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Arctic Circle: Birth and Rebirth in the Land…

Arctic Circle: Birth and Rebirth in the Land of the Caribou

by Robert Leonard Reid

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Every year without fail, caribou from the Yukon and Alaska set off in early April to a small corner of the Arctic Circle to give birth to their young. The journey – an ordeal of mountains and blizzards, ravenous wolves, scant forage, and river crossings with ice chunks the size of pickup trucks – is the longest migration of any land animal on earth. Despite the formidable obstacles, the females find their way to the calving grounds on the coast of the Beaufort Sea, deliver their calves in June, and then begin their long journey home. This is their story, told by an author who travels to the Arctic in his seventh decade with his son to “witness a few
moments of this endless turning circle of birth and rebirth” and to answer the question, “What is the true nature of the North?” Is it the good and generous land of which the Inuit sing, or, in the words of Arctic explorer, Elisha Kent Kane, “Horrible! Horrible!” a dwelling place of darkness and death? Personal and profound, chock-full of adventure, literary references, natural history, and ecological concerns, Mr. Reid's memoir is moving and poignant, evocative and cautionary. Arctic Circle is a book, in short, that every reader concerned with the fate of the Far North should embrace.
  drgodine | Jan 10, 2008 |
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Robert Reid made a long-wished for journey to above the 55th parallel in the Arctic. He found the fascinating porcupine caribou who make the longest land migration of any animal to their "Ivvavik", Inuit name for the place they give birth and raise their young.… (more)

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