View topic - Site of Bromley-Calder tragedy on the Back R

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PostPosted: April 19th, 2005, 10:59 am 
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Recreational canoeists Graham Peter Bromley and Ian David Calder (of Bromley Lake and Ian Calder Lake and topo IAN CALDER LAKE) died on the lower Back in 1967.
The obituary published in Polar Record (cited by Hodgins-Hoyle) gives the site of the tragedy as 130 km above Chantrey Inlet, presumably the S-turn about 13 km above the mouth of the Montresor.
On the other hand, Fred Gaskin's trip report gives the site as just above Wolf Rapids, 260 km above Chantrey.
I wrote the RCMP detachments in Yellowknife and Baker Lake asking for clarification but haven't heard back.
Can anyone confirm either of these locations?
Thanks, Allan [/list]


Last edited by Allan Jacobs on May 14th, 2013, 4:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: February 5th, 2007, 10:30 am 
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The site of the Bromley-Calder tragedy was neither Wolf Rapids nor that given in The Polar Record (Vol 14, No 90, 1968, p361; reproduced in Canoeing North into the Unknown). The Polar Record article is incorrect also re their predecessors on the Back and the source of the Back.

A note kindly sent by Bob Bromley gives the coordinates as
66d 05' 44.69" N, 97d 04' 06.29" W
The location is on topo 66I3, between the mouth of the Meadowbank and Mount Meadowbank; it is the ledge at 872/322 (NAD83, plus/minus 50 m) on the river right side of the island.
Bob adds that a cairn in memory of Graham (Peter) Bromley was built on Bromley Lake in 1987. Bromley Lake and Ian Calder Lake to the WNW were named after the victims.
Many thanks to Hugh Westheuser, John Stephenson and most especially Bob Bromley.

Our of respect for Bromley and Calder, I quote the obituary published in The Polar Record:

Graham (Peter) Bromley and Ian David Calder died on 27 August 1967 in a canoe accident near the mouth of the Back River, Northwest Territories, Canada.
Bromley was born in Grande Prairie Alberta on 11 January, 1926 but moved to Yellowknife , NWT, where he owned a hardware business founded by his father. He keenly felt the pioneering spirit, and generously devoted much effort to community affairs and to improving social and economic conditions in northern Canada. Calder was born in Croydon, England, in 1935. He was educated at Mill Hill, qualified in dentistry at Edinburgh University, and in 1964 emigrated to Canada. His dental practice, based in Yellowknife, covered more than a million square miles. Under government contract, he gave dental care to Eskimo settlements throughout the Western and Central Canadian Arctic, as well as to Indian villages in the vicinity of Great Slave Lake.
Both Calder and Bromley were expert canoemen, with considerable experience of northern rivers. They had studied the works of earlier explorers and delighted in retracing their canoe routes. In 1966, they accomplished a difficult journey from Fort Rae on Great Slave Lake northward to Great Bear Lake. In 1967, following closely the journals of George Back (1834) and James Anderson (1855), their only predecessors along the entire Back River, they set out from its source in Muskox Lake. After twenty-seven days of travel, some 130 km above the river's estuary in Chantrey Inlet on the Arctic Ocean, their canoe capsized in rapids and both drowned. Ten days later, the third member of the party, Bromley's 16-year-old son Robert, was rescued by an air search party. He had survived with food and equipment washed ashore after the accident.
The Government of Canada, in recognition of the public services and adventurous spirit of these two men, has undertaken to name two lakes in the vicinity in their memory.


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PostPosted: May 14th, 2013, 3:12 pm 
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Here's a link to a student's video on the Bromley-Calder tragedy.
http://www.canadashistory.ca/Kids/Young ... 13/Kayla-S
Barb Bromley's recounting of events is the main feature of the video; I hadn't known of her previously.
Also new to me was that the trip was intended as a centennial celebration.
Kayla has made a considerable effort into researching and presenting the story.

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A literal mind is a little mind. If it's not worth doing to excess, it's not worth doing at all. Good enough isn't.  None are so blind as those who choose not to see. (AJ)



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PostPosted: October 31st, 2017, 3:46 am 
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This is the new link to thestudent's video:
http://kids.canadashistory.ca/Kids/Youn ... 13/Kayla-S


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PostPosted: October 31st, 2017, 8:00 pm 
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Thanks for posting the updates link.

It’s a wonderfu student history project.

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http://www.JohnstonPursuits.ca

 


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PostPosted: November 2nd, 2017, 7:27 pm 
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I don't remember this rapid, I do remember wolf rapid. We looked for soapstone. climbed a hill to scout and came upon a muskox resting! I will look for photo

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PostPosted: November 2nd, 2017, 7:31 pm 
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PostPosted: November 3rd, 2017, 10:58 am 
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Thanks, David, for the map and for the photo of the furry(?) friend.
I believe it was the rapid on the photo-right (also river-right) side of the island where they died.
In 2005, we took the left channel and saw next-to-nothing of rapids, much less a ledge (as best I remember).
Yours in paddling, Allan

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A literal mind is a little mind. If it's not worth doing to excess, it's not worth doing at all. Good enough isn't.  None are so blind as those who choose not to see. (AJ)



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PostPosted: November 3rd, 2017, 2:23 pm 
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From memory I recall two rapids in that vicinity.
One was RL and it was easy but had volume. A slab of ice the size of a garage foundation surprised us by surfacing below the rapid.
The other was RR and I remember scouting it.
The two rapids may have been the channels on either side of the island.

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PostPosted: November 3rd, 2017, 6:51 pm 
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Alan "I believe it was the rapid on the photo-right (also river-right) side of the island where they died. " Could we be talking hypothermia? I walked the boat down some of these rapids and one time I was convulsing with cold. My wife had to change my cloths for me.


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