Ah the joys of summer.

This is a great time to get outside and enjoy some fresh air and sunshine. A great time to go for a walk or a hike, especially along some of the trails in or around Yellowknife. You can even pack a snack or picnic lunch and make a day of it.

People often like to climb to the summit of the nearest highest hill so they can get a scenic panoramic view of the area. I’m going to let you in on a little-known, carefully-guarded secret: the highest hill with the best local view is the mountain just outside of town known as the Solid Waste Facility Colossal Midden Pile.

Oddly enough, many locals and government officials just pretend it doesn’t exist. Yet it should be written up in all the tourist materials as one of the “must see and visit” locations in the city. Better yet, it’s an easy hike from anywhere in Yellowknife and it does have a spectacular view of the city and area. It’s great already but since garbage keeps arriving, I think the city should go higher and not spread out farther.

The garbage is already compacted into bales and all they have to do is to start stacking those bales. Since I like them, I think they should replicate a pyramid: a Mayan pyramid, with steps up its sides and a flat viewing platform at the top. It would be spectacular and a great landmark for the city. Just imagine a giant pyramid of garbage dominating the city’s skyline, visible from the airport and the roads.

Hikers, tourists, visiting dignitaries and politicians would all clamour to get selfies of themselves standing at its base and from its dizzying heights. It would become a “must go to” attraction and would become world famous on the internet and in the news. Yellowknife would be a leader in the green movement because we actually did something practical and scenic with our garbage. Being a pyramid shape would certainly tap into human history, archeology, spirituality and artistry. It would be very new age as well.

It would be a scenic lookout, a UFO landing pad and a place for city council and the GNWT to hold their special meetings, events and proclamations. It would be our very own oracle of wisdom, pomp and ceremony.

I think it is a great idea and has a lot going for it, plus it wouldn’t cost the city a lot. In fact, they could start charging people a fee to enter the dump and climb to its summit. At $5, $10 or $20 a head, the city could actually make some money, which would be a novel experience for the city, and they could vow to use the revenue to lower taxes and dump fees. So, it would be a win, win, win situation.

Also, because people visit the dump, the city should establish a walking trail around the dump for bird-watchers. Come see the flocks of gulls, ravens, sandhill cranes and the various birds of prey. It could show how valuable salvaging could be to the residents and businesses. The dump could employ salvagers and help everyone in town lower their cost of living. The city could even sell visitors a few souvenirs of the place.

From a geological point of view, the dump is a Garbolite or Grunge Garbage deposit. It’s something most people just don’t get to see up close and personal. Also, from the top of any high hill in the area when you look at the horizon it is remarkably flat because the area has been subjected to continental glaciation probably five times in the last two million years.

That much erosion has basically flattened what was once a mountainous area. They should have a sign showing this to people. So, you see our beloved garbage dump has a lot to teach and show us. Why not take a hike there this summer and enjoy the view?

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