Site: CAM Main



  • CAM-MAIN on CAMBRIDGE BAY, Canada, is situated on 1627 acres along the coastal margin of an extensive, rolling plateau which rises gently inland from the top of steep cliffs (40 to 80 feet high) boardering the western arm of the bay. This Main Radar Station, located approximately 100 feet above sea level, contains the data center for the military CAM Sector, but does not support a contractor’s sector headquarters group. The surface of the terrain is broken by innumerable swamp-margined lakes and ponds. Mount Pelly, about 12 miles northeast of the site is 675 feet high and represents the highest point in this region of Victoria Island. The drainage pattern in the immediate vicinity of the station develops through a chain of lakes to the sea. Vegitation is scant.


  • Annual precipitation, including snowfall, is approximately 5.5 inches, being heaviest in July and August and least in February. Snowfall is greatest in October and November and averages about 29 inches a year. Absolute minimum and maximum temperatures are minus 62 and plus 77 degrees Fahrenheit respectively.


  • Potable water is pumped from a lake to the station through a heated pipeline.

Site Building Layout Diagram.


Satellite Image – High level.

Satellite Image – Close-up.

Click to enlarge.

Full size photos (below).

Christmas Menu cover 1969. Courtesy Chris Bentley.

Christmas Menu 1969. Courtesy Chris Bentley.

Ambrose & Annie Aknavigak, Dec31, 2006.

James Jennings 1959 (approx) .

CAMMain and town

Lights of the village of Cambridge Bay in the background. Courtesy of Marty Atherton.

“Official” Site Entrance Sign taken 14 May 2000. Courtesy Dan McIsaac.

Air Terminal building & Hangar 14 May 2000. Courtesy Dan McIsaac.


Four pages from Arctic Star handout 01 Mar 1971 Courtesy Bob Schmidt.

Cover Sheet.

Welcoming Letter.

List of attendees and room assignments.

List of station personnel.

Construction Era Photos for CAM-Main.
The pictures below were selected from the extensive collection of Markham Cheever, the DEWLine’s Superintendent of Construction from 1953 to 1957, before the Line went operational. (Click on picture to enlarge.)

The People
The people in the photos below, also from the Markham Cheever collection, are displayed in the hopes that someone may recognize a father, grandfather, or friend who was involved in the construction of this particular DEWLine site. (Click on picture to enlarge.)