Train Finally Arrives in Churchill

A freight train loaded with food and supplies pulled into Churchill three weeks late on Monday afternoon. Since March 1st, trains have been unable to travel the heavily snow – drifted train tracks than wind there way to Churchill. Two massive blizzards had virtually shut down the town and depleted stores of food and other crucial necessities ..such as beer.

train in Churchill

Train with supplies finally makes it to Churchill. Rhonda Reid photo.

snowplow on train churchill

Vintage snow plow on the front of a via train. This is what connected Churchill to the outside world. Rhonda Reid photo.

Cold temperatures like Monday’s -40 C prevail thought the clearing visibility has allowed Omnitrax, owner of the rail line into Churchill, the ability to clear the tracks and allow trains to arrive from the south. Milk, fruit and vegetables were gone and meat of any variety was in short supply. Beer, in the one liquor store in town was down to a few cases.

After Churchill was hit by the third longest – lasting – blizzard in town history, residents began digging out of the massive snowfall that was accompanied by 31 hours of zero visibility and 58 long hours storm conditions.

The landscape in and around town out past the airport and beyond has been described as a moonscape by some. Purely surrealistic conditions!

Churchill blizzard

Blizzard ravished Churchill. Heidi Den – Haan photo.



Churchill Blizzard Finally Subsides

Environment Canada defines blizzard conditions as visibility is less than 400 m resulting from blowing and/or falling snow for a minimum of four hours. Well, Churchill endured these conditions and more for over 56 hours and now the digging out begins.

Between 9 a.m. Tuesday and 5 p.m.Thursday the town and region was under siege from mother nature’s wrath and was under full blizzard conditions. Now the town looks like the north pole. Wind and frigid conditions have prevailed hindering clean – up efforts and it will be awhile before the town is functioning normally.

Peak gusts of 105 km/hr kept the town at a standstill with only the health center open after the loading dock was cleared and used as an entrance for patients. As usual in Churchill, snowfall will be hard to measure within town limits as the wind gusts move the snow into massive drifts. More accurate measurements can be found in the boreal forest but hard to reach for sure.

These photos are pretty unbelievable and are the most snow we have seen from one system in decades! What a ride the last few days have been for all the hearty Churchillians! We should be getting some epic northern lights shots within the next week with unique snow formations in the frames.

churchill blizzard

An eight-foot tunnel of snow to get into the house! Kelly Turcotte photo.


churchill blizzard

Churchill’s loader clearing the streets finally. Jodi Grosbrink photo.


churchill blizzard

No way out of the human door even. Jodi Grosbrink photo.


Churchill blizzard

Snow piled up in Churchill all the way to second story of apartments. Jodi Grosbrink photo.


churchill blizzard

Churchill is surely snowbound. Jodi Grosbrink photo.


churchill blizzard

Engine compartment of a Churchill vehicle. Belinda Fitzpatrick photo.

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