Hiking in Nunavut is a made-to-measure adventure in every community across the territory. From self-guided walks along the trails and paths of the community you’re visiting, to guided multi-day excursions into the epic landscapes of Nunavut, hiking is a popular activity for all.
In the capital city of Iqaluit you’ll find the Apex Trail, leading from the city to Apex. The out-and-back five-kilometre, ocean-side trail is accessible to all skill levels and passes the historic Hudson Bay Company buildings. Also near Iqaluit, Sylvia Grinnell Territorial Park has many hiking routes for all abilities on both marked and unmarked trail routes. Experience tundra meadows, the river valley, and unobstructed views of the area from high points in the park.
You can also follow in the paths of Arctic explorers Franklin and Amundsen by hiking through the Northwest Passage Historical Park near Gjoa Haven.
Other summer hiking and camping locations include the migratory bird wetlands of Polar Bear Pass near Resolute Bay or the shores of Whale Cove for sightings of beluga whales. Follow the Caribou paths near the communities of Baker Lake, Rankin Inlet, or Chesterfield Inlet for a chance to see this migratory mainstay, key for Inuit survival through the centuries.
For the more adventurous, consider a multi-day hiking and camping expedition through wondrous Akshayuk Pass in the mountains of Auyuittuq National Park. The hike through Auyuittuq crosses the Arctic Circle and passes magnificent Mount Thor, the world’s tallest vertical cliff face at 1,250 metres. July and August are the most popular times for hiking through Auyuittuq which, translated from Inuktitut, means “the land that never melts.” Hikes through Auyuittuq National Park typically use Pangnirtung as the starting point but Qikiqtarjuaq is the northern option for entry to the park. It is a requirement by Parks Canada that all visitors to Auyuittuq register at the Parks Office, attend an orientation seminar, and obtain a valid permit before entering the park.
Guided expeditions through the park are available from tour operators including Inukpak Outfitting and Black Feather Wilderness Adventures. More information about the park is available from the Parks Canada website at www.pc.gc.ca.