Baker Lake, Nunavut

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Baker Lake
ᖃᒪᓂᑦᑐᐊᖅ
Qamani'tuaq
Hamlet
Baker Lake, 1995
Baker Lake, 1995
Baker Lake is located in Nunavut
Baker Lake
Baker Lake
Baker Lake is located in Canada
Baker Lake
Baker Lake
Coordinates: 64°19′05″N 096°01′03″W / 64.31806°N 96.01750°W / 64.31806; -96.01750Coordinates: 64°19′05″N 096°01′03″W / 64.31806°N 96.01750°W / 64.31806; -96.01750
Country Canada
Territory Nunavut
Region Kivalliq Region
Electoral district Baker Lake
Government[1][2]
 • Type Hamlet Council
 • Mayor Joseph Aupaluktuq
 • MLAs Simeon Mikkungwak
Area[3][4]
 • Total 182.22 km2 (70.36 sq mi)
 • Population Centre 1.57 km2 (0.61 sq mi)
Elevation[5] 18 m (59 ft)
Population (2016)[3][4]
 • Total 2,069
 • Density 11/km2 (29/sq mi)
 • Population Centre 1,690
 • Population Centre density 1,100/km2 (2,800/sq mi)
Time zone CST (UTC−6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC−5)
Canadian Postal code X0C 0A0
Area code(s) 867
Website www.bakerlake.ca

Baker Lake (Inuktitut syllabics: ᖃᒪᓂᑦᑐᐊᖅ, big lake joined by a river at both ends, Inuktitut: Qamani'tuaq, where the river widens), is a hamlet in the Kivalliq Region, in Nunavut on mainland Canada. Located 320 km (200 mi) inland from Hudson Bay, it is near the nation's geographical centre, and is notable for being the Canadian Arctic's sole inland community.[6] The hamlet is located at the mouth of the Thelon River on the shore of Baker Lake. The community was given its English name in 1761 from Captain William Christopher who named it after Sir William Baker, the 11th Governor of the Hudson's Bay Company.[6][7][8]

History[edit]

In 1916, the Hudson's Bay Company established a trading post at Baker Lake, followed by Anglican missionaries in 1927. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police had been in the area for fifteen years before establishing a post at Baker Lake in 1930. In 1946 the population was 32, of which 25 were Inuit.[6] A small hospital was built in 1957, followed by a regional school the next year.[citation needed]

Videos of elders sharing oral histories have been collected by Inuit students as part of the Nunavut Teacher Education Program.[9]

Demographics[edit]

In the 2016 Census, Statistics Canada reported that Baker Lake had a population of 2,069 living in 580 of its 667 total dwellings, an 10.5% increase from its 2011 Census population of 1,872. With a land area of 182.22 km2 (70.36 sq mi), it had a population density of 11.4/km2 (29.4/sq mi) in 2016.[3]

Baker Lake is home to eleven Inuit groups:

Geography[edit]

Climate[edit]

Baker Lake features a monsoon-influenced subarctic climate (Köppen climate classification: Dwc), with bitterly cold winters averaging around -29.5 °C,(-21.1 °F), and cool to warm, very wet and rainy summers. Temperatures above 30.0 °C (86 °F) are possible. Winters run from October/November until April/May with temperatures averaging between −21 and −25 °C (−6 and −13 °F).[10] In contrast to Fairbanks, Alaska on a similar parallel, May is a colder month and June is chilly considering the perpetual daylight. Summers are usually cool, short, wet, and rainy; but can be warm or sometimes even humid; with a record high of 33.6 °C. Under the Nordenskjöld formula for determining polar vs. non-polar climates, however, Baker Lake's climate is polar because with a coldest-month mean of −31.3 °C (−24.3 °F), the warmest-month mean would need be above 12.1 °C (53.8 °F) to keep Baker Lake out of the polar category, and Baker Lake's warmest-month mean is only 11.6 °C (52.9 °F) and the lack of trees at Baker Lake vindicate this judgement.[citation needed]

Climate data for Baker Lake Airport
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high humidex −2.0 −4.7 1.2 4.1 13.5 30.5 37.8 33.4 26.1 9.5 1.7 1.0 37.8
Record high °C (°F) −1.7
(28.9)
−4.1
(24.6)
1.5
(34.7)
5.0
(41)
13.9
(57)
28.1
(82.6)
33.6
(92.5)
30.9
(87.6)
22.6
(72.7)
9.8
(49.6)
2.2
(36)
1.1
(34)
33.6
(92.5)
Average high °C (°F) −27.7
(−17.9)
−27.4
(−17.3)
−22.0
(−7.6)
−12.3
(9.9)
−3.0
(26.6)
9.3
(48.7)
17.0
(62.6)
14.3
(57.7)
6.4
(43.5)
−3.4
(25.9)
−15.5
(4.1)
−23.1
(−9.6)
−7.3
(18.9)
Daily mean °C (°F) −31.3
(−24.3)
−31.1
(−24)
−26.3
(−15.3)
−17.0
(1.4)
−6.4
(20.5)
4.9
(40.8)
11.6
(52.9)
9.8
(49.6)
3.1
(37.6)
−6.5
(20.3)
−19.3
(−2.7)
−26.8
(−16.2)
−11.3
(11.7)
Average low °C (°F) −34.8
(−30.6)
−34.8
(−30.6)
−30.6
(−23.1)
−21.5
(−6.7)
−9.8
(14.4)
0.5
(32.9)
6.1
(43)
5.3
(41.5)
−0.2
(31.6)
−9.5
(14.9)
−23.1
(−9.6)
−30.5
(−22.9)
−15.2
(4.6)
Record low °C (°F) −50.6
(−59.1)
−50.0
(−58)
−50.0
(−58)
−41.1
(−42)
−27.8
(−18)
−13.9
(7)
−1.7
(28.9)
−3.4
(25.9)
−14.4
(6.1)
−30.6
(−23.1)
−42.7
(−44.9)
−45.6
(−50.1)
−50.6
(−59.1)
Record low wind chill −71.5 −70.5 −66.1 −58.5 −42.3 −23.5 −5.8 −10.2 −23.0 −46.9 −59.2 −64.0 −71.5
Average precipitation mm (inches) 6.2
(0.244)
7.5
(0.295)
11.4
(0.449)
14.0
(0.551)
14.5
(0.571)
23.1
(0.909)
41.1
(1.618)
52.0
(2.047)
48.7
(1.917)
27.0
(1.063)
16.0
(0.63)
11.1
(0.437)
272.5
(10.728)
Average rainfall mm (inches) 0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.0
(0)
0.1
(0.004)
4.8
(0.189)
20.3
(0.799)
41.1
(1.618)
51.2
(2.016)
40.6
(1.598)
5.2
(0.205)
0.1
(0.004)
0.0
(0)
163.4
(6.433)
Average snowfall cm (inches) 7.4
(2.91)
8.8
(3.46)
13.8
(5.43)
16.0
(6.3)
11.1
(4.37)
2.6
(1.02)
0.0
(0)
0.9
(0.35)
7.7
(3.03)
24.4
(9.61)
20.3
(7.99)
13.5
(5.31)
126.5
(49.8)
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm) 5.5 6.6 7.4 7.2 7.5 7.6 9.5 12.2 12.9 12.9 9.6 8.1 107.0
Average rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.1 2.3 6.8 9.4 12.2 10.4 2.4 0.0 0.0 43.8
Average snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm) 5.8 6.8 7.8 7.3 6.1 1.5 0.0 0.2 4.1 11.6 10.3 8.4 70.0
Average relative humidity (%) 65.1 64.1 66.8 75.4 81.4 67.4 58.8 65.3 73.7 83.3 74.1 67.6 70.2
Mean monthly sunshine hours 29.8 97.6 178.4 233.7 194.0 284.2 327.0 199.6 90.1 54.2 43.8 16.1 1,748.3
Percent possible sunshine 17.7 41.0 49.2 51.7 33.9 45.2 53.5 39.2 22.9 17.8 22.3 12.0 33.9
Source: Environment Canada Canadian Climate Normals 1981–2010[10]

Wildlife[edit]

Baker Lake is host to a variety of wildlife including caribou, muskox, Arctic hares and wolves, wolverines, sik-siks, geese and lake trout among others.[citation needed]

Economy[edit]

Man and Child, Serpentine (1999). Artist: Barnabus Arnasungaaq (Baker Lake, Nunavut)

Many of the town's residents work in the nearby mines.[11] Much of the local infrastructure and logistics-related employment is based around aiding mineral exploration and mining efforts in the wider area. The main source of employment and growth in this sector is Canadian-based mining company Agnico-Eagle Mines, who in 2010 began work at their Meadowbank mine site located 86 km (53 mi) north of Baker Lake.[12] The construction of the mine employed over 1,000 workers, over 30% of them were locals from the general area of the Kivalliq Region. Along with employing local people, the company helped build cellphone towers to get the community connected to Northwestel's cellphone service. The coming of workers from all across Canada also helped developing tourism in this community. There is also potential for a uranium mine, called the Kiggavik Project, which is being proposed by AREVA Resources Canada.[13]

Arts and culture[edit]

Baker Lake is known for its Inuit art, such as wallhangings, basalt stone sculptures and stonecut prints. The community has been home to internationally exhibited artists such as Matthew Agigaaq, Elizabeth Angrnaqquaq, Luke Anguhadluq, Barnabus Arnasungaaq, David Ikutaq, Toona Iquliq, Jessie Oonark, Ruth Qaulluaryuk, Irene Avaalaaqiaq Tiktaalaaq, Simon Tookoome, Marion Tuu'luq, and Marie Kuunnuaq.[14][15]


The Jessie Ooonark Arts and Crafts Centre, which opened in 1992, is a work area for the communities artists. It provides space for carving, print making, sewing and jewellery making. It is also home to Jessie Oonark Crafts Ltd. a subsidiary of the Nunavut Development Corporation, a Government of Nunavut crown corporation.[16][17]

Government[edit]

Baker Lake in autumn 2009

The current mayor of Baker Lake is Joseph Aupaluktuq.

Infrastructure[edit]

Transportation[edit]

The settlement is served by Baker Lake Airport, linking it to the nearby coastal town of Rankin Inlet, about 30 minutes away by air. Calm Air, and First Air serve the town with at least two flights daily. Sundays offer flights to Winnipeg.

As in every community in Nunavut the roads are unpaved and do not connect with any other community in the territory.

Services[edit]

Baker Lake has a woman's shelter, health centre (Baker Lake Health Centre), dental clinic, counselling centre, elders' centre, three hotels (Baker Lake Lodge, Iglu Hotel and Nunamiut Lodge), swimming pool, library, primary and secondary school (Rachel Arngnammaktiq Elementary School and Jonah Amitnaaq Secondary School), and youth centre.

There are three churches in the community, Anglican (St. Aidan's), Catholic (St. Paul's) and Glad Tidings.[citation needed]. Baker Lake has cellular telephone service, unlike most of the villages in the Kivalliq Region. The community also has an FM radio station (CKQN), local internet service, and cable TV.[citation needed]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "NunatsiaqOnline 2013-12-03: NEWS: Nunavummiut vie for council positions in upcoming hamlet elections". Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  2. ^ Results for the constituency of Baker Lake at Elections Nunavut
  3. ^ a b c "Statistics Canada: 2016 Census Profile". Statistics Canada. Retrieved 18 February 2017. 
  4. ^ a b "Census Profile, 2016 Census". Statistics Canada. Retrieved 18 February 2017. 
  5. ^ Elevation at airport. Canada Flight Supplement. Effective 0901Z 27 April 2017 to 0901Z 22 June 2017
  6. ^ a b c "Sandy Lunan, Hudson's Bay Co. Factor, baking his own bread, Baker Lake, Northwest Territories, 1946". Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 2008-03-17. 
  7. ^ "Hbc Heritage - Heritage Home". Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  8. ^ Baker Lake history
  9. ^ "NTEP-Baker-Lake - home". Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  10. ^ a b "Baker Lake A". Canadian Climate Normals 1981–2010. Environment Canada. Climate ID: 2300500. Retrieved March 8, 2016. 
  11. ^ "NunatsiaqOnline 2010-06-20: NEWS: Mine’s alchemy turns Nunavut poverty into hope". Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  12. ^ "Operations – Agnico Eagle Mines". Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  13. ^ "AREVA Resources Canada - AREVA Group". Retrieved 26 October 2016. 
  14. ^ Artists and artwork represented at Spirit Wrestler Gallery, Vancouver, BC, Canada
  15. ^ Jules Heller; Nancy G. Heller (19 December 2013). North American Women Artists of the Twentieth Century: A Biographical Dictionary. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-135-63882-5. 
  16. ^ Jessie Oonark Crafts Ltd.
  17. ^ Nunavut Development Corporation

Further reading[edit]

  • Baker Lake Residents' Association, and Mary McCulloch. Baker Lake, N.W.T., 1870-1970. Baker Lake, N.W.T.: Baker Lake Residents' Association, 1971.
  • Kardosh, Judy. Works on Cloth Imagery by Artists of Baker Lake, Nunavut. Vancouver: Marion Scott Gallery, 2002. ISBN 0-921634-36-6
  • Klassen, R. A. Drift composition and glacial dispersal trains, Baker Lake area, District of Keewatin, northwest territories. Ottawa: Geological Survey of Canada, 1995. ISBN 0-660-16087-0
  • Krebs, Charles J. The Lemming Cycle at Baker Lake, Northwest Territories, During 1959-62. 1964.
  • Miller, A. R. Uranium Geology of the Eastern Baker Lake Basin, District of Keewatin, Northwest Territories. [Ottawa]: Energy, Mines, and Resources Canada, 1980. ISBN 0-660-10707-4
  • Renewable Resources Consulting Services. Study of the Effects of Resource Exploration and Development on Hunting and Trapping on the Traditional Economy of the Inuit in the Baker Lake Area. Edmonton: Renewable Resources Consulting Services, 1977.

External links[edit]