The Ramparts

The Ramparts on the Mackenzie

Hire a guide in Fort Good Hope, Northwest Territories, to take you upriver to see the Ramparts, called Fee Yee, the towering, crestellated limestone cliffs that squeeze the huge volume of the Mackenzie River into a swirling chute.

Traditonal Sahtu stories tell how a giant, a Fort Good Hope cultural hero, formed the Ramparts. He threw rocks at a giant beaver, and then lay down for a nap. His head and footprints can still be seen. Giant beavers actually existed and are thought to have died out some 10,000 years ago.

Across the Mackenzie from Fort Good Hope is a huge marshland, a productive nesting and wildlife area, and now a protected area of national significance. Further downstream is a tiny village called Little Chicago. It was home to the Shigago Got'ine people, and earned its English name when prospectors on the way to the Klondike stopped there.