A Wildlife Story
If you want to find “Shingle Point” using Google Maps. Shingle Point Waterdome - Google Maps
This place has two names; “Bar Two” which is the technical name of the Dew-line (DL) site or “Shingle Point” which is a gravel spit that is just west of the DL site on the oceans edge. Traditionally the folks from the Mackenzie Delta use Shingle Point as their whaling camp each summer to hunt beluga. As close as I am to the whaling camp and as many times I have worked at Bar Two, I have never been to visit the camp.
On this trip to Bar Two we are building a large pad and installing a fuel tank farm. I am the supervisor with my head down and ass up working the whole time. Lots of pressure, deadlines and long working days. At this time of year and at this latitude the daylight constant... it’s still light out, let’s just keep working.
This project was pretty much a blur, but I do remember the Caribou were passing through at this time. It was common to look up from your work and a Cow with its little one would be standing 20 feet away looking at you. They were curious. The Caribou were on the move and daily I would see random groups from one to a hundred animals. This was a very repeatable occurrence... then one day …..“Poof they were gone”.
Wally (sorry, I can’t remember his last name) was our “Bear Monitor”. We call this position on the team “Bear Monitor” as our main wildlife concern at Bar Two is the bear. Bears eat people. The proper job title is “Wildlife Monitor”. Wally came to us from Aklavik and he was a no drama kind of person. From the very first day I felt secure and safe with him on the project. Wally quietly went about his business.
Every morning Wally was out the door while we were still sleeping to recon the area before we even got our breakfast. He carried his rifle, a shoulder bag and a pair of binoculars that he had in constant use. Wally was very resourceful and at one point early in the project he got a ladder, climbing up on top of the DL buildings to get a better look around. This made me feel safe because if there was anything coming... he would spot that danger well in advance. Thanks Wally... great job and job well done.
The project was completed as they always eventually do and Wally said he would have his report ready for me in the morning. Never before had a monitor ever given me a report, I was as “curious as a Caribou”…..The next morning I got the report and was beyond amazed at the content. Who knew….. Again thanks, Wally.
All the Best, Jay Hambleton.