Heritage Resources Impact Assessment, BAR-C Intermediate DEW Line Site, Tununuk Point, NWT

Sean Webster (NWT Archaeologist’s Permit 2010-021)

In August 2010, Golder Associates Ltd., in conjunction with IMG-Golder Corporation, conducted a Heritage Resources Impact Assessment at Tununuk Point, located approximately 90 km northwest of Inuvik. Work was conducted on behalf of the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) in conjunction with a supplemental Phase III Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) being conducted in advance of planned remediation activities associated with the former BAR-C Site. BAR-C was part of the Distant Early Warning (DEW) system commonly referred to as the “DEW Line” that was abandoned by the federal government in the early 1960’s. The study was designed to re-investigate several previously recorded burial sites (NgTu-10 and NgTt-12) to ensure that these sites would remain undisturbed during the Phase III ESA and planned remediation activities. In addition, investigations were conducted to identify, record, and evaluate the DEW Line Site area for the presence of previously unrecorded archaeological sites and to provide recommendations to mitigate potential impacts if sites were recorded.

The field crew for the assessment consisted of Sean Webster of Golder Associates Ltd., Tawny Foote of IMG-Golder Corporation, as well as Rufus Tingmiak of Inuvik. No new archaeological sites were recorded as a result of the investigations. Sites NgTu-10 and NgTt-12 were re-visited and updated information was obtained. Site locations were provided to on-site Golder teams to ensure avoidance during the ESA program. Although NgTu 10 is located in proximity to areas that will be impacted during remediation, no direct impacts are anticipated to the site and a minimum 50 m buffer will be recommended for avoidance.

One collapsed cabin and an associated trash midden were also recorded during the field studies, and appear to represent the remains of an “Inuit House” typically associated with most DEW Line sites.

(Edited by Shelley Crouch, Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre)