Welcome to Hall Beach
Hall Beach, or Sanirajak (“one that is along the coast” in Inuktitut) is located on the shore of Foxe Basin, a narrow strait across from Baffin Island on the north eastern tip of the Melville Peninsula in the Qikiqtani (Baffin) Region of Nunavut. Hall Beach was created when the Cold War triggered the establishment of a Distant Early Warning (DEW) Line site in the area in 1957 to help monitor Canadian air space in the Far North.
In the late 1950’s and early 1960’s Inuit moved from surrounding camps to take advantage of government housing programs, health care and opportunities for education and for work around the DEW Line site and the community of Hall Beach was born. The population of Hall Beach is 785 (2013). Hall Beach is one of the longest permanently populated communities north of the Arctic Circle. Hall Beach is also a northern transportation centre with a commercial-grade airport which can accommodate large jetliners.
Spread along a series of exposed sand and gravel beaches and backed by a soggy carpet of lakes and tundra ponds, the place may seem rather desolate. Yet, despite its bleak façade, Hall Beach can be a rich experience for tourists. The soggy Tundra dotted with ponds and lakes is the nesting habitat for a variety of migratory birds such as loons, ducks, geese and other waterfowl that return to the Arctic each spring. Hall Beach is also one of the few places in Canada where walruses are still numerous, and walrus hunting is a common activity between July and September.
Since the community is located above the Arctic Circle, during the year, it experiences the phenomenon known as Arctic Day and Arctic Night. During the months of July and August, the sun continuously and tirelessly circles above the horizon, not setting for about two months. This is the best time of the year for some great fishing and hunting. During the months of December and January, the region experiences the Arctic Night which again lasts about two months. Actually, the area never realizes a true night as there is some residual reflection of the sun below the southern horizon. This is termed as the Arctic Light and very characteristic of these latitudes.
The weather in this part of the world varies greatly between the summer months and the rest of the year. For about nine months of the year, the temperature seldom reaches above zero de
grees centigrade, with an average mid-winter temperature of -30°C. During December and January, temperatures can dip down to -70°C. This region is also very active with Aurora Borealis or the Northern Lights.
Each year on April 1, Hall Beach has a Hamlet Day festival featuring a community feast, traditional games and square dancing. Hamlet Day celebrates the return of continuous daylight from mid-April to mid-August.
The May 24th (Victoria Day) long weekend is the time of our Annual Fishing Derby. Each year Hall Beach residents of all ages get together at this time for a friendly competition of who can catch the biggest fish. The derby runs the whole weekend until midnight on Sunday. Then on Monday they hold the judging of all age groups to see who has the biggest (and smallest) fish. There are lots of prizes to be won and a traditional feast and square dance follows. Great fun is had by all!!!
Hall Beach is a great place to see walruses, seals, polar bears, waterfowl and other Arctic wildlife; fishing for char is superb here.