Category Archives: Travel in Canada

Hello from Kuujjuaq, Nunavik (Quebec)…

This week I’m in Kuujjuaq, Nunavik which is located in Northern Quebec.  Did you know that there was Nunavut…and a Nunavik? Nunavut is the 3rd territory in Canada…where I live!

Nunavik comprises the northern third of the province of Quebec, Canada. Covering a land area  north of the 55th parallel, it is the homeland of the Inuit of Quebec. Almost all of the 12 090 inhabitants (2011 census) of the region, of whom 90% are Inuit, live in fourteen northern villages on the coast of Nunavik and in the Cree reserved land of Whapmagoostui, near the northern village of Kuujjuarapik. Nunavik means “great land” in the local dialect of Inuktitut and the Inuit inhabitants of the region call themselves Nunavimmiut. Until 1912, the region was part of the District of Ungava of the Northwest Territories.


Kuujjuaq  means ‘Great river’ is located on the west shore of the Koksoak River, about 50 km upstream from Ungava Bay.  Kuujjuaq was previously known as Fort Chimo…You can see on the map below the 14 communities that make up Nunavik…and see where Kuujjuaq is located.


Coming in for a landing I was excited…TREES!!! Yes, there are some small trees around and in town!


I have been to Kuujjuaq 3 times before…but have never left the plane, rather just waited to be ready to take off. (The first time was on my first trip North to live in Pang in March of 2009, the second was on New Years’ Eve 2009…when I was flying south to Winnipeg.  The third time was a few springs ago…when I couldn’t land in Iqaluit and we were diverted to Kuujjuaq for more fuel–then continued onto Rankin Inlet.) Kuujjuaq004

It was really nice to GET off the plane…and be able to explore this fabulous community!



The weather was so gorgeous… so warm and nice not to need a hat or mittens! Kuujjuaq006

Tuesday night I went for a walk with someone I met at the conference I was attending.  It was nice to walk around, get familiar with the town..and enjoy the gorgeous evening!  Kuujjuaq008

We walked down to the river and beach area.  I was reminded that my mum came to Kuujjuaq about 20 years ago at the end of August…to visit a friend.  She had lived in Haliburton working as a Social worker…but then moved north to Kuujjuaq, and invited my mum and another friend to visit for 10 days!  I’m quite positive there have been many changes in the past 20 years!

Kuujjuaq010 Kuujjuaq011

The youth centre was just painted this summer…lots of buildings are painted ‘graffti’ style…as a project for the youth to claim ownership of their buildings. Kuujjuaq012

It was great to visit Kuujjuaq…I met lots of great people. My brain was also stretched into trying to think/understand conversations in French.  I am no way bilingual… but have small understanding of French, but have limited vocabulary…sometimes I do understand but then respond back in English… for the most part it works!

Just before we headed back to the hotel restaurant for an amazing pizza dinner…we were greeted to this amazing site.  Hello, Moon…so nice of you to join us. Kuujjuaq017



Feb 6, 2014-walk in Pang 1

Well today is my second day of holidays!  Friday night I left Pang on the evening flight after work.  I think it was the first time that I had packed and cleaned my house for my house sitter….and finished it all about 5 hours before my flight (during my lunch break from work)!

I spent the night in Iqaluit with my friends and their two boys.  I love these two so much, they are such fun ages.  It was just a short visit but a good one!  Iqaluit FriendsIqaluit friends

Taking off in Iqaluit the wind was blowing the snow across the runway. There’s something about Iqaluit that the snow always blows just across the runway.  On my flight I bumped into one of my favourite flight attendants…I met her on my trek to Yellowknife last spring when I was trying to get home to Pang from Ottawa. It’s always fun to run into a familiar face…she also was working on the flight that I came north on last November. I love how the north is such a small community and you can get to know your flight attendants and crew. Snow blowing across the ground on the runway

Taking off looking out the window at the Sylvia Grinnell River…sylvia grinnell river

It’s been a great few days to start my holidays here in the south.  Sunday I went over to my brother and sis-in-laws to visit their new house in Newmarket.  Then last night I went over to have dinner at my Gramma’s house.  It was nice to visit her and Bart.  It was nice to be treated to two awesome home cooked meals and to some family dinners!

On Thursday early morning my mum and I are leaving the country for some fun in the sun!  I can’t wait to just lie on the beach, sleep in the shade, read books and drink fruity cocktails.  We are heading to San Salvador, El Salvador…I’m looking forward to a holiday.

I’m going to be offline over the next few weeks but have asked some blogging friends to stop by Sarah on the Road and share some of their adventures here with my readers!  I hope you enjoy them… as much as I did.

3rd Time’s a Charm

Yesterday evening I arrived home on the evening flight from Iqaluit…around 7:30pm. I was suppose to arrive Saturday afternoon but in fact arrived Monday night!  Travelling in the north sometimes can be really unpredictable.  The weather plays a major role if your flights will get you from Point A to Point B on the day you think you will travel*. Remember when I was trying to get home in May but ended up across the country in Yellowknife?  Do you know what the other funny random part to this story…my flight from Ottawa to Iqaluit–I had one of the same flight attendants that were on that trip to Yellowknife! So funny eh?!   (*There are also mechanical issues as well, but those are different sorts of delays!)

Let’s back-track a bit…I arrived in Ottawa on Friday and spent the afternoon picking up some last minute things to add to my luggage. Saturday morning I got up bright and early for my 7:15am shuttle to the airport.  All my luggage packed and ready to go!  (that’s 3 pieces of checked luggage at around 70lbs each…and 2 carry ons + my purse).  Every time I fly home I vow the next time I’ll have less luggage…but that is forgotten until I’m lugging the bags around. It was a gorgeous day in Ottawa…it was suppose to get up to 14C at some point on the weekend…but I knew the temps would be much colder when I got home!

Photos from before I got on my plane in Ottawa

The first hic-up in the plan was we had a delay leaving Ottawa.  One of the flight attendants was sick, so they had to get a replacement from the hotel to the airport!  That took just over an hour…but I was starting to wonder if I’d make my 2pm connection to Pang.  But didn’t stress too much…what will happen will happen.

TVs on the Plane

I was excited when I got on the wasn’t a normal plane used for the Ottawa to Iqaluit route… it had and inflight entertainment system!  So nice to watch a movie…ended up watching Epic… it was a really cute cartoon!

I spent some time using my new camera to grab some shots out the window…goodbye Ottawa.

looking out airplane window at Ottawa

Looking out at snowy tundra makes me so happy- because it’s just so gorgeous!  Looking out the window at tundra

Hello, Iqaluit…

Hello IqaluitAs we landed the sun was just starting to set…it was about 1:30pm! The sun was setting...


I arrived in time for my flight to Pang…but my bags didn’t make the flight…so they were going to spend the night in Iqaluit and follow me the next day!  The day was looking up… I was a wee bit bummed out because I was going to have lunch with good friends in Iqaluit but that was cancelled because of my delay!

So the weather was iffy in Pang…we were green carded at the gate…so that meant if we ended up back in Iqaluit the airline wouldn’t be responsible for meals & hotels.  We ended up circling at the mouth of the fjord for about 20minutes but the ceiling wasn’t high enough…so we turned around and flew back to Iqaluit.  That’s what I call a 2 hour fly-by!

When I arrived back in Iqaluit I called my friends and ended up going to their house for the evening.  It was great to catch up…and spend some time with them.

Bags in Iqaluit...

I was rebooked with a different airline that flew on Sunday (since my original carrier didn’t fly to Pang on Sunday!) Remember all those bags? and how heavy they were…they came too and from the airport….when I checked back in on Sunday, only to find out that the weather was still bad in Pang and the flight was cancelled.  I was rebooked on the Monday evening flight!

After a day spent in our Iqaluit office… I headed back to the airport for the third time. Hoping I would get out of Iqaluit before the blizzard that was suppose to happen in the next 24 hours.  I managed to fly out in the right window–able to leave Iqaluit but then also land in Pang!  I was lucky and ended up home…and even a lucky bonus the contents of my cooler were still cold (but not 100% frozen yet…).

When you travel anywhere you should always be prepared for delays…and have patience! And one friend in Iqaluit says I have the worst travelling ju-ju ever…and she says she doesn’t want to fly with me!

Might be time for a Road Trip?

A few days ago a friend of mine shared on Facebook a map they had created via Defocus Blog.  On the site you are able to create a map of all the states/provinces/territories that you have visited in North America.

You are able to ‘colour-code’ the map.

  • red for states where you’ve not spent much time or seen very much.
  • amber for states where you’ve at least slept and seen some sights.
  • blue for states you’ve spent a lot of time in or seen a fair amount of.
  • green for states you’ve spent a great deal of time in on multiple visits.

Map of North America-places I've visited


Seems like I have a lot of the far north covered on the map, need to go south and explore a bit more since it looks like I still have a bunch of North America to go and visit.   There are only 3 provinces left in Canada: PEI, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland & Labrador.  But a whole lot of spots still white in the US.

All I can say about this map is that it is starting me thinking about exploring some of the ‘white’ left on the map!  Perhaps some road trips should be planned for the future…who knows what the future might bring!

Yukon 2013

Photo Credit: Jennifer Eichenberg

Keno Hill, Yukon  (Photo Credit: Jennifer Eichenberg)

I realized today that it has been two months since I started my epic Yukon Road trip!  The trip was such an amazing one…filled with so many good memories and laughs.  Over the last two months this trip hasn’t been far from my thoughts.  I think a good holiday is suppose to be like that you fill up your memory bank so that when you need a little boost, you can start laughing about random memories with really good friends!

Indigo's RavensIndigo's Ravens

Throughout the trip I did do a bit of blogging and had heaps of photos from the adventure…tonight I went through my archives because I was working on another project and decided to post a few of them over here on “Sarah on the Road”…but with some links back to more photos and stories from the Yukon over at “Indigo’s Ravens”. Indigo's Ravens

So if you want to look at all the fun from the first day on the road…or adventures in Dawson City, the Order of the Sour Toe and then some Hangover Madness!
Indigo's Ravens

There was a race to be run in Mayo and exploring in Keno City!  Random times with bearded-lady-hats on the side of the road...With a few days rest in Faro and exploring the awesomeness of Kara’s hometown.  Indigo's Ravens

Then it was back on the road minus 2 of the crew to head to Alaska! Taking the White Pass train in Skagway... then a ferry ride to Haines, then exploring Haines, Alaska… the last travel day on the road!  Then there was two fun filled days in Whitehorse before the trip was over and it was time to head back on the plane.  Then there was a whole bunch of crazy things overheard by Little Raven on the trip! Indigo's Ravens

It was a gorgeous trip…so great to meet friends face-to-face for the first time…and the camping-road trip adventures was an awesome experience.  I just can’t believe it’s over…We totally need to plan another trip in another part of the country at some point in the future!  Until the next time I’ll have my memories and photos from the trip to tide me over! 

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