug him put.
Fortunately the whole pack did not come down this time, there are large clumps of snow that did not move far, but are big enough to bury a person and snow mobile if they had been in the area.

Annainaks pond is the reserve water supply for the town. A pipe runs down the hill from the pond, if needed valves are turned on to run water down into the dame.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Inside the Hydro Plant.

The yellow tank is a day fuel tank. It’s filled about 3 to 4 times a day from an outside larger tank that is filled about once every 4 days which is filled from the light blue tanks at the old plant at the bottom of the hill. [picture 1].
Why all this then? Cause Hydro insisted on building the new plant as near as possible to the storage tanks and the only suitable stable land was on top of the hill.
It was a controversial decision at the time and council tried to get hydro to build around near the town dump, lot of stable land around there. But N&LH resisted and got its way.
Any way, apart from that the plant is about 6 years old now, very clean and well maintained inside. It is controlled by computer for everything but oil filter and oil changes.
The two white air compressor tanks pump the fuel up from the large bottom tanks to the two upper tanks; this is all automated and controlled at the computer as well.

The only out of date system in the whole operation is the water and toilet system. Because the hill is way above the dame level water has to be brought manually in large barrels and siphoned into the plant. As well the brown waste is hauled out manually. One thing N&LH did not get its way with the town was their request to put in a trench septic system. There is berry picking and a fishing spot directly below the plant, so no way said the town in a large voice. Matter of fact the site of the plant is smack bang in the middle of what was a great berry area; as well it was used as a picnic ball game area.
Oh well, shit happens. There is a new ball field now down below, and there are many great berry picking spots.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Spring ritual.

These pictures were taken last spring outside Makkovik, Labrador. The cold froze the holes in the ice so the seals were unable to get back into the water. I forget the photographers name.

Don't whack me mister human!!!!!

Ok little seal, just a 243 well placed.

Posted by Picasa

News reports are saying that the annual seal hunt may be delayed or even put off entirely this year.
Thin ice and winds blowing the heavier ice north ward have made it very precarious for the young seals to survive.

The up side of this is we do not have to put up with the usual pro and anti sealing crap that is getting way out of whack [pun intended].
The down side is fishermen who depend on the sealing income for gearing up for other fisheries will surly feel the pinch.
This is not a seal pizza and calzone. Just your usual sauce with pepperoni, two cheeses, peppers, olives.
The baguettes are for the ice climber come avalanche dude.

All most spring like.

Took this panorama of the airstrip end of town this morning from outside the power [hydro] plant. Note: just above the large beige building [primary school] you can make out the latest avalanche event from earlier this week.
My avalanche man from next door was up there doing his readings in -36c...... it’s Ok he’s Irish descent.
While up there I took some pictures of inside the hydro plant, will so something with them at a later date.

Lock out northern style. The things a bloke has to do to get to do a little work. First ya got’a work like a dog to even get near the gate, then ya got’a unfreeze the lock and dig more before you get to the delicate instruments.
Under the pyramids are a neutron monitor and a magnetometer.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Continuing non story; sad man.

Another story on the closure of Atlantic Wholesalers in Lewisport. As it’s on the Island, and Lewisport has for it’s MHA a minister of the crown, and they are losing 70 odd jobs, so it's understandable the coverage.

What is a surprise for me is the total lack of coverage by the media or any politician of the effects on the Labrador.
Just like the long history on the Island, the company has just as long a history with Labrador and the Quebec Lower North Shore. Many retailers purchased around 80% of the supplies from this company; they will all be affected some way, as mentioned before by me to what extent is not known yet.
It is just incredulous to me that the status quo has kicked in again, most are sitting back to wait and see what happens, then bitch and moan when the negative does happen.

Up this way there is no chamber of commerce, no consumer group [except this one man show] to lobby on issues such as this. Our MHA seems to have gone further underground that usual, the NG seems either overwhelmed or totally unprepared for self government that they keep putting on the back burner issues that effect our every day lives. Not only this issue but transport of all types, postage rates, many health and social and women’s issues are continually pushed aside for the so called “big picture” issues, or other issues that may or may not be important and may or may not effect the people down the road.

There is a couple of store managers and one other who have done work on the closure of AH, but there is total lack of back up from politicians or the consumer.
It will be the consumer who gets the hit, for that reason I am continually bamboozled as to why there continues to be no one speaking out. Perhaps it’s because they are sick of being ignored, or know they will be ignored so they say “what’s the use”. I do have a little sympathy for that, but only a little.

I know the issue has been brought to the politician’s attention. It has also been reported locally by CKOK, so I just reckon I’ll have to continue to be bamboozled.

I do not have resources to pursue a story like this, nor does CKOK have the staff. But others do and continually ignore issues on the coast, except if its alcohol related. Same as the politicians; ignore and treat every body like mushrooms. Freak’n sad man.

Breaking on the above story.

I was going to hit the publish button on the above post tomorrow, but the editor in chief said go with it now.

I have just learnt that the company in question is cutting loose the majority of its smaller customers from the Quebec North Shore all the way up the Labrador to Nain.
My source tell me that the company will just keep about 27 of its own or lager retailers and the 250 odd others can go suck eggs.

This news is beyond anything any one anticipated, and it’s all bad especially for the consumer.

There is a lot of stuff comes into play here, surly the procrastinators with the power and the resources will have to do something now.

Electrical distrabution.

In reference to a PD query.

Our electricity{Hydro]is produced by diesel generators [3] in a plant overlooking the community. Operated by Newfoundland & Labrador Hydro it has become a reliable albeit expensive source for most purposes in our homes and businesses.
The plant is a new high tech operation; it is controlled by computers with just two local employers doing routine checks and maintenance. Any major problems with computers and engines repair crews fly in from Goose Bay.

The distribution [lines and poles] are quite the hardy types given the weather conditions and the soil conditions.
No high tech methods are used in erecting the poles. An excavator digs a hole, swings the pole in, crew throw in some rock, soil, tamp it down. In some cases were you have intersecting lines, or the pole has a transformer on it, or the soil conditions warrant, a wooden crib [using 6x6] is built around the bottom of pole and filled with large rocks.

The lines are all hung using manual labor as main source. Pole climbing is an essential skill for “line men” and general maintenance people. When the new lines need tightening the end of the line is hooked to a pick up and pulled on and stretched that way. Also hung on the poles are the Telephone and Cable TV lines.

Recent years have seen very few outages due to weather, quite amazing really. We have had the odd downed line due to constant wind movement, and or freezing rain plus the occasional short due to aging connectors and the like, but overall we have been well served I would think.

Not so in years past, but those outage problems were due to aging generation equipment and bad regional management oversight.
Thanks to a study done by a local citizen over two years, and with the help of the local government of the day, we ended up with not only new generators but a new building. And some naughty boys in GB got a telling off or two.

So after the backgrounder I guess to answer PD questions re why we don’t have more downed lines in storms; not sure there is any one reason.
Could be that we do not have the amount of wet snow and sleet as down south. Our air gets colder quicker and stays that way for months and months. Our winds are constant at times but rarely do we get above the 90 to 100 KPH range. The poles are a lot lower than in the south for sure, and maybe a lot closer to each other.
I do know we do have some anxious times in storms, but given their intensity and occurrence we get off rather well. Another contributor maybe the high hills around the back [south and west] of the town and high Islands to the east all giving us some protection.

Oh Joy Oh Joy.

First day of spring, yipidydodarday.

Until I went outside to work in the greenhouse that is. If I could find the door and find the raised bed I’d have to go buy a jackhammer to turn the soil wouldn’t I? The raised bed is under that mound of white stuff against the shed.
Sun is out and not a cloud in the sky, a mean of -23 with wind chill of -40c at 10am.

So it will be a few days yet before we get to this I would hazard to guess.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Bloody hell daux.

I know, you are sick of weather subject, so are we.

But here are some more pictures taken this morning. Yesterday I had leveled out [as I had all year] to just below the bottom of the steps, nice fluffy light snow is a joy to work with, so I did not mind.

After the wind it is like this. Hard packed wind blown snow takes the joy out of moving it. First picture is from bottom of the steps. It was up to the division of the window, past years it has ended up almost to the top of the window, still time for that I guess. Third picture is from the top of the mound where I have the ski doo at moment.

So today I say bugger it, I’m just going to level out the pack and tamp it down for now until my attitude improves.

Thanks for the feed back from Anonn in previous post.

Uperty date: Now I feel better, after having to change the plugs on the ski doo, going to the post office and picking up all the bills and driving back into -38c wind chills I fell on top of the world.

Bloody hell.

Well it’s confirmed, god did make little green apples.
The wind hit about noon yesterday, bit stronger than I and Environment Canada expected. No bloody use putting a wind and blizzard warning up after the fact dudes, I can look out the window if I need forecasts after the fact.

For the first time this winter Fran called to be picked up from work. This was partly due to the fact she did not wear her wind pants to work, it was quite nice then. By 4pm the wind was gusting to 98kph, total white outs at times, it hit 100 over night. Nothing closed down though.

My eyes are glazing over and the head is spinning trying to make sense of this equalization mumbo jumbo from the budget. While no great fan of Danny boy I did enjoy him taking that sick bloody smirk of Flaherty’s face on dough boy Duffy’s CTV show. An ear I fort all us Irish bloods was as tick as feaves.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Monday morning coming down.

Heard about this on CBC radio overnight program. Seems like a new concept that is just under way for the NSW election.

It could be a nice way for raising money for charities over this way. From a provincial perspective some lucky charities would be looking at a not bad bonanza come October with promises for Labrador not kept. It would work well on the federal level as well. Only one term to come up with the goods.

It would stop politicians from promising the moon, but better still it would penalize parties who do not keep their promise when elected. What we have now is a large part of the electorate gullibility buying into the same promises at each election.

We had a weekend of ratty weather, Saturday clear but cold, Sunday flat in snow and or rain all day, but a lot warmer. Today snow but supposed to clear later with temperatures dropping. As long as the wind stays away, yeah right like god didn’t make little green apples.

Out shoveling snow this morning, started to get a sweat up, it reminded me of my first summer here back in 1978. I was outside my sisters house dressed pretty warm, it was about 10c, not quite what I was used to summer time. This guy walks past heading home from his boat, “almost too warm” was his comment after initial greeting. That’s how I felt this morning, almost too warm.

Photos taken at Cod Island, September 1978.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Fantasy day over.

Back to reality Ti's.
OK it's semi reality.
No Guinness for us brown or otherwise. Bloody stupid idea this greening of the one of the best elixirs Yahweh blessed us with.
If you want to get your own weeme go here, kind of fun.

Tis St.Patricks Day is it?

Friday, March 16, 2007

Weather n Transport.

Looks like we are in for a weekend. This morning we have -24 with a wind chill of -38c. Forecast for Sunday is for +5c with chance of snow and or rain.
Nuff of the pleasantries.

Back to transport in de north shall we? At the start of the meeting on Tuesday some time was spent on discussing the Government Press release on the 12th. My co-presenter, in retrospect, thought maybe he wasted time on the subject, well it looks like not.

When you look at the PR and the accompanying 5 pages of passenger and freight rates [not on line] it’s clear this was a rush job and not very well thought out.

The PR emphasis a ‘road equivalency’ and an equal rate per mile for passengers, no matter what the route.
Well holes have been put in equal rate for all claims.

And I pointed out at the meeting that road equivalency would mean higher charges for all the longer haul runs. No car ferry is available, vehicles are sent as freight, passengers on a different vessel, or plane. The only runs that may make sense for the road equivalency would be the gulf runs and maybe some shorter car ferry runs in the south. This was dismissed by the other side, did not want to talk about it.

Minister Hickey confirmed the skepticism this morning on CBC morning show out of HV-GB.
Hickey said that it had been brought to his attention that some of the published rates were unequal, and that he would be instructing his staff to address these anomalies. He went on to say as far as the road equivalency was concerned, he had since leaned that on the mv Sir Robert Bond this would mean a fare of about $1400.00 from Goose Bay to Cartwright. Quite an increase from what it now is. So no change will be implemented on that run, as well as some others. FYI, Hickey is the member for the Lake Melville region that contains HV-GB.

Also raised at the meeting was the timing of the release, and the fact it was far from complete with no rates for the Lewisport-Cartwright-Goose Bay north to Nain.
This morning Hickey confirmed the omissions, said that this is a work in progress and that the longer haul runs will be addressed in due course, No mention of how long the due course would be.

This brings us to the timing of the PR. You would have to be a pretty wanked out junky not to conclude this was rushed to coincide with the bi-election in Labrador West on Tuesday, and the Federal budget due out this coming Monday.

The incompetence and incompleteness of the PR confirms this skepticism.

Another question that has not been asked to my knowledge; why has it taken this government so long to realize the inequities in the fare and freight structure.

To be fair many rates will go down, some substantially, but what gets on our goat up this way is that we are invariably left to last, or an afterthought, in many of these things. This is just another one in a long list.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

History unshrouded.

Holy crap, Holy Yahweh. Came across some interesting history of Iqaluit, in Nunavut, and the attitudes of the colonialist. Site I came across them is on the links side bar now.

Matter of fact I came across some of that same attitude this past Tuesday. More things change the more they stay the same.

Some may say that that was then, attitudes change with the times, well in many cases they don't. People on the north cost of Labrador have been upset with colonialist type attitudes towards them by people and businesses in their own region, to wit Happy Valley- Goose Bay. This was strengthened on Tuesday by one persons attitude and by another persons confirmation that this stuff did and does happen.

Transport in de north.

WE finely got to sit down with some people from WST and the Woodward Group to discuss transport issues on the coast, to Nain specifically [see CKOK radio briefs below]. The meeting took place on Tuesday 13, one three hour session in the afternoon and another session in the evening.
I was only at the afternoon session; my self and a delegate from Nunatsiavut were the only presenters. I understand only two presenters at the evening session as well.
What we lacked in numbers we made up in passion and knowledge of the issues that effect our every day lives.
We did not get to mention we need a new terminal building at the airstrip, as these pictures show it is an embarrassment, not to mention an inconvenience for the outgoing passengers and the staff of the airlines. You should see it when freight is all over the floor and people are trying to check in. In going passengers do not have to enter the building, unless to use the bathrooms, if they are not frozen up, or out of order for other reasons.

Picture #1 is of the check in area/freight storage area. #2 is of waiting area. #3 is of bathrooms. #4 is of smoking room. # 5 is part of the ramp area, the fuel tanks are behind the Deere.
I will write further on the meeting in a later post. The sun is out and so am I.

CKOK radio briefs: 1:59 PM
Transportation Concerns

The meeting to discuss operational issues on marine and air transport finally took place.
Representatives from the Department of Transport and the Woodward Group of Companies arrived in Nain yesterday and held two sessions with concerned citizens.
Issues of concern varied from mechanical breakdowns of the vessels to the quality of food on the Northern Ranger.
One of the most discussed issues was the “food by mail subsidy” program.
No representatives from the program were present.
Residents were concerned that the businesses were subsidized for the goods but the savings weren’t being passed on to the consumers.
And a request was made that the program be in place all year round and not have a cut-off date.
A point was also made that the shipping costs for dry and chilled goods be more equitable.
It was raised that wholesalers were shipping the two together to save on shipping costs.
A lot of discussion also took place regarding manifests and weigh bills on freight.
It was pointed out that the information on the manifest is incorrect quite often leaving business’ owners and residents out in the cold waiting for items that weren’t even there.
The representative from Woodward’s, Dennis White said he’ll look into the issue.
A number of issues with the Northern Ranger were also brought up.
They varied from the numerous breakdowns last summer to the quality of the cafeteria food.
And for the sake of tourism and passengers these problems need to be addressed.
Another issue brought to the attention of the representatives was the shipping of freight through Cartwright.
It was said that when freight originated from Lewisporte the business owners had better shipping costs so was the choice and quality of goods.
It was also recommended that a freight vessel originate from Lewisport to ports to Nain.
As of now a vehicle is treated as freight and much too expensive to ship.
The government representative said these points will be reported to the Minister, who will come at a later time to meet with residents.

Ice fishing and rowing???

Matthew went off with his Nama and Papa last Sunday.
Caught the one in his hands. It was up Anaktalik. photos by S. Ford.

This story rings familiar to many who follow the St.John's summer time news, and who can avoid that in this province. I hope he makes it for the kids in Mumbai. I mean him no grief, but one has to wonder who pays if he has to be rescued.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

More answers for PD.

Radio is by AM. Both CBC and Okalakatiget Society have transmitters in the 10 watt range. Am because there are lots of cabins in outlying Island and bays and when people there they like to hear the weather forecast, plus other shows.

Telephone is operated by Aliant. They supply the dial up internet and the high speed broadband as well.
Signals run through the usual wires, strung on the hydro poles in town, up to a control center where it is digitized and sent down to Goose Bay by a series of micro wave towers.
We are well served in the communications field over all, better than many rural areas in the south, no cell though.

TV is by two free through air channels, CBC and APTN. Cable by Persona, satellite TV by Bell ExpressVu or Star Choice. Majority of homes have satellite TV most use ExpressVu.

No local transmission of TV. Okalakatiget Society tapes all their programs and these are shown on APTN.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Questions asked, questions answered.

Paradise Driver asked some pertinent questions about Nain, So for him and others interested here are some details.

Nain’s population is about 1300.

Local transport modes are: Winter; snowmobile mainly, if conditions permit four wheelers can be used.
Summer; around town normal vehicles, four wheelers [ATV], shanks pony.
Out of town speed boats, motor boats.

Transport into and out of Nain. All year round by air from Goose Bay. Air Labrador or Innu Mikun.
Winter ground is by snowmobile only. Summer is by boat from the south and the coastal communities.

Nain has a health care clinic staffed by about 4 to 5 nurses [RN] and assistance. Doctors rotate in from Goose Bay on a one week a month schedule as a rule. Any specialist or problems beyond a RN scope you have to go to Goose bay. Same for any non traditional health care, plus eye, dental. There is a once a year visit by an optometrist, but they are the pits.

The RCMP has a detachment of six on two year rotations.

Nain Volunteer Fire Brigade has a nice building housing winter and summer vehicles plus equipment. There are fire hydrants at regular intervals around the town. Hydrants are below ground in special chambers that are kept clear of snow by the local government workers.

Now getting to Happy Valley Goose Bay is another story. All year by road up from Quebec. Summer by road and ferry from Newfoundland [see above].
By air you have choice of Air Labrador and Provincial Airlines [see Innu Mikun]from Montreal or St.John’s. Air Canada from Halifax.

Monday, March 12, 2007


Came across these two outside the hotel on Monday lunch time. The guy is from Quebec, I recognized him from couple years ago, and when I broached the subject he feigned ‘no speak a de English’.
There is a story behind stories here, not sure of the intricacies, but this is the third time the guy has tried to get from Nain to George River [Kangiqsualujjuaq] in Northern Quebec, each time he has returned short of destination. He has the large sled, a smaller one behind, the dog and himself as power.
I only pulled up to see the dog, a beautiful friendly animal about a year old, don’t really give a shit about the intricacies, but if they do fall into my hands I’ll pas them on.

Monday morning blue,

as in the blue sky.

Man it was nice, -16c, perfect. Just had to throw caution to the wind and go for a ride. Only a few miles to test the back, I’m still walking to date.
I came across this tent and sign at ‘southern point’. The sign is to warn people of when the ice breaker vessels are moving in and out of Voisey’s Bay mine mill. Not sure why the tent, might be manned when the ships are around.

The other views are of Nain on the way back home, come on up folks, it’s the best time of year to be here.