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Treasure hunting at the dump

Cara Loverock
Northern News Services
Published Wednesday, September 19, 2007

YELLOWKNIFE - Hidden among the garbage at Yellowknife's dump are some hidden treasures.

Despite the fall cold, people still spend hours sifting through piles of trash in order to find something useful, and sometimes expensive, that has been tossed aside.

NNSL Photo/Graphic

Andrea Camirand and her husband Lars Zeeuw check out some interesting items they found at the dump. - Cara Loverock/NNSL photo

A number of people were there over the weekend before the snow arrives, which will add another challenge to the hunt.

Stories of things found include more worthwhile finds, like antiques, gardening tools and even artwork, as well as the bizarre, like pornography and dead animals.

One woman, who did not wish to give her name while fervently rummaging, said that over the years she has seen many strange things at the dump, most memorably some sex toys and a dead dog, none of which she took home.

"I found a fox once, a stuffed one," said avid scavenger Lars Zeeuw.

His wife, Andrea Camirand, added, "We actually used it for a Halloween decoration. It was missing a nose though."

Zeeuw has also found some useful things, including a working lawn mower that lasted two years.

"A mounted raven," was the strangest thing Stephen Folkers can remember coming across.

"If you come here everyday you'll find the weirdest things," he said.

"A lot of people throw out newer stuff here, semi-decent stuff," said Ryan Thompson, who had found some speaker stands that appeared to be in excellent condition.

Most people comment on the fact that objects found there are often still salvageable and are probably tossed out to make room in a cluttered house or garage.

Justin Couch recently found a few good items, including a cleaner for car parts worth about $1,000, he said.

"We've found motorcycles and Ski-Doos. Just last weekend ... I found a 500-pound weight set," he said.

"I found a generator last week, perfectly working," said Paul Jackson.

The vast site has many areas to choose from. It is also popular for people looking to build cabins and other structures, as Jackson has done.

"I've built an entire shed from stuff I've found at the dump, even the windows," he said.