Arc-la

The "arc-la," probably an English corruption of the Inuktitut word akłak, is an unknown animal said to live in the Cumberland/Kangiqtualuk Sound of northeastern Baffin Island. Though no detailed written sightings were described, it was mentioned by the Inuit to various explorers, such as Charles F. Hall. Hall was the first to mention the arc-la on page 105 of his 1879 book Narrative of the Second Arctic Expedition.

He described the arc-la as an aggressive carnivorous mammal, larger than a polar bear, with grey hair, a long tail, and thick, stumpy legs. Its hind paws resembled a human's heel, while its forepaws "were divided into three parts." The arc-la was said to be able to stand on its hind legs and would sleep in holes.

Interestingly, the word "arc-la" is similar to the Inuktitut word akłak (ᐊᒃᖤᒃ), meaning grizzly bear. Unlike the grizzly bear, the arc-la is said to be larger and more aggressive than a polar bear, not to mention the numerous anatomical differences. Finally, there are no grizzly bears in Baffin Island.

Arc-la