13-May-2003 -- While travelling from Saskatoon to Fort Smith to conduct whooping crane research for the Canadian Wildlife Service we stopped at the Northwest Territories Visitor Centre to drop off some information on the cranes. The visitor centre was closed so we decided to hike the kilometre to the confluence to see what it looked like in the summer time.
We traveled west on portions of 3 different cutlines each cut at some time in the past to indicate the Alberta/Northwest Territories border. Since the snow had only recently melted there were a number of wet boggy areas that we had to cross. We finally made it to the most open cutline and followed it until we were directly south of the confluence.
We then turned north and made our way to the confluence. Our GPS indicated that we were at 60 00 00.0 North and 117 00 00.0 West. The confluence itself was in a stand of small black spruce (average size was 10-15 centimeters in diameter), there were a few small aspens just to the west. The ground cover was mainly sphagnum moss with bearberry, under the spruce we also found two shades of green reindeer lichen. At the site we noted some of last years stems and leaves of bunchberry and some Labrador tea.
Since it was still early in the season a lot of the migrant birds had not yet returned. The only birds we saw or heard were Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Ruffed Grouse and Yellow-rumped Warbler. We found tail feathers from both a Spruce Grouse and a Red-tailed Hawk near the site.
When we arrived back at our truck we traveled north to Enterprise and dropped our crane information off at the main visitor centre there before travelling on to Fort Smith.