Environmentalists Marc Cornelissen and Philip de Roo

A dog travelling with two Dutch environmental researchers presumed drowned in Nunavut has been found alive, according to the organization that organized their .
Marc Cornelissen and Philip de Roo were on a two-month scientific study of ice thickness north of Resolute Bay when they disappeared. An RCMP  and rescue effort was called off Thursday, with police saying the  likely drowned.

RCMP spokeswoman Yvonne Niego said the territory’s services stop at search and rescue, and recovery options for the pair’s gear and dog were a “grey area,” casting the fate of the , strapped to a sled in the High Arctic, into .

Kimnik was found walking in the bitter cold after 4 days without food

However, the Cold Facts organization was able to organize a helicopter crew to rescue the dog, which belongs to the wildlife ranger in Resolute Bay. She was called “Kimnik” on the skiers’ blog, likely referring to “qimmiq,” the Inuktitut for Inuit sled dog, its breed.

The dog, referred to as Kimnik on the skiers’ blog, belongs to the local wildlife officer in Resolute Bay, and was recovered following a helicopter rescue organized by Cold Facts. (Coldfacts.org)

Tabitha Mullin, the dog’s owner, says she was happy to have her dog back.

“I was surprised at how good of shape he’s in after four days of not eating,” she says.

Cold Facts representatives say they are coming to terms with the loss of their colleagues, who “gave their lives for addressing climate change issues … and serving science,” said Marielle Feenstra, who is with the organization.

“It’s tough for all of us,” she said.

Explorer Matty McNair, who lives in Iqaluit, hosted the researchers before they headed to Resolute Bay, says she’s in “total shock” at the news of their disappearance and presumed drowning.

“I’ve known Marc [Cornelissen] for a long time,” she says. “We were on the ice going to the North Pole at the same time.

“You know, we’ve lost two really wonderful, excellent polar explorers. I’m really sad about that.”
Cold Facts says the dog was hungry, but doing well.

Efforts now focus on trying to recover the bodies of the researchers to help give closure to their families.