Auyuittuq National Park is located on the Cumberland Peninsula. This is located in the southeast part of Baffin Island. It has a total size of 20,500 square kilometers, making it the fifth largest in Canada National park.
Auyuittuq National Parkhas gradually developed into a national park. The first legal requirements were laid in 1972. The park opened its gates just four years later and received its current status as a national park of the Canadian territory of Nunavut on February 19, 2001.
Landscape of the Auyuittuq National Park
The area of today’s Auyuittuq National Park is estimated to be over 3 billion years old and has changed over the course of the Time developed through various geological events. Here you can find rugged rock landscapes from the Precambrian Canadian shield. These rise vertically up to 2,000 meters from the ground. The sight of this natural wonder is incredible. The peaks of these rock formations usually have tabular granite rock walls and wide trough valleys. According to scientists, these primary rocks were previously covered with oceanic rock sediment. These were swept away when the ice sheets retreated around 10,000 years ago. So the granite rocks eroded and got their current shape.
The park has three lakes. The Crater Lake, the Summit Lake and Windy Lake. These only emerged about 100 years ago. At that time the glaciers retreated, leaving behind scree and gravel mountains. These dammed up the condensation and created the lakes.
Even today, a quarter of the area is covered by the Penny ice cap. Some of the glaciers are up to 2,100 meters high and up to 300 meters thick. They actually come from the Ice Age.
This is why the park was given the name Auyuittuq by the Inuit, which means “land that never melts” in German.
Animals in the Auyuittuq National Park
There are many snow owls in this area. Lemmings are also represented above average. Since the vegetation is particularly sparse here, appropriately adapted animal species also live here. Often you can find mountain hares, arctic hares, ermines, weasels, ground squirrels, red foxes and arctic foxes. Barrenland-Karbius also occur occasionally. Only 28 species of birds are found in the park. These include predominantly birds of prey such as gyrfalcons and peregrine falcons. Water birds such as ice gulls, eider ducks and Canada geese have also found a home here.
Many marine mammals that are typical of this region live in the sea. Bearded seals, ringed seals, harp seals and walruses have settled here in abundance. Bowhead whales, narwhals and white whales also feel at home in the coastal region. Of course, polar bears also live here, and they feel comfortable in this environment.
Tourist national park
If you want to travel the Akshajuk pass, it is best to switch to skis or snowmobiles. In late spring itself offers the best, because then is the hardest cold vorrüber. If you still want to be out on foot, you should do so by July wait. However, hikers should note that the access to the north side freezes over earlier and breaks up later than the one on the south side. Refuge huts from the park were set up at daily intervals to provide accommodation for the hikers.