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Henry Kelsey saw the Battle of Hudson Bay first-hand and surrendered to D’Iberville

Read the journal notes of Henry Kelsey from 1697 when he watched for 2 weeks as the French-Canadian Pierre Le Moyne D’Iberville attacked and captured York Fort. If you haven’t heard of Henry Kelsey he is also a great explorer. He is the first known European to see bison and the prairies of central North America when he walked from York Fort to Saskatchewan.

Kelsey 1697

Fara Heim presenting at Explorers Club in New York City February 18

If you are in NYC stop and visit.

ec expo 2015

Canada’s History Magazine

Check out Canada’s History website.

They did a quick review of our drone video at Hudson Bay. Yes, they commented on my unstable drone piloting. It’s a good view of the Marsh Point area at low tide on a perfectly sunny day with absolutely no clouds, no wind, and even better no waves.

Explorers Club Canada Newsletter

Here is a copy of the Explorers Club Canada newsletter.Far Afield Winter 2014

Fara Heim joins and attends the Association for the Advancement of Scandinavian Studies in Canada

In May the Association for the Advancement of Scandinavian Studies in Canada (AASSC) was held at Brock University. AASSC is an interdisciplinary group focusing on humanities and social studies related to Scandinavia. David attended the opening reception sponsored by Jan-Terje Storaas of the Norwegian Embassy. Another event was sponsored by Britt Bengtsson of the Swedish Embassy. Image our surprise to realize that Iceland is not considered a Scandinavian country and the Icelandic Embassy neither attended or sponsored any events.

While the government of Iceland was not involved topics included interpreting Icelandic Sagas about the Norse interactions meeting the American Natives (meaning Leif and Thorfinn who were Icelandic), Greenland settlements by the Norse (really begin the Icelanders) and Icelandic crime fiction and how it is affected by Norse manuscripts.

A highlight of the event was sitting down with Birgitta Wallace who had worked on the Norse archaeological site in Newfoundland and discussing “were we should look”. She believes that the Newfoundland site was, while built like a long-term settlement, only a stop along a route further south of the tip of Newfoundland. She has her thoughts on where that settlement is but it will be a difficult search. She did tell us to take a look in Ungava Bay.

One key thing we learned is that Norse artifacts aren’t being found by people looking for Norse artifacts but by people researching aboriginal historical sites. The top layers of a dig usually have recent to 1,000 year old artifacts. Then, if they have found Norse artifacts, they find things sandwiched between new and old aboriginal layers. I guess a good camp site is a good camp site and travelers reuse the sites! Birgitta’s opinion was that there are artifacts to be found but they won’t be attached to any permanent settlements.

We also discussed using satellite imagery and she suggested Lidar would also be a useful tool.

Spring 2014 Update

Hello fellow Expeditioners. I hope Spring 2014 finds you well and the Winter was not too harsh. It seemed like a very long winter this year.

The Fara Heim team took a several month break from field work after the Hudson Bay trip. Executing expeditions takes a lot of preparation and planning!!

For the next phase of our fieldwork we are working to create a larger team for the return to Hudson Bay and the Arctic. The search for the warships of 1697 is a mission that has to be completed and we are very close to acquiring the transportation resources we need to search for further signs of Norse exploration in Northern Canada.

In March, David and Mackenzie became members of The Explorers Club. They attended the annual meetings and dinner held in New York City. The meetings were held at the Explorers Club headquarters and the dinner was held at the Waldorf Astoria. Jeff Bezos of Amazon and Elon Musk of Tesla Motors/SpaceX were given awards. Buzz Aldrin was one of the dinner hosts and the attendees included the Prince of Bhutan, Richard Garriott de Cayeux (paid to fly to space out of his own pocket), and a host of other explorers. It was quite a motivational evening with the dinner and appetizers including many exotic foods.

The annual meetings were also very interesting as David and Mackenzie attended the New Members event. Several Norwegians were becoming new members for their archaeological research in Greenland. We discussed at length what they saw on the south and east sides of Greendland. Mackenzie met people who spent years living and working in Antarctica. David connected with Jim Enterline again and discussed the HF data and voice communication network available via satellites.

Captain Norman Baker delivered Flag 109 to the Fara Heim

Captain Norman Baker stopped into Winnipeg on his way back from another Explorers Club expedition and delivered Flag 109.  We took him on the Fara Heim expedition ship on Lake Winnipeg during the Islendingadagurinn weekend.

 

Hudson Bay 2013 Expedition

We have now decided to return to Hudson Bay in August to search for the ships sunk during the “Battle of Hudson Bay”.  This return to the Bay will allow the team to execute ground and sea search techniques in preparation for the 2014 Arctic trip.  We will set up our basecamp at York Factory on the Hayes River in northern Manitoba.

While we were preparing for our expedition down the Nelson River last year we learned of one of the most signficant battles in Canadian history and the largest naval battle in the North American Arctic.  It occurred in 1697 between one French warship and 3 British ships.  The British ships included a “ship of the line” and two merchant vessels.  Both the French and British warships were around 200 feet long.  Pierre D’Iberville was the French Captain who sunk the British warship, captured another and then ran his ship into the shallows to save his crew.  He then marched on York Factory and captured it.

It is an incredible story and the Fara Heim looks forward to reaching back the 300 years to Pierre’s maritime exploits on our way to the Norse exploration a millenium ago.

For more information take a look at wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Hudson’s_Bay

 

 

A short video of what the Nelson terrain looks like just before the river meets Hudson Bay

We are searching for the point the 8 mile trail meets the Nelson River.  The water flows out of the muskeg and the 80+ foot cliffs.  The water flowing out of the muskeg was really nice but it is eroding the bank.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Click here for Video: 8 Mile trail at the Nelson River

Here is a polar bear track.  We had seen a mother and cub the day before.  We camped about a mile upstream from this spot and awoke to tracks from a herd of caribou and a pack of wolves in front of our tent.  We didn’t hear a thing during the night.

Polar bear paw print

This is the old map of the area we were using.

8 mile trail from York Factory to Nelson River

Update to Fara Heim Foundation

Yes, you read that correctly. We are now the “Fara Heim Foundation” and applying for non-profit status.

We have not been very good at updating the Expedition Diary as we are constantly blogging onto our facebook page (daily). Since the post before this one we have:

1. Spent 2 weeks on Hudson Bay going by sailboat down the Nelson River to the shores of Hudson Bay and over to York Factory.
2. Have use of a 35′ Pearson sailboat that will be used on Lake Winnipeg, Canada to prepare for the 60′ Glory of the Sea.
3. Travelled to the Arctic to talk to Inuit Elders, spent time in researching in Boston (Massachusetts Historical Society)
4. Decided to spend 2 weeks at York Factory in 2013 searching for artifacts on land and sea related to the Battle of Hudson Bay. This search will let us test our land and sea abilities and gel the team for the 2014 Arctic expedition.
5. Started a monthly newsletter due to popular requests for information. The first one will be in May.

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