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c3 expedition

The icebreaker ship Polar Prince anchored in Powell River, B.C.

Four days on the Polar Prince

Video journalist Melissa Tait boarded the icebreaker Polar Prince for the final leg of its voyage

Melissa Tait is a video journalist at The Globe and Mail. She was recently aboard the icebreaker Polar Prince, which spent 150 days travelling along Canada's three coasts. Here is her first-person account of her time on the ship.

It's probably no surprise that four days on the icebreaker Polar Prince in the coastal waters of British Columbia was filled with rain and angry skies. Canada C3 is an expedition (supported by a grant from Canada 150 funds) that has carried 400 participants along all three of the country's coastlines to meet communities and learn about reconciliation, the environment and Canada's diversity.

The icebreaker Polar Prince anchored in Desolation Sound, B.C.

I boarded the ship Oct. 20 for four days along with the new participants on the final leg. We were first introduced to jellyfish and humpback wales in Teakerne Inlet near Desolation Sound, B.C.

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A Canada C3 participant kayaks near two humpback whales in Teakerne Inlet, B.C.

A humpback whale spotted in Teakerne Inlet near Desolation Sound.

We then visited the Tla'amin Nation, who has partnered with the community of Powell River in the Hɛhɛwšɩn Reconciliation Project to carve canoes in traditional canoe-making. The Tla'amin Nation also shared the story of burning the Indian Act in 2016 after signing a modern treaty that gave them self-governance.

Amaya Gonzales stands with her mother as drummers perform for a feast in the Tla’amin Nation.

Gary Gonzales (centre) sings with his daughter Amaya and partner Devin Pielle (right), of Tla’amin Nation.

In Howe Sound participants took canoes out into the waters to learn about the beginning of the area's recovery after years of industrial damage.

Members of the Canada C3 expedition canoe through Howe Sound on October 21, 2017.

The icebreaker Polar Prince anchored in Howe Sound.


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