- Mar 2017
Sachs Harbour, located on Banks Island, is a small settlement in northern Canada visited by Berger during the Inquiry. The map below shows the location of Sachs Harbour and gives a sense of the breadth of the north Berger travelled. According to the Canadian census, only 112 people lived in the settlement in 2011. The vast majority of residents speak english today, though some report english and non-official language, probably a local indigenous language (Census). Permanent indigenous residents of the island are permitted subsistence hunting and trapping of wild animals to preserve their way of life (Parks Canada). Evidence of pre-Dorset inhabitation of the island has been uncovered and dated to 1500 BCE. Eastern Arctic Dorset, Thule, and Inuvialuit all have left physical traces on the island. European explorers came in the 1850s in an unsuccessful search for the northwest passage (Parks Canada).
Sachs Harbour is the administrative site of Aulavik national park (Parks Canada). The park covers ~4600 square miles (12,000 square kilometers) and is home to a wide variety of land animals as well as the Thompsen river. Over 68,000 muskox make their home on Banks island, the highest concentration of muskoxen in the world with a significant portion living in the park itself. The Thompsen river is the northernmost navigable waterway and home to a wide variety of freshwater fish and related aquatic organisms. An isolated wilderness park, the land and organisms that live there are set aside to conserve "pristine arctic environment" (Parks Canada).
Canada, Statistics. "Sachs Harbour, Northwest Territories (Code 6101041) And Northwest Territories (Code 61) (Table)". Statistics Canada. N.p., 2012. Web. 9 Mar. 2017.
"Parks Canada - Aulavik National Park - Aulavik National Park Of Canada". 2013. Pc.Gc.Ca. http://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/pn-np/nt/aulavik/index.aspx.