Moosonee, Ontario

The first week of June I had the opportunity to travel to Moosonee, Ontario and, let me tell you, I had a blast! Just not for the reasons you might think.

Moosonee on an Ontario Map

First, a bit of information on the area. Moosonee is a little town in the far north of Ontario, Canada and about an hour boat ride away from James Bay. It is on the bank of Moose River and next to the island of Moose Factory, which is only accessible by water taxi during the summer and ice roads in the winter. It is a remote location, so much so that there is no direct road way to the town. The only way to get there is by train (5hr ride from Cochrane, ON) or airplane (approx. 1 hr from Timmins, ON).

The highlight of my trip was the flight there and back in a small, 9 seat plane. I’ll admit that I was as giddy as a little kid going to a park when I found out I was going to be flying out to Moosonee. Seriously, I had a hard time containing how excited I was and was getting sarcastic looks because of it. I had never been in a small plane before so check that one off my bucket list. I discovered that I like turbulence as it reminds me of roller coasters without the headache of the sudden jerking around. It’s more fluid movement, though I can see why some people may be afraid of it. You are being tossed around by wind currents while up thousands of feet in the air after all. Also it can induce motion sickness, which I have been blessed to not have.

Also, I got to look out the window and see the world below as the last and first time I got to fly was at night. Seeing things from so high up is an experience that took my breath away. The clouds were so white and fluffy looking, even when we flew into them and broke above the cloud line. I thought it would look like snow but I was wrong. Snow has a smooth sheen to it and look soft but clouds remind me of soft, thick cotton balls. No wonder people associate sleeping on comfortable beds as sleeping on a cloud, if it was possible to sleep on air and water droplets I bet it would be heavenly, wet but heavenly. Only downside would be that it’s very hot up there since the clouds don’t block out the sun. The cabin was boiling on the trip up to Moosonee.

Moving on from flying, the wildlife there wasn’t much different from what I’m used to but the trees. The trees in my area have started growing leaves but up there I think they had just started popping out. Even my pictures from the airplane are brown from the lack of green going on below. I can only what it would look like in the middle of summer.

An interesting fact for you all is Moose River flows with the tide. The morning tide brings the water out to James Bay while the afternoon tide brings it back in. By 2 pm you can see more land mass from the islands which was really cool. I was amazed when I first noticed the water flowing the other way as I’ve never been near the oceans or seas before. I had the opportunity to record some footage but by the time I realized it would be something awesome to show other people, I no longer had the chance.

Another fact, food prices are more expensive there. I thought food prices were getting bad in my area but after needing to pick up some breakfast food for the morning I won’t complain again. Here’s an example with the only price I remember because the difference really stuck out to me. Keep in mind these will be in Canadian dollars and some math will be involved. Bananas in my area are 0.89$ a pound, in Moosonee they were 4.89$ a kilogram. A kilogram is 2.20462 (2.1 for simplicity) a pound, so the cost of bananas in my area per kilogram is 1.97$ a kilogram. That’s a 2.92$ difference in pricing, you could buy one and half times more bananas in my area than up there. This is caused by transportation costs as it’s much father from any distribution center as well as it has to be delivered by train due to a lack of roads and not transports.

All in all it was a good trip. No issues, problems or emergencies but many new sights, experiences, and learning opportunities to go around. I can’t wait for the next adventure!

J. W. Goodwin

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