Most of Victoria Island, separated by the Prince of Wales Strait from Banks Island, falls within Nunavut. The exception is the island’s western corner, including Diamond Jenness Peninsula, where the community of Ulukhaktok (population 360) lies. Formerly known as Holman, homes here sit behind a gravel beach at the end of horseshoe-shaped Queens Bay and are surrounded by steep bluffs that rise as high as 200 meters (660 feet).
The village was founded around a Hudson’s Bay Company post in 1939. Inuit that moved to the post were taught printmaking by a missionary, Reverend Henri Tardi, and to this day printmaking is a major source of income for the community.
Ulukhaktok also has a golf course, the northernmost in the world. Playing a round of golf here is really something to tell the folks back at the country club; for the record, the course is at a latitude of 70’44’ North. In mid-July, the course hosts the Billy Joss Open (867/396-3080), attracting entrants from as far away as the United States.
Ulukhaktok’s only hotel is the Arctic Char Inn (867/396-3501, www.arcticcharinn.com, $219 pp includes meals). Scheduled flights into Ulukhaktok are three times weekly from Yellowknife with First Air (867/396-3063).
Whitney & Smith (403/678-3052, www.legendaryex.com) is a highly respected adventure tour company that includes at least one canoeing trip annually down the Thomsen River.
© Andrew Hempstead, from Moon Western Canada, 3rd Edition