Wekweètì

Wekweètı̀

“Rock lake”

Population: 142

This smallest, most remote Tłįchǫ Dene community occupies a gorgeous setting on the Snare River as it weaves through sandy, rolling shield-country on the cusp of the treeline. No settlement is closer to the Barrenlands, nor to the diamond mines that are the NWT’s economic engine. Fishing and hiking here are ideal. Access is by air and, during some winters, ice road.

 

Location: 64°11′ N, 114°11′ W
Elevation: 368 metres
Population: 145
Name means: "Rock lake”
Former name: Snare Lake (changed 1998)
Setting: Amidst jackpines, cranberry bushes and rolling shield-rock on the north shore of Snare Lake, not far from where the boreal forest gives way to the treeless Barrenlands
Languages: Tłįchǫ, English
Ethnicities: Tłįchǫ Dene
Getting here: By air from Yellowknife, or, in most winters, by ice-road from Behchokǫ̀
Founded in: Wekweètı̀ is in the traditional territory of the Tłįchǫ First Nation, and was used for generations as a seasonal hunting camp. It became a permanent settlement in about 1960 when elders moved here from the Behchokǫ̀ area seeking to return to a more traditional lifestyle
Notable local: The late Alexis Arrowmaker, the elder and former chief who led several families here and thus founded the community
Claim to fame: The community nearest to the NWT’s diamond mines
Best expedition: The approximately two-week paddling trip down the Snare River from here to Behchokǫ̀
Don’t miss: Seeing caribou. This community was founded due in large part to the great herds of Barrenland caribou that often pass close by
 

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