Academic journal article Manitoba History

Thompson's Wolfish Ambitions

Academic journal article Manitoba History

Thompson's Wolfish Ambitions

Article excerpt

The City of Thompson has set its sights on becoming a centre of excellence for all things wolf, including an international centre for wolf study and habitat. Well-situated on the Burntwood River in the deep boreal forest of the Canadian Shield, the city is home to the University College of the North. The latest step towards its goal was hosting an international Wolf and Carnivore Conference held in Thompson this last October.

Beginning in 2008, the city has developed its 'Spirit Way', a 2-km walking and biking trail loaded with 16 engaging points of interest of art, heritage, culture, industry, geology and scenery. At one terminus is the famous giant photo-real mural of a wolf, a faithful reproduction of Canadian wildlife artist Robert Bateman's iconic "Wolf Sketch." The mural is the largest in Canada of this startling technology, in this case up the otherwise- featureless side of a large apartment tower. It is wonderfully effective, and a strong visual launch to Spirit Trail.

Also along the Trail is a fully-restored bright red plane, a Noorduyn 'Norseman', the single-engine Canadian-made bush plane that played a prominent role in the opening of the Canadian North.

Thompson was founded as a mining town for INCO, based on its rich body of nickel that was discovered in 1956. Nickel ore production continues with a million pounds of pure nickel pulled from its mines each year. …

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