Peterson's Point Lake Lodge

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Canada’s Wild Arctic – Northwest Territories Barrenlands

Inukshuk on top of hill in  the NWT barrenlands

It’s no wonder that you might feel like you’re walking on a land before time while you’re in the barrenlands. This is where time is told in earths history, rocks near Peterson’s Point Lake Lodge have been dated over 3.2 billion years old and, not too far away, is the Acasta Gneiss where the world’s oldest rock was dated around 4 billion years old.

The barren lands is defined as a large area of tundra. It’s an amazing feature in and of itself and supports a unique ecosystem. Three seasons, spring, summer and fall (autumn), are condensed, and after the nine months of winter this land bursts with life. As the snow thaws and ice melts, it reveal lakes filled with a bounty of fish, providing the best trophy lake trout fishing experiences. The ground reveals a landscape covered with dwarf shrubs, grasses, lichens, mosses and minutes plants, it’s a naturalist paradise. It’s also home to a variety of wildlife, birds, insects, some migrate through the area, others inhabit the area seasonally and few stay over the winter.

Innumerable bodies of water and legendary rivers, such as the Coppermine River flow throughout the region. Back in 1821 during Sir John Franklin first overland trip to the Arctic Coast, he used the Coppermine River in search for the Northwest Passage as did earlier aboriginal peoples. Look closely when you visit as you may just find pieces of human history that date back hundreds of years.

Peterson’s Point Lake Lodge (PPLL) is located along the Coppermine River System, it’s nestled on the south-west end of Point Lake, where the taiga shield meets the barrens (southern arctic ecozone). Stunted forests grow in sheltered areas and valleys until they merge with the rolling hills created from glacial retreat.

As the midnight sun begins to subside, the landscape changes from the summer greens to reds, yellows, and oranges. The vibrant colours are breath-taking and offer incredible hiking and photo opportunities such as Peterson’s Point Lake Lodge Arctic Photography Workshop. Just imagine walking in a landscape of radiant crimson.

Wildlife – Caribou, Grizzly Bears, Wolves, Moose, Wolverine & More

Every summer barren-ground caribou migrate from the calving ground near the Arctic Coast towards the treeline. Peterson’s Point Lake Lodge lies in the midst of their migration route. Travelling along time honoured trails caribou pass though the Point Lake area each season. You can see their trails carved into the landscape. Wolves inhabit the area and den in nearby sand eskers, following their primary food source, caribou. Grizzly bears, moose and the elusive wolverine can be seen on the rolling terrain near the shore of Point Lake or foraging in the valleys where stunted trees and dwarf willow grow.

Smaller mammals like the Sic Sic, Arctic Hare, Red Fox, Otter and Weasel can also been seen by those with sharp eyes and migratory birds like falcons, hawks, eagles, swans, loons, ptarmigan, sparrows and warblers are commonly sighted around the lodge. It’s a true barrenland arctic photo safari and nature lovers dream.

Tour the barrens with our amazing trips: Summer Fishing, Autumn Hiking, Fall Photography and Autumn Aurora

The Northern Lights – Aurora Borealis

Beyond the beauty of the land, the night sky is awe-inspiring. On those clear dark sky nights, the aurora can be seen in ever changing displays from arcs, bands, rays, pillars (curtains), diffuse and coronas. The backdrop to natures light show, is a dark, starlit sky, that stretches unrestricted from one horizon to the next. It’s magical to see the northern lights, which can easily be viewed with the naked eye. However, with a little help from a camera, you should be able to capture the different shapes and colours which range from white, greens, pinks, purples and reds.

The relatively dry (semi arid) climate, enhances the night sky viewing, as does the sweeping landscapes, and a lake right outside your cabin for reflections; the sheer number of stars and milky way photography will just add to your night time shooting experiences.  

Take advantage of this remote, uncrowded and beautiful location to experiment with light painting, star-trails, time-lapse or just sit back and enjoy the show. Read more about why we think our aurora lodge is the best place to see northern lights here.

There are only three dates available to view the northern lights, during the Arctic Photography Workshop (2 dates only) or Aurora Experience (1 date only). These trips are scheduled to correspond peak of the autumn colors, wildlife and aurora viewing opportunities.

For more information about our extraordinary trips contact us

Updated June 7, 2024

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