Churchill Journals

Across the tundra to Hudson's Bay

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An August 1997 trip to Churchill by Languedoc

Fort Prince of Wales National Park Photo, Churchill, Manitoba More Photos
Quote: An account of riding a train from Winnipeg to Churchill on Hudsons Bay when the polar bears were away on vacation.

Across the tundra to Hudson's Bay

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Overview

Quote:
The point of the trip for me was the trip itself, riding the VIA Rail train two days and two nights across the seemingly endless tundra. Since the train leaves Winnipeg after dark, it is a surprise to wake up and find yourself literally in the middle of nowhere, flat tundra and lakes of all sizes in all directions.Quick Tips: Bring sturdy clothes, heavy and waterproof walking shoes or boots, layers of other clothing. Also bring mosquito repellant and you might even consider a hat with mosquito netting attached. If the wind isn't blowing, the mosquitoes will be swarming.Best Way To Get Around: Those special monster busses built strong enough to withstand even the most angry polar bear...Read More

Tundra Inn

Hotel

Quote:
The Tundra Inn is like most hotels in small northern towns; worn by the years, unpretentious, comfortable and insulated for the subarctic conditions. The rooms are large, and the staff courteous and relaxed.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on August 24, 2000

Tundra Inn
34 Franklin Street
Churchill, Manitoba R0B 0E0
(800) 265-8563

Railside Food

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Restaurant

Quote:
This is in praise of the little cafes and bakeries along the railroad on the way to Churchill from Winnipeg. The train stops briefly in several towns along the route, and invariably a cafe or bakery is nearby. One should never let either escape when confronting them far out on the prairie. I found excellent chili to go in one restaurant, and in another that served pizza I told the owner that I'd bet she couldn't prepare a sausage pizza for me and have it ready before the train left. She asked if I wanted to make that double or nothing. I lost my nerve and instead ordered two pizzas for my traveling companions. She knew the train's schedule and I would have had enough time to write a letter home before...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 13, 2000

Railside Food
Train from Churchill from Winnipeg
Churchill, Manitoba

Fort Prince of Wales National Park

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Attraction

Fort Prince of Wales National Park Photo, Churchill, Manitoba
Quote:
The tour is in two parts. The first is on a large tour boat around the harbor area, and out where the small, white beluga whales feed and play with their young. The boat drops a microphone into the water so passengers can hear the whales talking to each other with their whistling and growling sounds. The passengers are put ashore at the park, an imposing stone edifice at the mouth of the Churchill River, built by the British for protection against the French, who didn't bother showing up. Due to the possibility of having polar bears join the tour, the park wardens are always in contact with each other by walkie talkie, and while one warden leads the group, others stand guard along the peri...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 24, 2000

Fort Prince of Wales National Park
Hudsons Bay
Churchill, Manitoba

Churchill

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Story/Tip

Beached for repairs Photo, Churchill, Manitoba
Quote:
If the polar bears aren't in town knocking over garbage cans and scaring the tourists, there isn't a lot to do in Churchill. It is mainly a port town and built there because the Hudsons Bay seldom freezes. However, there is one thing of great interest to me in Churchill, and that is the Town Centre. It is one enormous building, much like a covered shopping mall, except that this one has the main stores, the post office, the city hall, a playground, schools, a movie theater, and a magnificent sweeping view across Hudsons Bay. The other thing about the trip that makes it really worthwhile is the train ride. It is my favorite train ride of them all. It is like being in a David Lean movie as you go ...Read More