From Disinterested Narwhals to a Sinister Fox, the Tale of the Northwest Territories Coat of Arms
Narwhals are not just in the opening scenes of Elf (truly great movie, by the way). They also begrudgingly adorn the crest of the Northwest Territories coat of arms. Although, maybe their expressions are less about disinterest and more about intense and serious focus since they have been charged with the important task of guarding the blue compass rose between them for all eternity. The compass rose symbolizes the magnetic North Pole, which was once located in the Northwest Territories.
Below the narwhal centurions is a squiggly blue line representing the Northwest Passage that cuts through the white polar ice pack. The other squiggly line dividing the red and green portions of the shield represents the tree line. The green symbolizes the forested section south of the tree line, and the red symbolizes the northern tundra. The gold rectangles represent minerals and the face of the white arctic fox represents fur; both minerals and fur were crucial resources to provide a source of income in the Northwest Territories. Fun fact: this coat of arms is one of only three provinces without a royal symbol adorning it.
Random Northwest Territories Factoids
Here's a chilly fact - Yellowknife, the capital of the Northwest Territories, is the coldest city in Canada! Its average annual temperature is minus 5.4 degrees Celsius, and its average evening temperature in the winter months is minus 29.9 degrees Celsius. I would plan on wearing two pairs of socks if venturing outside. Brrr! Another interesting tidbit is that approximately $1 billion of the Northwest Territories' $4.7 billion gross domestic product comes from diamond mining. So you might be cold, but at least you will have some bling to show for it.