1 April 2007

On up the Mackenzie.....SnowSTAR passed through the oil and gas-producing hub of Norman Wells and continued on South to the community of Tulit'a (Fort Norman) where they will spend the night. They set a new distance record today of almost 250km! They will conduct a school visit here tomorrow morning and then head East toward the community of Deline and the vast frozen expanse of Great Bear Lake. Camp 17 tonight is set up in the Tulit'a School. We have sounclips tonight on TRANSPORTATION and a Weather Report in SPANISH.....The nightly dispatch has some great photos of the beautiful and historic church the crew visited yesterday in Fort Good Hope. Enjoy.

Click Here for Tonight's Sounclip on TRANSPORTATION

CHUGIAK STUDENTS: Click Here for Weather in EPANOL

Sistine Chapel of the North

Dispatch, April 1, 2007:  Tulit'a (formerly Ft. Norman) on the Mackenzie River, Northwest Territories

Camp 17 Location: 64º 54’N,  125º 34’W

253 km covered today

Sunny, -4ºF (-20ºC); overnight low -10ºF (-23ºF)

Sistine Chapel of the North:   We had a rare pleasure today.  We got a tour of the church in Fort Good Hope, Our Lady of Good Hope Church. Sister Joan Liss gave us a wonderful tour.  The church was built in the late-1800s.  It is one of many Catholic Churches in the Canadian and Alaska North.  Father Emile Petitot worked on the church, creating marvelous scroll wood work and painting beautiful murals on the walls.   The ceiling of the church is azure with yellow stars, like the winter night sky of the Arctic (and similar to the Alaska flag). The church has been renovated and is a historic building now, but is still very much an active and well-used church. In fact, we had to end our tour in time for Sunday Services to begin.  They say a picture is worth a thousand words. In this case, a picture is worth even more, so we will let the pictures of the church speak for themselves.  Anyone visiting Ft. Good Hope must take the time to see this beautiful work of art.

Because we came through Ft. Good Hope on a weekend, we did not get to visit with the kids in the school.  Sorry kids!  Unfortunately, we have to travel fairly fast now to get back on schedule. However, we left posters for each home room, and we had a wonderful visit with several of the teachers from the school, as well as the Principal, Gordon Sutton (picture attached).  Thank you for all the hospitality and good conversation.  We have been learning a lot about education in the North, including the fact that many of the teachers are from Newfoundland, clear on the opposite side of Canada.

We traveled a long ways today. . .through Norman Wells, ending in Tulita.  Much of our route was on winter road, which we will describe in a later dispatch.  Some of the traveling was very good, and some was terrible.  Can you guess why?  Answer tomorrow.



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