Alert Bay

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This article is about the island community on the west coast of British Columbia. For the community in Canada's far north, see Alert, Nunavut.
Village of Alert Bay
'ya̱lis
Village
The big house near Alert Bay.
The big house near Alert Bay.
Village of Alert Bay is located in British Columbia
Village of Alert Bay
Village of Alert Bay
Location within British Columbia
Coordinates: 50°34′57″N 126°55′31″W / 50.58250°N 126.92528°W / 50.58250; -126.92528Coordinates: 50°34′57″N 126°55′31″W / 50.58250°N 126.92528°W / 50.58250; -126.92528
Country  Canada
Province  British Columbia
Region Central Coast
Regional district Mount Waddington
Incorporated 1946
Government
 • Governing body Alert Bay Village Council
Area
 • Total 1.78 km2 (0.69 sq mi)
Elevation 30 m (100 ft)
Population
 • Total 1,200-1,500
 • Density 360/km2 (2,300/sq mi)
Time zone PST (UTC-8)
Highways ferry to Port McNeill and Sointula
Waterways Johnstone Strait, Broughton Strait, Cormorant Channel
Website Village of Alert Bay

Alert Bay (Kwak'wala: 'ya̱lis [1] ) is a village on Cormorant Island, in the Regional District of Mount Waddington, British Columbia, Canada. 1,200-1,500 people live within the village.[2]

Population[edit]

More than half of the village's 1,200-1,500 residents are First Nations people.[2] The village is in traditional Kwakwaka'wakw territory. Two Indian Reserves take up the rest of Cormorant Island, Alert Bay 1 on the east side of the island,[3] Alert Bay 1A on the west.[4]

Facilities and features[edit]

Alert Bay has a grocery store, museums, a traditional 'big house', a hospital, an RCMP station, a drug store, a post office, three restaurants and retail gift shops, a BC liquor store, a Royal Canadian Legion, a pub, doctors' offices, dental clinic, a drug and alcohol treatment centre, Alert Bay Drugs has automated teller machine exterior of their building. also automated teller machine inside Bayside Pub. The town has an Alert Bay Airport, a public airport and the Alert Bay Water Aerodrome. There is a boat harbour and a BC Ferries terminal with service to Sointula and Port McNeill. There is also one campground and an ecological park consisting of a cedar swamp and a small area of old-growth trees.

There is the Alert Bay Elementary School elementary school in Alert Bay for children in kindergarten and grades 1 to 7 and the T'lisalagi'lakw School (independent) owned and operated by the 'Namgis First Nation for children in Nursery, Kindergarten and grades 1 to 7. Grades 8 to 12 travel by foot ferrywater taxi to a school in nearby Port McNeill on Vancouver Island, along with students from Sointula on nearby Malcolm Island and others on North Island.

Alert Bay is also home to the world's tallest totem pole.[citation needed]

U’mista Cultural Centre[edit]

In 1921, the Government of Canada, in an effort to stop the potlatch custom of dance, song, and wealth distribution under Section 116 of the Indian Act, confiscated many items including wooden masks, copper shields, and dance regalia. During the 1970s and 80s, the Kwakwaka'wakw regained their possessions after long negotiations. The returned artifacts are housed in a museum at the U’mista Cultural Centre.[5]

Origin of the name[edit]

The settlement was named c.1860 after the Royal Navy ship HMS Alert, which conducted survey operations in the area.[6] and HMS Cormorant.

Climate[edit]

Climate data for Alert Bay
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high Humidex 13.6 16.1 19.5 23.3 38.9 30.6 35.0 35.1 29.5 31.8 18.3 14.4 38.9
Record high °C (°F) 13.9
(57)
16.7
(62.1)
18.7
(65.7)
23.5
(74.3)
35.2
(95.4)
30.0
(86)
29.4
(84.9)
33.3
(91.9)
27.9
(82.2)
23.9
(75)
17.8
(64)
15.6
(60.1)
35.2
(95.4)
Average high °C (°F) 6.1
(43)
7.0
(44.6)
9.6
(49.3)
11.4
(52.5)
14.3
(57.7)
15.8
(60.4)
18.0
(64.4)
18.4
(65.1)
16.0
(60.8)
11.8
(53.2)
7.4
(45.3)
5.4
(41.7)
11.8
(53.2)
Daily mean °C (°F) 4.3
(39.7)
4.6
(40.3)
6.3
(43.3)
7.7
(45.9)
10.4
(50.7)
12.2
(54)
14.1
(57.4)
14.4
(57.9)
12.2
(54)
9.0
(48.2)
5.5
(41.9)
3.6
(38.5)
8.7
(47.7)
Average low °C (°F) 2.4
(36.3)
2.2
(36)
3.0
(37.4)
4.0
(39.2)
6.4
(43.5)
8.5
(47.3)
10.2
(50.4)
10.4
(50.7)
8.3
(46.9)
6.1
(43)
3.5
(38.3)
1.8
(35.2)
5.6
(42.1)
Record low °C (°F) −11.1
(12)
−13.6
(7.5)
−7.8
(18)
−1.7
(28.9)
0.0
(32)
2.2
(36)
1.1
(34)
5.6
(42.1)
1.1
(34)
−3.9
(25)
−12.6
(9.3)
−13.3
(8.1)
−13.6
(7.5)
Wind chill −21.5 −26.5 −22.0 −4.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 −9.2 −24.8 −23.0 −26.5
Precipitation mm (inches) 215.9
(8.5)
149.9
(5.902)
109.7
(4.319)
103.4
(4.071)
78.3
(3.083)
79.1
(3.114)
45.4
(1.787)
62.3
(2.453)
76.8
(3.024)
209.9
(8.264)
249.6
(9.827)
193.3
(7.61)
1,573.5
(61.949)
Rainfall mm (inches) 210.2
(8.276)
138.9
(5.469)
108.4
(4.268)
102.9
(4.051)
78.3
(3.083)
79.1
(3.114)
45.4
(1.787)
62.3
(2.453)
76.8
(3.024)
209.4
(8.244)
246.5
(9.705)
186.7
(7.35)
1,544.9
(60.823)
Snowfall cm (inches) 6.2
(2.44)
12.1
(4.76)
1.4
(0.55)
0.5
(0.2)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.5
(0.2)
3.1
(1.22)
6.5
(2.56)
30.2
(11.89)
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm) 20.9 18.2 17.8 19.0 17.4 15.9 11.9 11.5 14.1 19.8 23.3 20.8 210.4
Avg. rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 19.8 17.0 17.5 19.0 17.4 15.9 11.9 11.5 14.1 19.8 22.8 20.0 206.5
Avg. snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm) 2.4 2.7 1.0 0.3 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.1 1.0 2.2 9.6
Source: [7]

Geology[edit]

Volcanic features in the geography around Alert Bay are part of the Alert Bay Volcanic Belt. It appears to have been active in Miocene and Pliocene times. No Holocene eruptions are known, and volcanic activity in the belt has likely ceased.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "FirstVoices: Kwak̓wala. Nature / Environment - place names: words". Retrieved 2012-07-08. 
  2. ^ a b "2006 Canadian Census". Statistics Canada. Retrieved 2010-01-16. 
  3. ^ BC Names entry "Alert Bay 1 (Indian Reserve)"
  4. ^ BC Names entry "Alert Bay 1a (Indian Reserve)"
  5. ^ "Dancing around Alert Bay". Straight.com. Retrieved 2006-06-01. [dead link]
  6. ^ Walbran, John (1909). British Columbia Coast Names, 1592-1906: their origin and history. Ottawa. 
  7. ^ "Calculation Information for 1981 to 2010 Canadian Normals Data". Environment Canada. Retrieved July 9, 2013. 

External links[edit]