Ron Carlson Arctic Expeditions

Ron Carlson Arctic Expeditions
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Saturday, July 9, 2011

Video and Pictures of "Boat Place"

Included are three of my aerial passes over Boat Place (video link below is aerial pass number 3).  This third pass is closest and in that view, on the end of the small island spit, one can see what appears to be the remains of the lifeboat on sledge that the Franklin men were dragging. Below are some of the close up pictures (click any to enlarge).  Larger pieces that are revealed in the close ups look to me like the remains of a sledge. Maybe, maybe not.

Boat Place - pass 1

Boat Place - pass 2
Boat Place - pass 1 (close up)

Boat Place - pass 2 (close up)


  1. Ron,

    Those are quite remarkable shots, if indeed those are the sledge runners of the McClintock 'boat place' boat. Clearly the location was very different from the engraving in 'The Voyage of the Fox'.

    Even if you are thwarted in any other research this year, these pictures tell us a lot.

    Thanks and good luck,


  2. Ron, Thanks for sharing this interesting find!

    The wood looks like it's been weathered for a long time. It is possible that the curved wood pieces formed the sides of a boat. The sledge McClintock describes had 8-inch wide runners, shod in iron and were apparently flat. On the other hand the men encountered at Washington Bay may have had a second, smaller, sledge that was used solely for moving supplies.

    This may be one of the sites discovered during the 1990s. (See Franklin Trail: It doesn't seem to be the site found by Beattie since he mentioned no significant timbers. The remains of the boat found by Schwatka were at the bottom of a deep inlet. Not on an islet.

    In that past, every time a boat place was found in Erebus Bay, everyone used to assume it was McClintock's boat place.

  3. I am not an expert on what it really is, but guessing it was from one of the Franklin Expedition's lifeboats. Hopefully someone can shed some more light on it through this or other blogs. I would guess to a degree of 99.99 percent that it must have been previously discovered. Although it is on a tiny island, the shorelines must have been combed by David Woodman led groups or one of the other previous ground troop expeditions.

    Unfortunately, believe it or not, I wasn't actually surveying or I would have had my Nikon D700 in the front seat (somewhere around 25 megapixel full frame, it was in the back of the plane) with my high end mono lens - you could have then seen the grain in the nails. All I had access to was my little pocket Sony "Cybershot" camera...not bad though.

    Whatever it is, I am most happy to see that it still lays there, hopefully in an untouched manner. I do think that CLEY's rational to keep certain locations secret is good for all. This is why, an example -> When I was photographing Sloop Cove in Churchill, where Samuel Hearne famously etched his name in the rock (which is still clear as a bell to this day, an exquisite piece of artwork by him, as many of the other old sailors there - posted earlier in my blog), of course some Moron five years or so ago had to carve his name next to Hearne's. A real hero. You see, there are always those few people around who want to wreck special things or are "nobody's" who feel the need to somehow "be somebody".

    Unfortunately, you can plainly see today where Parks Canada had to manually scratch the names over in each instance to make them indistinguishable to read. They still remain as scars on the rock.