National Geographic : 1968 Jul
To put your finger to its pulse, you must land at many throbbing little nowheres lost in a vast and virgin country. Scheduled aircraft reach some. But you get to most by bush planes, on winter skis or sum mer Ioats. The carefree Canadian bush pilot who pancakes you onto some frighteningly small frozen lake or rushing river is the same daredevil who flew in the tough men and equipment you now see producing wonders in the wilderness. Unending Miles of Muskeg and Water Simply to fly over this land is to learn a strange new love. You find affinity for its stark and staring beauty-its formidable mountains in the west and, in the east, its broad and monotonous tundra that stretches away in apparently infinite loneliness. In summer, you skim a wet green tabletop of spongy mossland and lake and bog. Ca nadians call it muskeg. And in winter, the landscape that flows beneath you is a pop-art floor covering, a psychedelic vision, a crazy dream. Could those be baby-blue watersnakes wriggling through an infinity of curdled milk? No. Just ice-blue creeks and streams winding their way through an endless traffic jam of snow-capped lakes. There may be 20, or even 40, million lakes of all sizes. They have never been counted (pages 14-15). It is a land scraped by eons of glaciation, scrubbed by monstrous sheets of ice. Crawling down from the north, they cut millions of striations, like fingernail scratches, into the rock. When the ice sheets melted, they left a land streaked with lakes. The entire expanse is a cold, wet desert. Its KODACHROMES BY DAVIDS. BOYER( NG.S, Airborne bloodhound, a survey plane dangles a magnetometer 450 feet above Story Lake, Manitoba. The in strument picks up magnetic variations that can point the way to deposits of nickel, copper, zinc, and lead. Simul taneously a camera on board takes aerial photographs. At promising lo cations, Sheritt-Gordon Mines Ltd. lands a geophysical crew (right) for a closer ground survey. On the trail of buried wealth, Lio nel Baribeau and Clark DeWitt adjust loops on their portable electromagne tometer, used to home in on minerals. If they find a lode, their company will stake a claim and bring in geologists and drillers. To discover and develop a major mineral deposit may take five or six years.