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Rekindling exploration

The Royal Canadian Geographical Society recently launched its new Expeditions Series — to encourage exploration in Canada by Canadians — by supporting three northern expeditions this past summer.

Antoni Lewkowicz, a University of Ottawa geography professor, received a $25,000 grant for the Society Expedition of the Year, financed by the RBC Blue Water Project, to study changes in permafrost conditions along roughly 1,300 kilometres bordering the Alaska Highway between Fort St. John, B.C., and Whitehorse.

The Society also sponsored the Ellesmere Light Expedition, led by photographer John Dunn, who hiked 750 kilometres across Canada’s northernmost island, traversing fiords, glaciers, rivers and canyons from the Eureka Weather Station to Grise Fiord.

Adventurers Laco Kovac and Lynette Chubb of Ottawa received a grant to trek the perimeter of the Pingualuit Crater (formerly known as the Chubb Crater and Cratère du Nouveau-Québec) and to canoe the challenging whitewater of Rivière Vachon in northern Quebec.

The grant recipients will return the Society flag they took on their expeditions at an Explorers Dinner to be held in Toronto next May.

The deadline to apply for a grant under the Society’s Expeditions Series for next year is March 15, 2011. For more information, visit the Expeditions Program webpage.

— Jessica Bell

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