From October 12 to 15, a small group of Greenland youth from the Ummannaq Peninsula and their Danish leader René Kristensen were in Western Newfoundland to hike sections of the IATNL. They were joined by French film maker Marc Buriot and arrived from St. John`s where they attended an Inuit Studies Conference and screened local Greenland films, including INUK.
Day One at the Humber Valley Trailhead
Day One of the visit began when the group met IATNL executive members Paul Wylezol, Arne Helgeland and Kevin Noseworthy at the base of the Humber Valley Trail for a day hike to the 880ft (268m) Man In The Mountain Lookoff.
At Man In The Mountain Lookoff
The autumn hike through colourful foliage was anything but ordinary for the Inuit kids
Greenland Inuit youth Tim, Marius and Leo taking a break on the IAT Humber Valley Trail
whose home landscape - like northern Labrador - contains no trees.
Day Two was the start of a two day adventure to Gros Morne National Park, including an overnight stop at Paul's B&B near Arches Provincial Park.
At Arches Provincial Park (click to enlarge)
The day ended with a moose dinner provided by Kevin and cooked by Paul and Arne.
The Day Three drive through the National Park included stops at Green Point,
location of the Global Stratotype for the geological boundary between the Cambrian and Ordovician periods,
and Trout River, where the group walked the Eastern Point Trail.
View south from Eastern Point, Trout River
The IATNL hopes to connect the end of the trail to the park's Green Gardens Trail, where the grassy slopes are the historic destination of local sheep brought there to graze for the summer months.
Sheep graving along Eastern Point Trail, Trout River
The region is part of the Little Port Island Arc Complex and is included in the planned Cabox Global Geopark.
Returning to the Eastern Point Trailhead near the beach at Trout River
Though the walk was level and short, it worked up enough of an appetite for a midday lunch on the deck of the Merchant Warehouse in nearby Woody Point.
After returning to Corner Brook, the group attended the Films From Away night at Grenfell Campus of Memorial University, where they screened their animated film Kassasuk
Scene from the animated short Kassasuk
Scene from the movie INUK
produced in part by Marc near the Greenlanders home on the Ummannaq Peninsula.
After the screening, René and Marc discussed the making of the films and took questions from the audience.
Prior to the screening, the group toured the campus' telescope above the lecture hall, the largest telescope in Atlantic Canada.
Touring the telescope at MUN's Grenfell Campus in Corner Brook
The final day of their Western Newfoundland tour, the group travel down the southern shore of the Bay of Islands to Bottle Cove, where they took a morning hike along another section of the Little Port Island Arc Complex.
View south toward Bottle Cove (click to enlarge)
View north toward Island Cove (click to enlarge)
In the afternoon they set off on a hike to the top of Cape Blow Me Down
which at 2000ft (610m) provides a spectacular 270 degree view of the Bay of Islands and Humber Arm.
View of York Harbour and Lark Harbour from Cape Blow Me Down (click to enlarge)
2017 marks the 250th Anniversary of renowned British surveyor, navigator and explorer James Cook surveying the bay and most of Western Newfoundland, an event which will be commemorated by the IATNL and Cabox Aspiring Geopark.
It was a great four days of playing host and touring with the IAT Greenlanders. Many thanks to René and Marc for sharing their film and to Ivan Emke and the staff at Grenfell Campus for making them feel at home.
Hopefully in the not too distance future, a group from IAT Newfoundland can make a trip to the Ummannaq Peninsula to hike with them on a beautiful stretch of IAT Greenland!