Today at work we had an IQ Day. When I worked here in 2009 I got to participate in two IQ days. I went fishing in the SPRING and in the SUMMER. IQ is short for Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit is traditional Inuit Knowledge. Below is a bit more about these societal values…
Inuit as a people have a long-standing code of behaviour based on time-honored values and practices. These values were communicated to younger Inuit at a very early age through stories, songs, direct modeling of behaviour and legends that spoke of the success associated with remembering them. *Source*
Today my coworkers and I headed out on the land to go ice fishing at Iqalukjuak. Iqalukjuak means Big Fish in Inuktitut. It’s about a two hour (maybe a bit more) drive from Pang. Here’s a shot of the lake….
We met at the ‘beach’ early this morning around 7am before heading to the lake! There was some organizing of who was going in what kamotik or skidoo… then we were off!
Views from the trail… today was such an amazing day! Blue skies…great people…and tons of fish… It’s finally warm enough to be able to head out to enjoy the snow. And there’s still heaps of it up here!
The kamotik that was my ‘ride’ for the day. I actually don’t mind riding in them… it’s a fun, a bit bumpy… but alright. Today this was the part of the trip that worried me… I fell last week wearing my kamiks inside my friend’s kitchen. I fell hard, legs went out from under me…and went from standing to sitting with my legs out in front of me in a V. It was a HARD fall… and my tailbone isn’t happy right now. For the ride out I knelt in the kamotik, holding the sides of it to steady myself on the bumps… then coming home I was tried resting on my side/hip… and ended up coming home that way. So that’s the way I got around SITTING and bouncing on my tailbone for 2+hrs!
…it was amazing after getting to the lake, we started getting holes in the water…and fish started getting pulled out of holes everywhere!
My Iqalukjuak..it was the 2nd fish I caught today, but the 3rd in my life I’ve EVER caught. I gave it to my friend to share with her family–it was just TOO big for me to eat on my own and I didn’t want to waste any. Char is always better FRESH…For my family, don’t worry when I come south in the summer… I’ll bring some ‘big’ ones to share with you!
There were three prizes given today. 1. First Fish Caught 2. Biggest Fish and 3. Smallest Fish. I won for the ‘smallest’ fish… I’m holding it below! Also there’s a photo of me just after I caught my first fish…literally happened within the first 5mins of starting jigging!
These are the two ‘biggest’ fish from the day… Mine is the bottom one, not quite the biggest-but close! My coworker and I showing off our catch!
One of my co-worker’s made her amazing bannock…she calls it “Move over Tim Horton’s” because it’s WAY better than any Tim’s donuts I’ve EVER had!…Here’s mine that has a big bite out of it!
ere’s some views from around the lake….
We stopped at the River on our way back to town…overall it’s really shallow, and the ice was really thin with some ‘open’ spots! But that didn’t stop people from catching fish…I just wandered and took photos!
It wasn’t very ‘bright’ and the photo doesn’t really capture what I saw, but there was a FULL rainbow around the sun!
Then it was time to head home… a shot of me ‘kneeling’ in the kamotik!
Today was my first time on the Kulik River Trail… I’d heard stories about it. There’s a spot at the beginning of trail that’s incredibly steep, and very narrow… going up I was a bit freaked out, but totally trusted the person driving the skidoo that was towing the kamotik! Off to the side… is a very ‘steep’ crazy drop to the river below. Below is a photo from the bottom of the ‘steep’ part. (it’s hard to actually see the trail.. and how crazy-narrow-steep it is… the trail winds up to the top of this photo…) Someone has constructed a ‘fence’ to stop you from going off the trail and rolling off the edge!
The view from across the fiord, almost home! Today was an amazing day…I had a BLAST…the bumpy ride in a kamotik was so worth it. I had many reminders today of how blessed I truly am to live where I do, and experience the things I am experiencing. I work with some amazing people, it was great to spend a day out on the land fishing with them. Can’t wait until the next time.
UPDATED: I just realized I crossed off another thing on my “List of 32 Things to do when I’m 32”
…Number 19: “Go ice-fishing and catch an Arctic Char..or at least attempt to”… YAHOO for checking another off the list!