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Yukon vs. Yukon: driving the Klondike highway

Posted by Aaron Kylie in Product reviews on Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The 2015 GMC Yukon Denali in the Yukon territory. (Photo: Aaron Kylie)

I’d like to say the brakes screeched to a halt, but brakes don’t really do that anymore. Instead, as I came upon a black bear about to cross the Klondike Highway in front of me, the anti-lock brake system in the 2015 GMC Yukon Denali sports utility vehicle brought the truck to a quick, shuddering stop. The bear limped across the road — it appeared to have an injured leg — and snuck largely out of sight into the brush on the opposite side of the road.

The encounter occurred about halfway between ...

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Advanced Canadian sonar technology takes crystal-clear pictures of arctic sea floor during the 2014 Franklin search

Posted by John Bennett in The Polar Blog on Monday, October 20, 2014

The Arctic Explorer autonomous underwater vehicle, which produces high-resolution sonar images, was successfully tested during this year’s Franklin hunt. (Photo: Nick Walker)


Harsh arctic conditions, such as those that defeated Sir John Franklin, are exactly what David Hopkin needed this summer to test some sophisticated Canadian undersea technology. Hopkin, a scientist with Defence Research and Development Canada, tried out some cutting-edge sonar imaging equipment in Nunavut as part of the 2014 Victoria Strait Expedition. His experiments met with resounding success.

With more ships going to the North every year, accurate maps are needed for Canada’s mostly uncharted ...

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Plotting an Arctic journey

Posted by Hugh Dale-Harris in Mapping on Monday, October 20, 2014

The New Land 2013 expedition enters a rock-carved canyon on Ellesmere Island, Nunavut (Photos courtesy of New Land 2013).

Editor’s note: What goes into deciding where to travel in the Canadian Arctic? In this second northern-themed instalment of our Map Monday series, Hugh Dale-Harris explains how his New Land Expedition team chose their route. Read his first post on the differences between navigating in the north vs. the south.

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Video of the week: night skiing

Posted by Sabrina Doyle in Wildlife on Friday, October 17, 2014

What do you get when you cross a rave party with a crew of powder hounds? This video.

Filmed partly in Golden, BC, it features skiers finding their way down the fresh slopes of mountains at night. Which, in this case, doesn't mean they're in the dark. In addition to wearing swanky LED-covered suits, the film crew has shone multi-coloured spotlights on the slopes, giving the whole scene an aurora-esque feel to it.

The video is a teaser of a slightly longer ski film soon to be released by Sweetgrass ...

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Throwback Thursday: Finding the HMS Investigator

Posted by Sabrina Doyle in Franklin Expedition on Thursday, October 16, 2014

(Photo: Courtesy of Library and Archives Canada/R9266-757)

Four years before the discovery of the HMS Erebus, archeologists were stunned to find the HMS Investigator. This ship was among the vessels that went searching for the ill-fated Franklin ships, and while the Investigator crew was unsuccessful in finding their fellow European comrades, they did end up being the first to circumnavigate the Americas. Eventually, however, the Investigator was abandoned in the Arctic and never seen again. Until July 24, 2010, that is.

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