A researcher medevaced from an island in Hudson Bay over the weekend had been struck by a boulder the size of a refrigerator, says one of the man's rescuers.

Travis White, 31, was with a group doing bird research on Digges Island, north of Ivujivik, Que., when the accident happened Saturday.

Luc Coates, a Royal Canadian Air Force helicopter pilot stationed in Gander, N.L., says the group of researchers were going down cliffs and had set up an anchor system with a rope to go down some steep terrain. They had set up an anchor around a boulder, which dislodged, rolled and struck White.

White was severely injured but conscious, according to Coates.

He says a Canadian Forces search and rescue Hercules from Winnipeg arrived first on the scene.  He says two technicians parachuted down to the island to assist White.

"The island was in and out of fog and it was nighttime as well when they parachuted in," he said. "It is also mountainous terrain so it was pretty challenging but they managed to do good and land near the patient and give him a hand."​

The helicopter crew arrived three hours later and were able to find a clearing in the fog so they could land near the injured man. 

White was flown by helicopter to Puvirnituq, Que., where he was transferred to the Hercules and taken to hospital in Winnipeg.