The Arctic Adventures of Bill White
Mountie in Mukluks
Almost everyone knows who Bill White is, though they may not know his name. Bill is the red-coated, dog-sledding Mountie who always gets his man. At least that’s how it seems at first glance.
Book DescriptionBut readers of Mountie in Mukluks will soon realize they are in the presence of one of the most un-cop-like cops who ever built an igloo. And by the time they have finished they will never be able to think quite the same way about the fabled Redcoats, or life in the far north.
During the 1930s, Bill White gave up trapping and joined the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, volunteering for arctic service. Arctic life was so dodgy in those days of the Mad Trapper and The Lost Patrol, the force couldn’t send you there against your will, so volunteering was the only way to get there. Bill started out crewing on the historic RCMP patrol ship St. Roch under the command of the legendary Captain Henry Larsen, but hungered for greater adventure and requested a posting ashore upon reaching Cambridge Bay.
Adventure he found: Mountie in Mukluks includes hair-raising accounts of a near-death experience under the ice on a frozen river; of a 1200-mile dog-sled chase after an arctic murderer; and of numerous fascinating encounters with shamans, telepathy and an Inuit way of life that has now vanished from the earth. White’s absorbing oral accounts of life in the old north, molded into lively prose by Patrick White, place Mountie in Mukluks among classics of arctic literature like Kabloona by Gontran de Poncins and People of the Deer by Farley Mowat.
Mountie in Mukluks is sure to cause a stir among enthusiasts of police and Arctic lore. As a cop who chose to adopt a Native lifestyle and was honoured with his own Inuit name, Bill White makes a devastating critique of the white settler way of life and its red-coated enforcers who disdained the traditions of the Inuit while simultaneously relying on them for survival.