Bathurst Island (Nunavut)

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Bathurst Island
Wfm bathurst island.jpg
Satellite photo montage of Bathurst Island and its neighbours
Bathurst Island.svg
Location of Bathurst Island
Location Northern Canada
Coordinates 75°46′N 099°47′W / 75.767°N 99.783°W / 75.767; -99.783 (Bathurst Island)Coordinates: 75°46′N 099°47′W / 75.767°N 99.783°W / 75.767; -99.783 (Bathurst Island)
Archipelago Queen Elizabeth Islands
Canadian Arctic Archipelago
Area 16,042 km2 (6,194 sq mi)
Area rank 54th
Length 117 mi (188 km)
Width 63–94 mi (101–151 km)
Territory Nunavut
Population 0

A member of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, Bathurst Island is one of the Queen Elizabeth Islands in Nunavut, Canada. The area of the island is estimated at 16,042 km2 (6,194 sq mi),[1] 115 to 117 mi (185 to 188 km) long and from 63 mi (101 km) to 72 mi (116 km) to 92.9 mi (149.5 km) wide, making it the 54th largest island in the world and Canada's 13th largest island. It is uninhabited.

The island is low-lying with few parts higher than 330 m (1,083 ft) in elevation. The highest point is 412 m (1,352 ft) at Stokes Mountain in the Stokes Range. This in turn forms part of the Arctic Cordillera mountain system. Good soil conditions produce abundant vegetation and support a more prolific wildlife population than other Arctic islands.

The island contains both the International Biological Program site Polar Bear Pass and Qausuittuq National Park.


Brooman Point Village[2] on the eastern coast of Bathurst Island was the site of Thule native tribes around A.D. 1000, conceivably during a warmer climate episode. William Edward Parry was the first European to discover the island in 1819, charting its southern coast.[3] It was named for Henry Bathurst, 3rd Earl Bathurst, British Secretary of State for War and the Colonies 1812-1827. Robert Aldrich charted much of its west coast in 1851, while George Henry Richards and Sherard Osborn charted its north coast in 1853.[4][5]

The Earth's North Magnetic Pole tracked northwards across Bathurst Island during the 1960s and 1970s.


  1. ^ "Atlas of Canada". 2009-08-12. Archived from the original on 2013-01-22. Retrieved 2010-08-30. 
  2. ^ Robert McGhee. Brooman Point Village. Archived from the original on 2008-06-12. Retrieved 2007-11-09. 
  3. ^ Parry, William Edward (1821). Journal of a voyage for the discovery of a North-West passage from the Atlantic to the Pacific: performed in the years 1819-20. London: John Murray. 
  4. ^ Mills, William James (2003). Exploring polar frontiers: a historical encyclopedia. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO. 
  5. ^ M'Dougall, George F. (1857). The eventful voyage of H.M. discovery ship "Resolute" to the Arctic regions, in search of Sir John Franklin and the missing crews of H.M. discovery ships "Erebus" and "Terror," 1852, 1853, 1854. London: Longman, Brown, Green, Longmans, & Roberts. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Anglin, Carolyn Diane, and John Christopher Harrison. Mineral and Energy Resource Assessment of Bathurst Island Area, Nunavut Parts of NTS 68G, 68H, 69B and 79A. [Ottawa]: Geological Survey of Canada, 1999.
  • Blake, Weston. Preliminary Account of the Glacial History of Bathurst Island, Arctic Archipelago. Ottawa: Department of Mines and Technical Surveys, 1964.
  • Danks, H. V. Arthropods of Polar Bear Pass, Bathurst Island, Arctic Canada. Syllogeus, no. 25. Ottawa: National Museum of Natural Sciences, National Museums of Canada, 1980.
  • Freeman, Milton M. R., and Linda M. Hackman. Bathurst Island NWT A Test Case of Canada's Northern Policy. Canadian Public Policy, Vol.1,No.3, Summer. 1975.
  • Givelet, N, F Roos-Barraclough, M E Goodsite, and W Shotyk. 2003. "A 6,000-Years Record of Atmospheric Mercury Accumulation in the High Arctic from Peat Deposits on Bathurst Island, Nunavut, Canada". Journal De Physique. IV, Colloque : JP. 107: 545.
  • Hueber, F. M. Early Devonian Plants from Bathurst Island, District of Franklin. Ottawa: Energy, Mines and Resources Canada, 1971.
  • Kerr, J. William. Geology of Bathurst Island Group and Byam Martin Island, Arctic Canada (Operation Bathurst Island). Ottawa: Dept. of Energy, Mines and Resources, 1974.
  • F.F. Slaney & Company. Peary Caribou and Muskoxen and Panarctic's Seismic Operations on Bathurst Island, N.W.T. 1974. Vancouver: F.F. Slaney & Co. Ltd, 1975.
  • Taylor, William Ewart, and Robert McGhee. Deblicquy, a Thule Culture Site on Bathurst Island, N.W.T., Canada. Mercury series. Ottawa: National Museums of Canada, 1981.

External links[edit]