Today’s entry is all about the one location highlighted this week that I was the most excited to learn about. Most of what I know about the North West Territories come from one family that I know. When I decided to do these features, I knew that I wanted to include a place that most people are aware of but haven’t been in contrast to the large centers like Vancouver & Toronto. Yellowknife fit the criteria perfectly.
Luckily for me I knew the perfect person to ask my questions and was very happy when she agreed. Jeri not only answered over 30 of my questions but she sent me the most beautiful picture to use!
Kelsey (K): Can you tell us where you live?
Jeri (J): Yellowknife (originally Hay River), Northwest Territories
K: How long have you lived there?
J: 11 years. Yikes.
K: What is the weather like there today?
J: Typical October: rain, snow, sunshine- the weather cannot make up its mind on what it really wants to do.
K: What are the winters like up there?
J: Winter is typically cold. Legit -50 without the wind cold. The hoarfrost is always stunning. We get next to no day light- I am not sure how many hours we get on the shortest day of the year…maybe 6ish but I would have to look it up to know for sure. If it is over cast it is typically warm (for winter), if the sun is shining- it is fricken cold. Most nights, the sky is clear and the stars are bright and the northern lights are amazing.
K: How much snow do you tend to get there?
J: Maybe a few feet- again I would have to look up yearly averages. Enough to have to shovel on a semi-regular basis.
K: What is Yellowknife known for?
J: Capital of the NT, northern lights, gold range, bullocks, land of the midnight sun, fishing, camping, outdoor life style.
K: Are there local traditions or attractions that you could tell us about?
J: Folk on the Rocks- a huge music festival over summer solstice- it is pretty amazing with a lot of great local and national artists.
K: Are there any historical events that took place there that affected the whole country?
J: I am not sure if it affected the whole country. But we are sitting on enough arsenic to blow up the continent. There was a bomb that was set off at one of the local mines back in the day…but I think it was more local affected then Canada wide. So not totally helpful. I am painfully ignorant to a lot of local history.
K: Would you say that there is an image or item that symbolizes the region?
J: The welcome sign, buffalo air planes, aurora village, northern lights.
K: What is your favourite part about living there?
J: The Summers. There is nothing in the world that is more amazing then watching the sun kiss the horizon and start coming back up again. We are the land of the midnight sun for a reason. J We survive the winter to get to summer. Winter really is not that bad, you learn to make the most of it. If you don’t- you will HATE your life here.
K: What is something that you think everyone should experience about NWT?
J: The summer for sure; Camping for solstice; Lots of people would say Folk on the Rocks music festival- I find it over priced….so I always sneak in by boating on the lake near by. That way you can still enjoy the weather and music without dolling out $100+; The northern lights on a clear night (fall or winter); Bullocks- order the pan-fried white fish- the service is shit but the food is actually amazing. I think it was once voted the best fish in Canada in some magazine.
K: As a tourist, what is the first thing someone should do when they get to Yellowknife?
J: Depends on the person. The girls from work have the YK tour down pat. Lots of people go for dog sled rides, hike pilots monument, bullocks, gold range, go fishing, camping, etc.
K: What do you think is the most overrated thing about your region?
J: The amount of money spent by tourists to see the Northern lights
K: If you could live anywhere in Canada, where would it be and why?
J: I am not sure that I would go anywhere else. I think maybe BC to be around warmer weather and bigger trees (we are close to the tree line….so we have small shitty trees and a ton of rock/ Canadian Shield here). But I kinda love YK. It is total small town, but I didn’t grow up here so I don’t really “know” everyone here. It is small town enough that you would recognize a new car in town thou. I love my job and the people I work with- I am extremely blessed to work with an amazing crew of docs and nurses.
K: Where is the best place to eat?
J: Bullocks for fish
K: What kind of fish can be found in the area?
J: White, trout, pike, jack…I am sure a ton more. We are know for fishing….but I am not into fishing. lol
K: What does it mean to you to be from the Northwest Territories?
J: I am not sure what it means to me. I have never really thought about it before. Most people have no idea about the NT. They all think we live in igloos and drive dog sleds. I guess it means I am a true northerner. Survive and thrive…for all two seasons- summer and winter. Fall and spring are a three day appearance.
K: What does it mean to you to be Canadian?
J: To be kind. To be happy, supportive, and caring. Hockey, beer, and poutine.
A special thank you to Jeri for contributing to Lovely Littlest Life. She and her family are the most genuinely nice people you will come across so her recommendations can without a doubt be trusted. I know that if I ever make it up there I will be stopping by Bullocks for some eats!