Celebrating the Return of the Sun…

The sun has been peaking over the mountains into town so that we can see it for the last 10days or so.  I’m really enjoying how in the morning it shines on my face every morning for a little while, although it is a tad annoying because it still hits my computer screens making it hard to do work…thank goodness for blinds!

This afternoon Pangnirtung celebrated the Sun’s return…with some games on the fiord! I bundled up with my warm gear and headed down to the fiord. Even though it was around -29C…it was time to go out and celebrate the sun!

It was fun to play with my shadow, it’s been awhile. (also enjoying the low sunlight for the long-lean-shadow!)

Explaining the changes of seasons from dark to light…is hard to do.  If you haven’t lived through 24hr darkness it’s hard to explain. (SIDE NOTE: in Pang we  don’t experience a true 24hour dark period–it’s only about 20hrs…with twilight happening for a few hours on the shortest day.  But the sun doesn’t rise over the mountains surrounding Pang from end of November until mid February).   There is this sense of waking up and pure joy you get when you start to see the sun back in the sky! I was lucky I was in the south, in Ontario, for most of the dark days…but returning to the darkness was just as hard!  I’m not doing a great job explaining…so I’ll let my photos do the talking! I think my self-portrait smile says it all….

People arrived on foot, on skis, on skidoo and  kamotik, and there were a few vehicles that drove out onto the ice too! I walked out…trying not to slip on the icey road in my kamiks! 

My view as I walked through the pack ice. 

Kids playing on the pack ice…that builds up in the tidal flat area along the fiord.  Basically with the tide changes even in the winter…it pushes the ice up into crazy stacking ice formations as the ice cracks!

Here’s a group shot of the some of the people that came out to celebrate the return of the sun… as you can see even some dogs came out to join our celebrations! 

Yep, it’s totally true…when you are celebrating the return of the sun…you need to take as many cheesy self-protraits of yourself basking in the light.  And maybe imagining yourself on a different beach..with a few less layer of clothing! 

The skin tent that was made this past summer… was brought out to be a ‘warm-spot’ and place where tea and bannock were! 

Then there were the games… top left-a dice game…roll a 4 and you are out…until there is only 1 person left! top right- people dressed in various fur clothing! Bottom left- some of the kids did a pyramid! Bottom right- a game of frisbee (that’s the black dot in the sky of the photo) and some skiers off in the distance(the small ant like specs in the background)…

There were three races…one for the women, one for the kids and one for the men-(that’s what the photo below is)…

I participated, I wasn’t the last in the woman’s race…nor was I the first…and I didn’t fall down, even though I was running in my kamiks! 

Waiting for the games to start… 

Traditional fur made Amauti…designed to have an extra ‘pocket’ to so that the woman’s baby is held against the mom’s back.  This little baby slept for most of the celebration but popped out to say hello later! 

It was a fun afternoon… and am so glad the sun is back!  It really makes the -30C days feel a wee bit warmer! Here’s one last photo I took looking towards Mt. Duval.

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7 thoughts on “Celebrating the Return of the Sun…

  1. Ryan Bealer

    Seeing that pack ice picture reminded me of the ice south of Wawa… While there isn’t a tide on lake Ontario(?), in the spring the ice would form mountains on the shore somehow. Never could figure that out…

    Reply
    1. SarahontheRoad Post author

      Hey Ryan… the ice south of Wawa is on Lake Superior, not Lake Ontario(that’s near Toronto)! that’s your geography lesson on the great lakes for a Saturday afternoon… The ice stacks like that on the shores in the spring…because when the ice starts to break up because it’s getting warmer…with waves and wind… often it pushes the pieces onto the shore…and they stack like that! I have memories of being at my cottage after a wind storm in the spring.. and the ice from the lake was all stacked higher than 6 or 7feet on our beach! Nature is a pretty awesome thing eh?

      Reply
  2. Hemborgwife

    While in Southern Sweden we do not get as much darkness the majority of winter days are dark and now with the sun coming into the afternoon I would love to do some games to celebrate!

    Reply

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