Shipping to Arctic Canada
Nunavut, Nunavik, Yukon and Northwest Territories
Getting cargo to the remote regions of Northern Canada whether it be in the Artic or sub-Arctic regions can be a challenge for even the most experienced of shippers. With minimal route options, the importance of preparation becomes heightened to ensure that your cargo arrives at its destination on time and on budget. Below we’ve outlined the considerations to be made when shipping north, and what the differences are when shipping to each territory.
Shipping to Nunavut and Nunavik
A more challenging route, most cargo bound for Nunavut & Nunavik will require sea transport, due to a lack of viable road infrastructure. These icebreakers load in Churchill, Manitoba and Becancour, Quebec. They make a variety of stops during their sailing including but certainly not limited to Iqaluit, Kuujjuaq, and Kuujuarapik.
Like Yukon and NWT, there are airfreight options to both Nunavut and Nunavik, with flights running out of Montreal and Edmonton to service the regions. These are ideal for smaller, more time sensitive cargo due to the limited cargo capacity on flights to these regions.
Challenges to Consider shipping to NT and Northern Quebec:
- Seasonality of Arctic Sea Lanes
- Vessel Schedules
- Vessel Capacity
Geography of Nunavut and Nunavik:
- Nunavut: Area that stretches across most of the Canadian Arctic. Port destinations are typically found around Baffin Bay and the northwestern parts of Hudson Bay. Destinations include Arviat, Iqaluit, Pangnirtung, Chesterfield Inlet, Kimmirut, Rankin Inlet, Whale Cove, Coral Harbour, Kinngait, Sanikiluaq.
- Nunavik: Area that covers the northernmost part of Quebec Canada (Nord-due-Quebec) bordering Nunavut. Port destinations are typically found along the southern short of the Hudson Straight and the southwestern parts of Hudson Bay. Destinations include Akulivik, Ivujivik, Kangirsuk, Puvirnituq, Tasiujaq, Aupaluk, Kangiqsualujjuaq, Kuujjuaq, Quaqtaq, Umiujaq, Inukjuak, Kangiqsujuaq, Kuujjuarapik, Salluit
Shipping to Yukon and the Northwest Territories
Yukon and NWT are the more accessible regions of the North. With road infrastructure from Edmonton to Whitehorse and Yellowknife, large cargo can be moved via ground with a transit time of 1-2 weeks from Edmonton. For smaller volume and time sensitive cargo, there are also air options departing from Edmonton. Naturally, due to the expansive landscape and limited flights, the cost of shipping via air can be quite high for even the smallest cargo.
Challenges to Consider shipping to YK and NWT:
- Seasonal Thaw
- Road Accessibility
- Flight Schedule
- Weather conditions
- Limited road network in the summer. Ice road network in the winter.
Geography of the Yukon and Northwest Territories:
- Yukon: Cities and towns include Whitehorse, Watson Lake, Teslin, Haines Junction, Carmacks, Faro, Mayo and Dawson
- Northwest Territories: Cities and towns include Yellowknife, Fort Smith, Hay River, and Norman Wells, Fort Simpson and Inuvik.